Decade of Damnation: Artists Pick Their Favorite Albums of the 2010’s

Against all odds it seems you made it through another ten years.  Ten years likely filled with frustrating days at work, unexpected and abrupt changes, and countless moments many of which you’ve probably forgotten.  Hopefully though there has also been new music, new albums and songs that now you can’t imagine your life without.  Songs or albums that somehow made traffic more exciting or slowed that constant stream of chatter in your head.  We decided to find out what albums of the last ten years were that important to some of our favorite artists.  Hopefully you’ll be able to find some new albums to try based on this because if there’s one thing we will repeat endlessly is that you have favorite songs you haven’t heard yet.  So if you’re lucky enough to push through another ten years, keep finding those songs. Now, we asked for a list of five albums but some artists gave more or did things a little differently and because we love them all so much we let them do whatever they wanted. Enjoy.


Ryan Van Poederooyan (Devin Townsend Project/Imonolith)

Slipknot.5 The Gray Chapter
AvatarHail the Apocalypse
Faith No MoreSol Invictus

Øystein G. Brun – (Borknagar, Cronian)

Katatonia – The Fall of Hearts
Ulver – Childhood’s End
Ghost – Prequelle
Blackfield – Welcome to my DNA
Yelawolf – Getto Cowboys

Paolo Rossi (Fleshgod Apocalypse)

InsomniunShadows of the Dark Sun
HelloweenMy God Given Right
God is an Astronaut – All is Violent All is Bright
Kamelot – Haven
Honorable Mentions:
Within TemptationThe Unforgiving
Nightwish – Endless Forms Most Beautiful
Amorphis – Queen of Time
mago de oz  ilussia
mago de oz  ira dei

Atilla Vörös (Tyr)

Lana Del ReyBorn to Die
Anderson PaakMalibu
Suicide SilenceThe Black Crown
Muse: The Resistance (2009 but that was practically within the last decade;))
Guthrie GovanWest Coast Grooves
Notable mention:
Impending DoomDeath Will Reign (one of my fav workout albums:))

Kristian Niemann (Sorcerer, Demonoid, Ex-Therion)

TriptykonMelana Chasmata
NevermoreThe Obsidian Conspiracy

Alice in ChainsThe Devil Put Dinosaurs Here

Marcus  Siepen (Blind Guardian)

AmorphisUnder the red cloud
The theory of everything
PoemSkein Syndrome
Death AngelThe evil divide
SepulturaMachine Messiah
Pain of Salvationin the passing light of day
Alice in ChainsRainier Fog
BehemothThe Satanist
Fates WarningTheories of flight
Arch/MatheosWinter Etheral
Billy TalentDead Silence
BorknagarTrue North
Foo FightersWasting light
GodsmackWhen legends rise
Katatoniathe fall of hearts
Nick JohnstonAtomic Mind
OpethIn Cauda Venenum
Robert Pehrssons HumbuckerLong way to the light
SorcererThe Crowning of the fire king
Orphaned LandAll is one
Bad ReligionTrue North

Aydan (Elvenking)

HelloweenUnites Alive
AnathemaWeather Systems
InsomniumWinter’s Gate
Swallow the SunSongs from the North

Val Allen Wood (Theocracy)

Symphony XIconoclast
Jeff LoomisPlains of Oblivion
Bless the FallHollow Bodies
Mors Principium EstEmbers of a Dying World

Andy GillionNeverafter

Matt Fox (Shai Hulud/Zombie Apocalypse)

“In attempting to make this list I’ve confirmed it’s impossible, for me, to choose my favorite albums of the last decade. That being the case, this following list is a somewhat accurate account of my “most listened to records of the decade,” which, for all intents and purposes also likely serves as my favorites of the last decade. Maybe.”

