In less than four weeks, it will be 2010, which can only mean one thing. All our favorite metal scribes and blogs are dusting off their trusty thesaruses (thesari?) and cranking up the hyperbole machine to come out with their list of the year’s best music. But since January 1 will bring not only a new year, but a new decade, it’s a perfect storm of publications and bloggers telling you what the definitive albums and people were from the last year or ten. Since many of them are arbitrary and blend together, we at Metal Insider thought we should make a list of the lists, so you can list them on your own lists. List-tastic!! Our pick for No. 1 will be unleashed in another post shortly, but check out numbers 5-2 after the jump.
5. Reign In Blonde’s “Hottest Chicks In Metal” List
It’s been a pretty interesting year for blogs. With print titles dying off (Metal Edge, Metal Maniacs), Web sites like Noisecreep and Reign in Blonde have sprung up in the past year or so to fill the void. We like Reign in Blonde because Julia and Elise don’t care who they offend, so it’s funny and not afraid to bite the hand that feeds. Case in point – after Revolver came out with their annual tribute to sexism (albeit probably their best-selling issue of the year), “Hottest Chicks In Metal” issue, the RiB girls ran their own bracket style tournament for the hottest chicks in metal – using guys. Treating guys like Dave Navarro and Dallas Coyle like pieces of meat and talking about them like they were girls was a great way to react to the casual sexism of Revolver and the mens club that is metal mags and blogs. Congrats to their winner, Black Tide’s Gabe Garcia. Our only complaint: they didn’t like us enough to ask us to contribute. Come on broads, where’s the love?
4. Noisecreep’s “Best Songs of the 2000s” List
This is one of the most arbitary lists on this list-tastic list of lists. There’s so much metal out there that to distill a whole decade into just ten songs isn’t an enviable task. And while we agree with most of the bands on the list, some of the songs listed were head scratchers. Opeth’s “Window Pane” is a beautiful song from their mostly-acoustic Damnation, but it’s far from the band’s best song. And Mastodon’s “Oblivion” over “Blood and Thunder” or “March of the Fire Ants” is another puzzler. Pantera is likely included just for nostalgia purposes. And we don’t mind Tool’s “Schism” being #1, even though they don’t even rank in other peoples’ top 100. But we feel like the main reason this list exists is to generate discussion, which it certainly has.
3. The Onion AV Club’s “The Decade’s Best Metal” List
While many people view satirical newspaper The Onion as only a source of funny made up news, their AV Club does a great job of critically reviewing TV, movies, video games, books and of course music . We like this list, mainly because it states from the get-go that it’s completely the opinion of its author, Leonard Pierce. And while it’s a given that the Converges, Mastodons and Opeths are going to be on any list of the best of the decade, the inclusion of such disparate bands as Earthless, Agoraphobic Nosebleed and System of a Down on his list of 30 makes it one of the most complete.
2. Metal Sucks’ 21 Best Metal Albums of the 21st Century… So Far List
Metal Sucks didn’t waste any time coming out with a list of the best of the decade. They did theirs way back in June. Of course that means that any of the stellar albums released in the last half of this year (like Converge’s Axe to Fall, Slayer’s World Painted Blood and Baroness The Blue Record) weren’t eligible, so that makes this an incomplete list. Also, since the people they polled picked different albums by some of the same bands, the list is heavy on mutiple albums from crowd-pleasing favorites like Lamb of God and Killswitch Engage. But Mastodon’s Leviathan was #1 by a landslide, which is probably where I would rank it as well. And by getting a host of guest bloggers and poll respondents to write why the albums in question made the list made for an interesting read. And the way they spaced it out over a month was a great way to build anticipation. Speaking of spacing things out, look for #1 on our list of lists coming soon.