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The 10 Greatest UK Death Metal Albums Of The Last 10 Years!

Over the last decade, UK death metal has returned in a big way, with both new blood and old dogs wringing necks in the name of high quality DEATH MTAL and delivering some of the finest work heard on these fair shores since the early 90’s!

Abhorrent Decimation – Miasmic Mutation (2015)

Released: September 25th, 2015 via Cold Birth Records

Rewind the clock back to 2015 and London’s Abhorrent Decimation had been slowly building a solid – and rabid – fanbase with their debut album, Miasmic Mutation, had quite the buzz about it with expectation reaching fever pitch…. but let’s face it, we’ve heard that all before right? A new band arrives on the scene, hyped up, expected to deliver a monster of an album only to fall flat on their collective faces; victims to apathy once the inevitable hype dies down off the back of what turns out to be a mediocre release. Well thank the high priest of fuck that Abhorrent Decimation did not, under any circumstances, fall into that category! Take our words for it when we say Miasmic Mutation could very well have been the death metal debut of the 2015. It was really that good.

Clinical, Brutal and home to some monumental chugging riffs, best of all, Miasmic Mutation just plain kicked ass. Abhorrent Decimation perfectly balanced technicality with that all important mosh-ability, incorporating the best of old-school death metal (think the brute force of Cannibal Corpse and the intricacy of Deicide) with the newer breed of faithful yet tech-savvy death-bringers such as Decapitated and Hour Of Penance.

The songwriting was top class, consistent and endlessly inventive and while death metal can sometimes feel staid and trapped within it’s own limiting confines, there was an open feel to Miasmic Mutation‘s lethal and lively songs that captured the attention throughout.

Benediction – Scriptures (2020)

Released: 16th October 2020 via Nuclear Blast.

The comeback album us old-school death metal lovin’ Brits were most looking forward to ended up being one of the finest death metal releases of 2020, regardless of geographical location!

As enamoured with the most brutal thrash as it was death metal, Benediction‘s Scriptures simply let fly with a shit-storm of catchy carnage in aural form. While obliterating opener “Scriptures Of I” was unadulterated deathly thrashing rage – and a blast of old-school malevolence that ticked all the right boxes – the mid-tempo grooves that informed much of their earlier work were still evident on the crushing “In Our Hands, the Scars” and the Bolt Thrower-esque stomp of “Tear Off These Wings”.

While expectations were understandably high for this album, it’s fair to say that Scriptures was an unmitigated success and rivalled anything released by the old-school aping new pups of 2020.

Scriptures was the sacred writings of death metal gods.

Cryptic Shift – Visitations From Enceladus (2020)

Released: 4th May 2020 via Blood Harvest.

The most ambitious album to emerge from the UK death metal scene in many a year, Cryptic Shift‘s Visitations From Enceladus was a progressive death metal voyage par excellence that surpassed all expectations and surely confirmed itself as one of, if not the most impressive progressive / technical death metal opus’ of 2020.

Opening with the progressive monster that is “Moonbelt Immolator” was a brave move but one backed up by the kind of chops that marked out Atheist, Blood Incantation, Voivod, Gorguts and Vektor as leaders of their chosen fields. A truly outstanding piece of work, this nearly 26 minute intergalactic colossus would have had Chuck Schuldiner nervously watching his back if it had been released 25 years ago; such is the imagination and skill on display.

The remaining three tracks were no slouches either, with Cryptic Shift taking us all on an “inter-dimensional sci-fi quest” of “pure imagination and space fiction worship” and, somehow, Visitations From Enceladus remained mesmerisingly enjoyable in a manner that fully transcended its deeply progressive tendencies, while proving to be a simply sensational gift of technically astonishing deathly thrashing rage!

Cryptworm – Spewing Mephitic Putridity (2022)

<br />Cryptworm - Spewing Mephitic Putridity

Released: March 11th, 2022 via Me Saco un Ojo Records / Pulverised Records

With the entrails of prime Demilich oozing all over Cryptworm’s vomitous foul-smelling fetidness (god damn, we love a Thesaurus), Spewing Mephitic Putridity was a highlight in what was a ridiculously good year for old-school death metal. 

Be disgusted. Be repulsed. Be anything but ashamed for diggin’ the shit out of such fetid nonsense and revel in the fact that bands like Cryptworm are still churning out death metal as gloriously rancid as this. 

