So many great albums have been released in 2016. But, sometimes great albums are released and they for some odd reason go completely unnoticed until you just so happen to stumble upon them months later. Consider this my attempt to keep you up to date on all of the important releases that have happened in 2016 thus far. The following albums are in no particular order, because honestly, you need all of them in your life. This is not meant to be an all-encompassing list, so let us know if we missed some of your favorites.

1

Architects – All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us

Architects - All Our Gods Have Abandoned UsStandout Tracks:
Nihilist, A Match Made In Heaven, Gone With The Wind
Why?
All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us managed to go toe to toe with its predecessor, Lost Forever // Lost Together, and that’s a feat in itself. With it’s explosive atmosphere and fully-amped tracks, All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us is one of the heaviest records thus far of 2016. But, it’s not that traditional heavy for the sake of being heavy music we are commonly presented with in metalcore. Its aggressiveness serves to complement the message of the band, which fights against the wrongs of the world and pushes for change–even if it may be too late. All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us is a record worth buying, but more importantly, Architects are a band worth investing in.
Buy All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us

2

Billy Talent – Afraid of Heights

Billy Talent - Afraid of HeightsStandout Tracks:
Ghost Ship of Cannibal Rats, Afraid of Heights, This is Our War
Why?
Billy Talent have matured in just about every way since their last release, Dead Silence, in 2012. Afraid of Heights still brings us the signature sound we’ve all grown to love with deeper lyrical content than the band has previously produced. Frontman Benjamin Kowalewicz dives into the current U.S. political landscape, dealing with losing loved ones, and much more.
Buy Afraid of Heights

3

Periphery – Periphery III: Select Difficulty

Periphery - Periphery III: Select DifficultyStandout Tracks:
Marigold, The Way The News Goes…, Lune
Why?
Periphery have stepped up their game in a huge way since last years double album Juggernaut: Alpha/Omega. PIII: Select Difficulty explores the heavier and softer sides that the band is capable of with tracks like “Motormouth” and “Lune,” respectively. As they said in their recently released “Remain Indoors” documentary, they’ve taken the best aspects of PI and PII and melded them into one hell of an album. Periphery have stepped up their technical abilities, song compositions, vocal melodies, and production quality and it shows on PIII: Select Difficulty.
Buy Periphery III: Select Difficulty

4

The Word Alive – Dark Matter

The Word Alive - Dark MatterStandout Tracks:
Trapped, Insane, Made This Way
Why?
Dark Matter captures a few key elements that are really hard for some bands to find. On one hand, the album maintains a relatively slow tempo throughout (with exceptions like “Sellout”) yet it remains incredibly heavy from start to finish. On the other hand, just about every track on the record has a chorus that makes you want to sing along at the top of your lungs. Dark Matter has proven that The Word Alive can outdo themselves with every subsequent release.
Buy Dark Matter

5

Kvelertak – Nattesferd

Kvelertak - Nattesferd
Standout Tracks:
1985, Nattesferd, Berserker
Why?
With catchy hooks and a massive sound, Kvelertak finds themselves somewhere in between hair metal and heavy metal. Their latest effort, Nattesferd, finds itself straddling between these two worlds with its eclectic beat and mind-invading guitar riffs. These almost opposing realms of metal somehow blend together to make a surprisingly interesting and revolutionary sound that is extremely addicting to the ear. While listening to Nattesford, you’ll find yourself uncontrollably bobbing your head and drumming along to the beat. This album is definitely a diamond in the rough that you need in your collection. Besides that, hearing a metal song sang completely in Norwegian adds a slight edge to an already badass album.
Buy Nattesferd

6

Northlane/In Hearts Wake – Equinox

Northlane/In Hearts Wake - EquinoxStandout Tracks:
Refuge, Equinox, Hologram
Why?
See what I did there? Yes, Equinox is only three songs long, but it hits just as hard as a full length album. The only question I had after listening through this album was, “Why haven’t these two bands gotten together sooner?” Northlane and fellow Aussies, In Hearts Wake perfectly compliment each other and Equinox will definitely leave you wanting more collaborations from these two bands.
Buy Equinox

7

Erra – Drift

Erra - DriftStandout Tracks:
Drift, The Hypnotist, Luminesce
Why?
With the addition of JT Cavey (ex-Texas in July) on vocals and vocalist/guitarist Jesse Cash completely decimating every riff on the album, Drift was bound to succeed in every way. The unique clean vocals of Cash paired with the aggressiveness that Cavey brings to the table is a perfect blend that really sets Erra apart from everyone else in the genre.
Buy Drift

8

Gojira – Magma

Gojira - MagmaStandout Tracks:
Silvera, Stranded, The Cell
Why?
Gojira have always been progressives in metal, but nothing has solidified their legacy quite like their 2016 release, Magma. Simply put, it’s down-right mesmerizing, almost like you are in an alternate dimension of sorts. Then, you are hit with their earth-shattering riffs and you find yourself back in reality again. Magma is anything but conventional with its unorthodox sounds, but that’s what makes it so special. It’s a monster of a record that I personally would never want to live without.
Buy Magma

9

Silent Planet – Everything Was Sound

Silent Planet - Everything Was SoundStandout Tracks:
Panic Room, Psychescape, Dying in Circles
Why?
Silent Planet released their debut album, The Night God Slept, in 2014, and somehow I’m just now hearing about them. I listened to Everything Was Sound for the first time just last week and it blew me away. This album is raw, emotional, and at the same time sonically massive. Frontman Garrett Russell, has an uncanny ability to switch from “soft” vocals to melt your face off insanity in no time. Silent Planet are at the beginning of what is sure to be an explosive career.
Buy Everything Was Sound

10

letlive. – If I’m The Devil…

letlive. - If I'm The Devil...Standout Tracks:
I’ve Learned To Love Myself, Good Mourning, America, Reluctantly Dead
Why?
Letlive. have been known for their bombastic and crazy sound, but their recent release, If I’m The Devil…, features a tamer version of the band. With emotionally delivered ballads and upbeat punk tracks, If I’m The Devil… is letlive.’s most audacious record to date. The record also attempts to make a positive statement, mainly politically, as it tackles social issues with songs like “Good Mourning, America” and “Reluctantly Dead.” As always, they dare to take a stand with their music and that is perhaps the most commending quality of what letlive. does. I’ll be the first to admit that this record took a bit of time to grow on me, but after you get used the new sound, you’ll quickly realize that this is the right direction for letlive. It’s music that matters, so it’s a must have in any record collection.
Buy If I’m The Devil…