Teeth of the Divine Staff Picks for 2018

The way we do the TOP 2018 list here at Teeth is that we’ve waited until the year was actually over. That way, we’re sure we didn’t miss giving proper credit to that one album that released a minute before midnight on the 31st. So just in case some metal band from Tonga got an idea, we were ready for it. Nonetheless, every year there’s more and more material out there for us to listen to and it’s pretty much impossible to cover it all. Yet, 2018 saw plenty of albums that deserve to be remembered next year — and some being which will stick around longer. Maybe you missed something? Maybe you have your own ideas what ruled in 2018 and what should never have been released in the first place? Check our lists out, see how our picks matched up, and let’s hope 2019 doesn’t prove to be worse.

by Staff

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Luke Saunders

Due to my main writing gig and busy work schedule, I haven’t contributed to Teeth of the Divine as much as I would’ve liked in 2018. In truth it’s been a very challenging year on both a personal and professional level, though I have still managed to consume a hell of a lot of metal along the way. And there’s been no shortage of quality releases across the heavy music spectrum in 2018. Despite this, I can’t say the year has delivered too many albums that have absolutely floored me.

Nevertheless the overwhelming bounty of metal albums released throughout the year has left me with still so much to catch up on. Another benefit from list season. Death metal proved especially fruitful in 2018, with a ridiculous quantity of solid to high quality albums, led by the ongoing old school revival, along with oodles of prog and tech encrusted death.

As usual, thanks to Erik and the rest of the writing crew for their tireless hard work and quality write-ups and recommendations. And cheers to all the readers that stop by and continuing supporting Teeth of the Divine for another year.

There’s also been some top notch albums that I’ve only scratched the surface of thus far, so props to Rolo Tomassi, Vanishing Kids, Sigh, Satan, Riverside and Beaten to Death, I’m looking forward to spending more time with you. Anywho, here’s my selections of the best albums of 2018. Cheers.

10. Æpoch – Awakening Inception. Self-release

9. Extremity Coffin Birth. 20 Buck Spin.

9.  Boss Keloid Melted on the Inch. Holy Roar Records.

7. The Atlas MothComa Noir. Prosthetic Records.

6. Slugdge Esoteric Malacology. Willowtip Records.

5. 1914The Blind Leading the Blind. Redefining Darkness Records.

4. Necropanther – Eyes of Blue Light. Self-released.

3. AlkaloidLiquid Anatomy. Season of Mist

2. Sulphur AeonThe Scythe of Cosmic Chaos. Van Records.

1.The OceanPhanerozoic I: Palaeozoic. Metal Blade. Another towering, densely layered and emotive progressive metal opus from Germany’s The Ocean. Although not quite hitting the heights of 2013’s incredible Pelagial album, Phanerozoic I: Palaeozoic is yet another sterling effort of stunning craftmanship, epic compositions, and hugely affecting and memorable song-writing.

Honorable Mentions:

Mule SkinnerAirstrike


Madder MortemMarrow


Chapel of DiseaseAnd As We Have Seen the Storm, We Have Embraced the Eye

Barren EarthA Complex of Cages

Horrendous Idol

MessaFeast for Water

Ripped to Shreds埋葬

Psycroptic As the Kingdom Drowns

YOBOur Raw Heart



Although far from dumpster fire missteps, 2018 albums from a handful of reliable favorites left me underwhelmed. Hopefully Anaal Nathrakh, Revocation, Clutch, Haken and Bloodbath can do better next time round.

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  1. Commented by: Morbid

    Some good stuff in here, lots I missed or haven’t got to yet. Checked out the Aepoch and regret not looking into it earlier.

    Nice to see the Abysmal Torment mentioned a couple of times, it’s phenomenal for the genre but seems to be getting missed elsewhere.

    For me:
    Thrash AOTY (by a mile): Sabateur – Vicious Circle. Fun as hell thrash, charismatic vocals, plenty of ’80s twists, fantastic dual-guitar solos, and unlike some other late thrash albums that won’t be named, the songwriting doesn’t involve stretching 3 minute songs to 6+ minutes by spamming the chorus over and over again and re-playing build up sections. Every song is memorable and has its own character. Could be my AOTY as well, but there’s still a few things I need to check out before making that claim.

    Proggy tech death AOTY: Exocrine – Molten Giant. This album worked its way into my head and has stuck with me better than the Obscura, Beyond Creation, or Gorod, for whatever reason. Hayato is an awesome track.

    Best EP: Teleport – The Expansion. Vektor-twisted Blood Incantation-y death metal. Just got signed up with a label so interested to see what is coming up for them.

    How the hell have I not listened to this yet: Deceased – Ghostly White. Loved the rest of their stuff and part of why I’m not ready to call the Sabateur my AOTY.

    “I’m not yet sure how much I like this, but it intrigues me and I want more” award: Λ S T R Λ – (some Russian writing stuff, a pair of singles released this year). Weirdo atmospheric/avant/blackened death I guess? Their 2017 release is pretty cool too so I can listen to that while I wait.

    Disappointment of the year: Chapel of Disease – ..And As We blah blah blah. Had never listened to them before, but it was an initial AOTY leader for me when I first heard it and after a few more listens while I was working/gaming etc. Then I finally gave it a few dedicated listens where I didn’t have something else distracting me, I fell out of love with it. Too much pointless repetition that left me wishing the song would move on or just end too many times. A disappointment from initial impression, rather than something that failed to deliver on expectations… but that counts.

    Best single-musician release: Nott – The Wretched Sounds. Bleak, heavy stuff that I guess is sorta “deathcore” but that doesn’t seem quite fitting. (Honorable mention to Dysmorfectomy as well though, some good slam.)

    Most irritating song: Exmortus – Strength and Honor. Obnoxious chorus that for some reason they felt needed to be repeated over and over for a solid minute instead of just ending the song. Irritating because it makes me get up and go to the CD player to skip track every playthrough. Yes, I’m a grouch.

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