Spewing Mephitic Putridity slapped you in the meat-chops with 30 straight minutes of gloriously mindless death fuckin’ metal….what’s not to like?!

De Profundis – The Blinding Light Of Faith (2018)

Released: May 10th, 2018 via Transcending Obscurity Records

One of the UK’s leading death metal acts returned in 2018 and De Profundis hadn’t been this focused and this ferocious in years. Perpetually progressive, subtly melodic and yet as savage as they come, De Profundis sounded rejuvenated here and The Blinding Light Of Faith remains an eye-opening blast of technical death metal brutality.

An anti-religious stance echoed throughout The Blinding Light Of Faith, as the hypocrisy of Abrahamic religions were stripped bare and mercilessly dissected. This was some seriously heavy shit – in context, in structure and in tone – with the band surpassing themselves from a technical perspective while maintaining a core sound that recalled the glory days of progressive death metal.

“Godforsaken” and “Bringer Of Light” aside, much of De Profundis’ death-doom metal past had been jettisoned entirely, with a technically complex fusion of black and death metal now informing the core of their sound. “Opiate For The Masses” offered the off-kilter thrills so often delivered by Pestilence while “War Be Upon Him” had a grinding AsphyxHail Of Bullets feel, perfectly reflecting the war-themed death metal of the song title. Both were highlights on an altogether exemplary release that never once failed to impress, with its unfathomable time changes and alternating moods surprising the listener at every turn.

A ‘great’ album was always to be expected but The Blinding Light Of Faith should be considered a modern extreme metal masterpiece from one of the UK’s leading purveyors of vehement filth.

Dyscarnate – With All Their Might (2017)

For the uninitiated, Shropshire-born Dyscarnate are a freakishly heavy power trio devoid of redundant parts and weak links, boasting a twin high/low vocal attack so tight and stylish that it has to be experienced to be believed. Better still, Dyscarnate don’t do big guitar solos or hackneyed theatrics – they just attack relentlessly until you are flattened into a two-dimensional outline of a human being (just go check out “Iron Strengthens Iron”).

With all their Might also found Dyscarnate exploring more adventurous territory than they had thus far. “Traitors in the Palace” stood tall as their most dramatic moment, replete with a dissonant Godflesh-style riff and punctuated by tolling bells, while “Nothing Seems Right” felt more moody and personal and also contained one of the most neck-obliterating drops on display here (or anywhere else for that matter).

With All Their Might was easily the most focused and downright exhilarating thing Dyscarnate had released to date. It remains a short, sharp shock the senses – their Reign in Blood if you will – and it fully deserved to elevate them alongside the likes of Dying Fetus on the world stage. At the buffet of extreme metal, these boys brazenly stuck their faces straight in the fillet steak, punched the waiter then walked out with their pockets stuffed full of vol au vents. Tasty.

The fact that we are still awaiting a follow-up to With All Their Might is a travesty!

Live Burial – Curse Of The Forlorn (2022)

Curse of the Forlorn (Death Metal) | LIVE BURIAL | Live Burial

Released: September 23rd, 2022 via Transending Obscurity Records

Death-worshipping is fine by us (Gruesome are building an entire career around it for fucks sake) and Live Burial‘s ‘take’ on the latter-day output of Chuck Schuldiner and co. has reaped numerous rewards for those who like their death metal to be old-school and technical, atmospheric and hideously heavy. 

Often overwhelmingly dense, Live Burial‘s whirlwind of sound threatened to disarm rather than cajole the listener but moments of semi-tempered brevity – particularly on the last few minutes of “Exhumation and Execution” – offered respite from the cold, harsh extremity that surrounded it.

Closing with the expansive “This Prison I Call Flesh” may have tested patience further but we maintain that this exquisitely played, and epic final song, indicated that Live Burial were fast evolving into one of the UK’s most important and interesting death metal bands. Sadly, they called it a day in 2023 but they left us with 3 outstanding albums in the shape of 2016’s Forced Back To Life, 2020’s aforementioned Unending Futility and 2022’s Curse Of The Forlorn.