AcceptBlood Of The Nations
Alice CooperWelcome 2 My Nightmare
Black Sabbath13
The Dead MilkmenThe King In Yellow
ExodusExhibit B: The Human Condition
G. L. O.  S. S.Demo 2015/Trans Day Of Revenge
OverkillThe Electric Age
PropagandhiFailed States
TØRSÖSono Pronta A Morire
TragedyDarker Days Ahead


Eric Dellon (Zombie Apocalypse)

KatatoniaDead End Kings
Misery IndexThe Killing Gods
Daylight DiesA Frail Becoming

Petter Hallaråker (Rendezvous Point)

MeshuggahViolent Sleep of Reason
The ContortionistClairvoyant
Dream TheaterDistance Over Time

Tymon Kruidenier (Our Oceans, Ex-Cynic, Ex-Exivious)

James BlakeOvergrown
Moses SumneyAromanticism
Susanne SundforThe Brothel
Petter CarlsenSirens
Exotic Animal Petting ZooTree of Tongues

Ragnar Zolberg (Solo, Sign, Ex-Pain of Salvation)

DeftonesDiamond Eyes
Dillinger Escape PlanOne of Us is the Killer
The HauntedExit Wounds
SoilworkThe Panic Broadcast
GojiraL’enfant Savauge
Song of ReturnLimits

Michael Mills (Toehider)

TroldhaugenObzkure Anekdotez For Maniakal Massez
Pepe DeluxeQueen of the Wave
Jeremy SouleThe Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Soundtrack
Sophie HutchingsBecalmed
MastodonEmperor of Sand

Jonathan Olsson – (Dynazty, Pain, Lindemann)
          Symphony XUnderworld
          VulfpeckLive at Madison square garden
          OpethIn Cauda Venenum
          Avishai CohenAlmah
          Lamb of GodResolution
          Dirty LoopsLoopified


Leon Del Müerte (Impaled, Nails)
Massive AttackHeligoland
Secret Chiefs 3Perichoresis

Shoi Sen (De Profundis)

Pink FloydEndless River
ImmolationMajesty & Decay
KreatorGods of Violence
Rotting ChristAealo


Ashley Edison (Power Quest)

TriviumIn Waves
Parkway DriveReverence
Black Sabbath13
MetallicaHardwired to Self Destruct
Killswitch EngageDisarm the Decent

Jona Tee (H.E.A.T)

TreatCoup De Grace
Seventh WonderThe Great Escape
A.C.TCircus Pandemonium
Symphony XIconoclast

Shiraz Lane (Full band list)

Foxy ShazamChurch Of Rock N’ Roll
Hardcore SuperstarSplit Your Lip
Michael MonroeSensory Overdrive
MuseBlack Holes And Revelations
Shiraz LaneCarnival Days
Stone SourHouse Of Gold & Bones, Part 1
Joe BonamassaBlues Of Desperation
H.E.A.TTearing Down The Walls
The DarknessHot Cakes


Victorius (Full band list)

HelloweenStraight Out of Hell
Blind GuardianBeyond the Red Mirror
Judas PriestFirepower
VisigothConquerors Oath
Mystic ProphecyKillhammer

Christian Muenzner (Eternity’s End, Alkaloid, ex-Obscura)

GalneryusUnder the Force of Courage
Sulphur AeonThe Scythe of Cosmic Chaos
Denis ShvartsDreamology
InferiThe Path of Apotheosis
Paul WardinghamAssimilate Regenerate

Andy Gillion (Mors Principium Est, Solo)

Scar Symmetry The Unseen Empire 
Protest the HeroVolition 
Dream TheaterThe Astonishing 
Rivers of NihilWhere Owls Know My Name
EarthsideA Dream In Static
The Reign of KindoThis Is What Happens Next
Symphony XIconoclast

Truls Haugen (Circus Maximus, Frogleap)

MuseThe Resistance
Fear FactoryMechanize
InsenseBurn in Beautiful Fire
Benea ReachPossession
MastodonOnce More Around the Sun
Susanne Sundfør10 Love Songs
Twelve Foot NinjaOutlier
Sons of ApolloPsycotic Symphony
BabymetalMetal Galaxy

Nils Patrik Johansson (Astral Doors, Wuthering Heights, Lion’s Share, Solo)

Nils Patrik JohanssonEvil Deluxe
AcceptBlood of the Nations
Judas PriestFirepower

