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30 Incredible Metal Albums That Turn 30 Years Old In 2016

21. Bad Brains – I Against I

Source // static.stereogum.com

Source // static.stereogum.com

Bad Brains epitomised diversity and I Against I is a masterpiece, regardless of which decade it surfaced in. One of those albums where the stars just seem to align, Bad Brains arguably peaked with a scathing and exhausting collection of violent, visceral compositions led by the instantly recognisable “House of Suffering“.

Radical and ridiculously focused, the funky innovative rhythms of Dr Know and the vocal gymnastics of H.R. somehow resulted in a warm, yet blisteringly raw, anomaly when it came to 1986 releases.

Bad Brains were operating in their own world and while the influences punk, funk, soul, reggae and metal loomed large they forged their own sound entirely, a feat precious few band ever achieve!

20. Metal Church – The Dark

Source // cdn.discogs.com

Source // cdn.discogs.com

Combining traditional metal with thrash, Metal Church had a powerhouse frontman in the shape of David Wayne and riffs most bands would skin their own mothers for. Their self titled debut is an undisputed classic and follow-up, The Dark, almost hit those heady heights.

Featuring all-time ‘Church’ classics “Ton Of Bricks”, “Start The Fire”, the intimidating power ballad – and minor hit – that was “Watch The Children Pray” and the creepy title track, The Dark may have been one of the more melodic thrash releases of ’86 but it was also one of the finest and the most accomplished.

Side 2 may have failed to maintain the velocity of the ‘5 for 5’ hit rate of side 1 but there’s no escaping the fact that Metal Church and The Dark were a monumental influence on the burgeoning thrash scene.

 19. Heir Apparent – Graceful Inheritence

Source // metal-archives.com

Source // metal-archives.com

Heir Apparent’s debut album may have been virtually ignored by their native Americans but Europe lapped it up, drawn in by a majestic sound – not attributable to the mix which is uniformly terrible it has to be said – which recalled the early sounds of Fates Warning, Queensrÿche and the NWOBHM.

Historically, this underground treasure of U.S. power metal has much to offer. Ahead of its time and revered amongst aficionados, its humble beginnings (self funded and without label help) are writ large but the songwriting nous and accomplished musicianship on tracks such as the instrumental “R.I.P (Live)” and the delicately immersive “Keeper Of The Reign” is obvious.

About Chris Jennings (1505 Articles)
I love Heavy Metal. Always have. Always will. As editor of Worship Metal - a site dedicated to being as positive about Metal and its myriad of sub-genres as possible - my aim is to 'worship' Metal through honest reviews, current news and a wide variety of features; offering the same exposure to underground bands as we do to mainstream/well known acts. Our mantra; the bands are partners and we exist to serve the bands \m/

27 Comments on 30 Incredible Metal Albums That Turn 30 Years Old In 2016

  1. Awaken the Guardian? Rage for Order?

  2. Chris Jennings // February 28, 2016 at 8:01 am // Reply

    No room for ’em! Still quality though 🙂 \m/

  3. Apart from my favorite uberclassics, most of which are in the list:

    Whiplash – Power and Pain
    Fates Warning – Awaken the Guardian (fave FW)
    Queensryche – Rage for Order
    these three should have been in the list!

    Hallows Eve – Death and Insanity (D-I-E!)
    Sentinel Beast – Depth of Death (CORPSE!)
    Omen (Teeth of the Hyyydraaaa), Sacrifice, Helstar, Stormwitch (their best too)…

  4. Chris Jennings // February 28, 2016 at 4:19 pm // Reply

    Power And Pain was 1985 I believe but fair play on the others Vic \m/

  5. That list makes me feel old…..

  6. Fates Warning’s “Awaken the Guardian” should most definitely be included. Personally, I would say top 5 even.

  7. Great list, but I’d have put Sodom’s “Obsessed By Cruelty” in there, at least in the lower reaches.

    • Chris Jennings // March 2, 2016 at 8:42 pm // Reply

      A primitive black-thrash cult classic but not sure what we would have left out to include it!

  8. Bloodpoole // March 1, 2016 at 10:22 pm // Reply

    Fates Warning – “Awaken the Guardian??”

  9. Still I was only 6 at the time, I’ve been introduced to trash/hardcore/crossover/métal by my dad’s friends with Attitude Adjustment Américan Paranoïa at the âge of 10. It all began there followed by Crumbsuckers,Cro-mags, Slayer, Metallica, Sepultura etc. Thank you for this awesome list and to mention Sword and Voïvod

  10. Greg Baltzer // March 2, 2016 at 3:39 am // Reply

    You deservedly left off Judas Priest – Turbo lol. I would have added Sodom – Obsessed by Cruelty, Samhain – November Coming Fire(kind of a crossover album), Ozzy – Ultimate Sin(a lot better that Bark at the Moon, and No Rest for the Wicked, and Cryptic Slaughter – Convicted.

    • Chris Jennings // March 2, 2016 at 6:57 pm // Reply

      Yep, no Turbo here….not Priest’s finest hour by any means! Ironically, all but Samhain’s November Coming Fire were on the original short list but fell victim to the cull.

  11. I’ll add to the Awaken the Guardian mention and add Satan’s Host-Metal From Hell and Manilla Road-The Deluge.

    • Chris Jennings // March 3, 2016 at 7:37 am // Reply

      Damn that Awaken The Guardian! That’s going to haunt us! Nice shout with Manilla Road, a great album. Satan’s Host, completely forgot about them…..gonna dig that one out \m/

  12. legitimized metal as an art form on a mainstream level. Remember that 1986 was the era of bloated hair bands, and here came this total blast of energy and aggression — a pure thrash album in every sense. But aside from its power,

  13. Savage Grace – Master Of Disguise, Ratt – Dancing Undercover, Deathrow – Riders Of Doom, Assassin – The Upcoming Terror to name a few.

  14. Rob Raymakers // November 1, 2016 at 8:49 pm // Reply

    where is Queensrijche’s rage for order???

  15. It’s Doomsday FOR The Deceiver

  16. Aaadabaadab // June 18, 2017 at 1:26 pm // Reply

    Nuclear assault’s hang the pope sounds like grindcore because of how fast the vocals are AND its a full speed song

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