Qrixkuor – Poison Palinopsia (2021)

Poison Palinopsia | Qrixkuor | Dark Descent Records

Released: August 13th, 2021 via Dark Descent Records

To the casual and sane music listener Qrixkuor’s first full-length release, Poison Palinopsia, was the aural equivalent of a deranged nightmare. However, for those of us who actively seek out such extreme stimulation this album was a twisted and exhilarating excursion into outlandish musical terrain.

Sharing a similar avant-garde take on death metal as fellow Brits Grave Miasma, with Poison Palinopsia Qrixkuor unleashed one of the most complex, brutal and gripping albums in recent memory. Qrixkuor moved throughout their two tracks with varying shades of musical discordance, sonic violence and malignant melodies….and this trio of Londoners managed to meld them all into a true work of extreme art.

With plenty of discordant melodies reminiscent of bands like Morbid Angel and SuffocationQrixkuor also had a knack for injecting tuneful phrases and atmosphere in and amongst the insanity of Poison Palinopsia. With intros that would suit a deranged horror movie soundtrack and more than a few changes of pace – from doomy passages to full-on blast-beats – meant there was never a dull moment to be found.

Unfathomable Ruination – Enraged and Unbound (2019)

Released: November 22nd, 2019 via Willowip Records

UK death metal extremists Unfathomable Ruination released their third full-length album, the aptly titled Enraged and Unbound, in November 2019 and it’s safe to say that it was a fuckin’ colossus!

The was impressive stuff from a band who’d already made quite the name for themselves with 2016’s bloody marvellous Finitude and who, with Enraged and Unbound, upped the ante considerably. Ben Wright’s vocals were a myriad of ghastly voices – running the gamut of screams, growls, shrieks and unholy sounds – but this album arguably belonged to drummer Doug Anderson; a man whose creativity here defied belief and provided the immovable backbone to the chaos that surrounded him. Whether Unfathomable Runation required pummelling breakdowns, an onslaught of blast beats, progressive death experimentation or a more ruminative approach during ‘doomier’ sections, Anderson delivered with aplomb. His, was a stunning performance.

The 6 minute opening track, “An Obsidian Perception”, contained enough face-melting, neck-snapping, sack-slapping riffs to fill any ‘normal’ death metal bands entire new album and that was just for fuckin’ starters! What followed continued down the same twisted, tortured path of inventive riff piled upon inventive riff, wrapped around a formative structure of groove, technicality and a seemingly endless stream of creativity and dark imagination.

There were no weak links here; only a series of tracks which built upon the last in a manner that provided numerous moments of death metal nirvana and if it sounds like we were (and still are) rather enamoured with this album, then you’d be right!

Vacuous – Dreams Of Dysphoria (2022)

<br />Vacuous - Dreams of Dysphoria

Released: October 14th, 2022 via Me Saco un Ojo Records

“Atmospheric death metal” – there’s a shit ton of that around, so why should we care about this particular album? 

Good question. Glad you asked. 

Vacuous‘ debut, Dreams Of Dysphoria, was a dissonant descent into the depths of hell itself (or, at least, the nearest septic tank). Slimy and grimy,  Dreams Of Dysphoria often entered into the murky world of both Ulcerate and Worm without quite going full disso-death; meaning moments of old-school stomp hit even harder when they did materialise. For example, “Matriarchal Blood” hit the kind of maddening grooves that’ll have you toppling your Gran’s sideboard over (the one with all the ‘nice’ ornaments on) in a mindless moment of furniture-based violence. 

As far as dissonant / atmospheric death metal goes, Vacuous‘ Dreams Of Dysphoria was one of the best releases 2022 had to offer! (now go apologise to your Gran).

Honourable mentions: Ageless Oblivion – Suspended Between Earth and Sky (2023) / Blasphemer – Blasphemer (2017) / Carcass – Torn Arteries (2021) / Celestial Sanctuary – Soul Diminished (2021) / Coffin Mulch – Spectral Intercession (2023) / Godeater – Vespera (2022) / Grave Miasma – Abyss of Wrathful Deities (2021) / Imperium – Titanomachy (2016) / Ingested – The Level Above Human (2018) / Memoriam – To The End (2021) / Sodomized Cadaver – Morbid Tales of Mutilation (2020) / Twitch Of The Death Nerve – A New Code of Morality (2014)

About Chris Jennings (1978 Articles)
I love 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/

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