Elisa C. Martin (Hamka, Ex-Dark Moor, Ex-Fairyland)

AmorphisUnder the Red Cloud
Five Finger Death PunchAnd Justice for None
Avenged SevenfoldNightmare
The UnguidedAnd the Battle Royale

Alex Pace (Call of the Void)
Carpenter BrutTrilogy
Cult LeaderLightless Walk
Drug ChurchCheer
ExpanderEndless Computer
Ghosts of GlaciersDecay
Iluminado Flesh of Suns
Inter ArmaSky Burial
Interpol El Pintor/Self-Titled
MastodonEmperor of Sand
New LowsAbhorrent Endings
Octaves Greener Pastures
Pissed JeansWhy Love Now
Power TripNightmare Logic
PropagandhiFailed States
Teenage WristChrome Neon Jesus
Trap ThemCrown Feral
Weekend NachosWorthless
WintersunTime I
Yaujta Songs of Descent

Dan Swano (Witherscape, Nightingale, Ex-Edge of Sanity, Ex-Bloodbath, and a most other bands)

Top Songs of the decade
Revikverheld – “Ich lass für dich das Licht an”
Work of Art – “The Rain”
Lady Gaga – “Shallow”
Ghost – “Ritual”
Lady Antebellum – “Need to Know”
James Bay – “Hold Back the River”
Ed Sheehan – “Castle on the Hill”
Anathema – “Dreaming Light”

Zak Stevens (Savatage, Circle II Circle)

ToolFear Inculum
MetallicaQuebec Magnetic
Judas PriestRedeemer of Souls
StyxThe Mission

Dobber Beverly (Oceans of Slumber)

Doyle Bramhall IIRich Man
Agnes ObelAventine
Swallow the SunWhen a Shadow is Forced into the Light
Pain of Salvation – Road Salt 1 & 2

Fiore (Fulci)

Anima MorteThe Nightmare Becomes Reality
AsphyxIncoming Death
Immolation  – Atonement
Hate EternalUpon Desolate Sands

Dome (Fulci)

Active ChildYou Are All I See

TurnstileStep 2 Rhythm
DevourmentConceived in Sewage
Comback KidSymptoms + Cures
Kendrick LamarGood Kid, M.A.A.D. City

Kjentil Nordhus (Green Carnation)

GorgutsColored Sands
OpethIn Cauda Venenum
GojiraL’Enfant Sauvage
YOBOur Raw Heart
Dillinger Escape PlanOne of Us Is the Killer

Jamie Van Dyck (Earthside)

RadioheadA Moon Shaped Pool
DeftonesDiamond Eyes
Steven WilsonGrace for Drowning
Our OceansOur Oceans
Clint Lowery’s Hello Demons…Meet SkeletonsChoices EP
Hans ZimmerInception

Eric Eyster (Hell Night)

Mike patton– Mondo Cane
Sloan – Commonwealth
Dungen– Allas Sak
King Gizzard and The Lizard Wizard and the Mild High Club – Sketches of East Brunswick
Black mountain – Wilderness Heart
Off!  – self-titled
Cactus Blossoms – You’re Dreaming
M83 – Hurry up, We’re Dreaming
Drab majesty – The Demonstration

Brian Fair (Hell Night, Ex-Shadow’s Fall)

Trey AnastasioTraveler
Explosions In The SkyTake Care, Take Care, Take Care
FireburnDon’t Stop The Youth
Into AnotherOmens
Moon DuoCircles
SleepThe Sciences
SpiritualizedAnd Nothing Hurt
SupertouchEarth Tones

Adam Arseneau (Hell Night)

NothingTired of Tomorrow
Black MountainIV
Faith No MoreSol Invictus
ASGBlood Drive
Queens of the Stone Age – ...Like Clockwork
The Life and TimesLost Bees
Once and Future BandSelf-Titled
The Devil’s BloodThe Thousandfold Epicentre
In SolitudeSister

Rick Digiorno (The Lion’s Daughter)

Judas PriestFirepower
Impure WilhelminaBlack Honey
HealthVol 4 Slaves of Fear
Faith No MoreSol Invictus
HorsebackHalf Blood
MotorheadBad Magic

GodfleshA World Lit Only by Fire

Adam Janzi  (Vola)

Tool – Fear Inoculum 

This album isn’t my favorite of the decade because of the anticipation, but the storytelling and the songs themselves make a great album in my opinion. And the production is stunning!

