01) Omnium Gatherum, The Burning Cold (Century Media)

Before I listened to both Omnium Gatherum’s The Burning Cold and Amorphis’ The Queen of Time, I thought Amorphis would be further up on the list. Obviously, I was wrong. I didn’t understand how guitarist Markus Vanhala had time to construct such a flawless album between touring with both Insomnium and OG as well as after releasing 2016’s Winter’s Gate and OG’s Grey Heavens. I want to know what his secret is! Moving forward, I have a film background and The Burning Cold did what I love most: it began just as it ended. Track one is “The Burning” as the final song is “Cold.” As simple as this is, I thought it was brilliant. And sometimes, keeping things simple has the best outcome.

Key Track(s): “The Burning” “Refining Fire” “Be the Sky” “The Frontline” “Cold”


Honorable Mentions (Alphabetical Order):

All That Remains, Victim of the New Disease (Fearless Records) – “Fuck Love”

Arkona, Khram (Napalm) – “Tseluya zhizn’”

At the Gates, To Drink From the Night Itself (Century Media) – “To Drink from the Night Itself”

Black Fast, Spectre of Ruin (EOne) – “Mist of Ruin”

Cauldron, New Gods (The End Records) – “Prisoner of the Past”

Dimmu Borgir, Eonian (Nuclear Blast) – “Archaic Correspondence”

Doro, Forever Warriors, Forever United (Nuclear Blast) – “All For Metal”

Exmortus, The Sound of Steel (Prosthetic) – “To the Ends of the Earth”

God Is An Astronaut, Epitaph (Napalm) – “Medea”

Hate Eternal, Upon Desolate Sands (Season of Mist) – “Vengeance Striketh”

Helion Prime, Terror of the Cybernetic Space Monster (AFM) – “The Human Condition”

High on Fire, Electric Messiah (EOne) – “Steps of the Ziggurat/House of Enlil”

Hyro the Hero, Flagged Channel (RED Music) – “Live Your Fuckin Life”

Jonathan Davis, Black Labyrinth (Sumerian) – “Please Tell Me”

Judas Priest, Firepower (Columbia) – “Never The Heroes”

Kamelot, The Shadow Theory (Napalm) – “Burns To Embrace”

Khemmis, Desolation (20 Buck Spin) – “From Ruin”

Lizzy Borden, My Midnight Things (Metal Blade) – “Obsessed with You”

Mantar, The Modern Art of Setting Ablaze (Nuclear Blast) – “Midgard Serpent (Seasons of Failure)”

Marduk, Viktoria (Century Media) – “Silent Night”

Night Verses, From the Gallery of Sleep (Equal Vision) – “Vice Wave”

Nita Strauss, Controlled Chaos (Sumerian) – “Mariana Trench”

Nonpoint, X (Spinefarm) – “Dodge Your Destiny”

Obscura, Diluvium (Relapse) – “An Epilogue to Infinity”

Pig Destroyer, Head Cage (Relapse) – “The Torture Fields”

Revocation, The Outer Ones (Metal Blade) – “Fathomless Catacombs”

Satan, Cruel Magic (Metal Blade) – “Legions Hellbound”

Daron Malakian and Scars on Broadway, Dictator (Scarred for Life) – “Never Forget”

Sevendust, All I See Is War (Rise Records) – “Life Deceives You”

Shining, X – Varg Utan Flock (Season of Mist) – “Jag Ar Din Fiende”

Striker, Play to Win – “Summoner”

The Sword, Used Future (Razor & Tie) – “The Wild Sky”

Tribulation, Down Below (Century Media) – “Here Be Dragons”

Voivod, The Wake (Century Media) – “Always Moving”

Vreid, Lifehunger (Season of Mist) – “One Hundred Years”

Warrel Dane, Shadow Work (Century Media) – “Rain”


Listen to Zenae’s highlights in the playlist below: