Shredification: Best Metal Albums of 2009

Merry Rotting Christmas, ladies and gentleman, and welcome to the year-end installment of this column. Though other, more industrious writers have cast their vision back across the decade to craft comprehensive lists of goodness, spanning all ten years, this morsel of prose will focus solely on the dying year. Some of 2009's best offerings have already been profiled in my two previous columns, so spots are reserved in my top ten for Baroness' Blue Album , Shrinebuilder's self-titled release, and Gama Bomb's Tales from the Grave in Space. The seven discs to follow round out a ten-spot of metal mastery. [...]

Shredification: Thrash Attack

The last column took on a bifurcated Death Metal/Stoner Metal focus, so I'm happy to return today with an update that concerns the Bay Area's favorite kind of metal: Thrash! To bring the uninitiated up to speed, let us note the fact that these Nor-Cal shores were at the epicenter of a musical movement, at a time when bands like Exodus, Testament, Death Angel, and everyone's favorite Napster-enemies were beginning still-extant careers amid an orgy of polka-beating violence. In recent years, heavy music has witnessed an explosion of so-called "retro-thrashers," all attempting to capture the glory and furious fecundity that [...]

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