Not enough can be said for the track ‘Culling Voices’ which is quickly becoming one of my favorite Tool songs. There is something about the album and that song specifically that just reminds me of summer and sometimes it even feels like the vocals can be carried with the calm wind, since they are so soft at times.

Massive Attack – Heligoland

Massive Attack are one of my favorite groups in all genres. This specific album is like a beacon of melancholy to me. The songs are so moody and well composed. The album contains some of my favorite Massive Attack songs ever, such as ‘Pray For Rain’ and ‘Girl I Love You’. As always, Massive Attack really make sure to present their albums as a complete piece of art and not just a collection of songs. And it’s stunning to me, how well the artwork corresponds with the mood and the vibe of the songs.

Nine Inch Nails – Hesitation Marks 

This album brings me back to winter quite a few years back. I love to hear Nine Inch Nails in a setting where the electronics are generally more polished but still eerie. The softness of this album combined with a sinister and eerie mood gives it such a unique atmosphere that I haven’t found elsewhere in the form of an album. There are so many layers in this album, which is displayed so well in songs like ‘Satellite’ and ‘Running’. Watching live-performances of songs from this album is a gem for drummers, which is a nice bonus!

Chelsea Wolfe – Abyss

I’ve mentioned this album quite a few times, but it’s one of those albums that really has stuck with me. I remember the first time I heard the opening track ‘Carrion Flowers’. I was struck by the deep atmosphere of the song and had to check out the rest of the album. And all the songs just add to it in their own way, from start to finish. The album is not shocking or vile, it just takes you into a calm abyss and holds you there for a moment.

Korn – The Nothing 

So, Korn is a band that I’ve been listening since before I started playing music. I remember learning drums to their songs when I was just getting started. But that is not the reason why this album is part of my list. I feel that they’ve really outdone themselves on this album. There’s so much creativity in the songs and they feel very refreshing, intense and honest. And those things are at the core of the sound of Korn in my opinion. Creativity, intensity and honesty. But there is something that ties this whole album together and makes it great as an album. Sure, the songs themselves are amazing in my opinion, but there is this unapologetic undertone here that turns this into a great album in my opinion.

Lindsay O’Connor (Lindsay O. Vox, Eyes of Perdition, Coma Cluster Void)

Instagram: @lindsayovox

Deftones – Diamond Eyes

The sixth studio album from Sacramento’s Deftones, Diamondeyes proved to be a chapter-turning release for the band, as they refined their quiet/loud dynamic in highly emotive, and at times down-right sexy (here’s looking at you, “You’ve Seen the Butcher”) tracks. Diamond Eyes furnishes a truly lush soundscape as much as calls up the band’s 90s alterna-metal roots, while opening up the decade for the band’s ambitious subsequent efforts to follow.

Vermin Womb – Permanence

Vermin Womb’s  2014 debut, Permanence, is the stuff of the human id, where all things raw and primal are channeled through dissonant, Blackened Death Grind that just gets inside of you and loosens all higher-order thinking. The result: six truly upsetting tunes from onslaught to finish.

Khemmis – Absolution

“Ash, Cinder, Smoke,” the second track on Khemmis’ 2015 debut, Absolution, possibly best captures the essence of this album: classic Progressive Rock/Metal underscores soaring melodies and vocalist Phil Pendergast’s pitch-perfect choruses. The entire album, however, is deeply effective, honest, and without hyperbole – it’s a standout debut from a band that quickly thereafter gained immense and well-deserved praise.

Converge – All We Love We Leave Behind

Manic, emotive, self-aware, kinetic – everything we love about Boston’s Converge coalesces on All We Love We Leave Behind. The spirit of this release is one of maturity – that of the band and that of the hardcore genre itself. AWLWLB is a reflection on the rage of youth and what you take with you into new epochs of life. In the case of Converge, not a drop of aggression is wasted or “left behind–” it’s simply refined and then again amplified through innovative and thoroughly cathartic tunes.

Bell Witch –
Mirror Reaper

A single, 83-minute track, Mirror Reaper resounds in its quiet moments as much as it does in its loud ones, and both are equal in abundance. Every note carries dramatic heaves of contemplative, mournful Doom; every breath between the phrases carries spectacular revelation. It’s the interplay of internalization and relief that makes Mirror Reaper toe the line between life and death very closely –  tread carefully.

The Faceless – Autotheism

With a touch of the dramatic, Autotheism from The Faceless touches corners of the psyche that are a little frayed, but rife with genius – much like band leader Michael Keene. Favorite track: “Movement I: Create,” where Keene’s voice is captured in beautiful narration, as angular riffs spin tangled webs that lead to a precarious inner world rife with self-realization (“I am God…”). Autotheism is a universe Keene has architectured to exorcise many demons, while aurally inviting in so many more.

Maruta  – Remain Dystopian

Horrifically underrated, Maruta’s Remain Dystopian is a feather in the Death Grind cap at a time when things were becoming a little predictable. The album braids mega-stellar riff after mega-stellar riff into songs that are interesting and meaningful. The world on this album may be a battered one, but the music presented here is just so finely done that you’ll at least have something killer to listen to as you watch the world burn.

Meshuggah – The Violent Sleep of Reason

Violent Sleep of Reason synthesizes Meshuggah’s nearly 30 year, meticulous study of dissonance and poly-rhythms into explosive yet characteristically precise and well-architectured songs. The album collects, refines, then highlights everything I personally love about the band’s journey: Frederick Thordendal’s jazzy, inter-dimensional interludes from Contradictions Collapse; the aggressive, atonal beat down of Chaosphere; the abysmal, heady opus of Catch-33; the decipherable and unequivocal aggression of Obzen. The band is slated for a new album in 2020, which means we can look forward to yet another decade of schooling from the Swedish maestros.

Artificial Brain – Infrared Horizon

Infrared Horizon is breathless, furious, and yet so moving. Artificial Brain is heralded for their creative combination of subgenres (“old school” 90s DM, Black Metal, Grind, Progressive Metal, and so on), but what is most impressive about them is the bleak, introspective atmosphere that simply carries effortlessly through their music. And it’s this ambiance that elevates Infrared Horizon from being a mere melange of styles into a showcase of superior instrumentation that breathes, feels, and lives a life of its own.

The Contortionist – Language

I’ve often used the word “beautiful” to describe moments in Metal that dare to be moving and introspective, honest or vulnerable. But in the case of Language by The Contortionist, the music transcends all superficial adjectives, as it takes you into a new level of consciousness. This is, of course, in no small part due to Michael Lessard’s remarkable voice, which can soothe and color, as much as it can brutally pummel. Language is the band’s learned presentation  of Progressive Metal in the 21st century, and its an album that will assuredly dignify The Contortionist in the eyes and ears of open-minded Metal fans for generations to come.

Elder – Lore

Psyche-Rock, Progressive Metal, Doom…whatever you want to call it,   Lore from Elder is a guitar-guided, ambiance-focused album that just  fucking rocks. The Massachusetts trio knows when to drive ahead with pulsing riffs and when to let the proverbial kite fly into the wind on the album. As well-done as Lore is, the album, to me, signifies freedom, and is no tightly wound, noodly Prog-Rock scheme. It drives you, and it teaches you to let go of the reigns once in a while to usher in a whole new era of possibilities.

Other Standouts

Periphery – Periphery II: This Time It’s Personal

Every Time I Die – Low Teens

The Dillinger Escape Plan – One Of Us Is the Killer 

Carcass – Surgical Steel

Gojira -‘L’Enfant Sauvage

Power Trip – Nightmare Logic

Black Breath – Sentenced to Life

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