In no particular order, here are a bunch of tours that made our collective nipples hard in 2009:

Meshuggah + Cynic +The Faceless: The original incarnation of the prog metal boner / wet dream tour, but the 2010 incarnation (BTBAM, Townsend, Cynic, Scale the Summit) is gonna give it a run for its money.

Opeth + Enslaved: There really isn’t much to say about this… a perfect pairing! Opeth were at the top of their game and Enslaved were coming off the success of Vertebrae.

Mastodon + Kylesa + Intronaut: This tour only came to small venues 1/5th or 1/10th the size of the venues Mastodon would fill on their next tour, and felt all the more special because Mastodon played their new opus Crack the Skye start to finish. Though they’d do this again on their headlining tour with Dethklok, seeing it in such an intimate setting can’t be beat.

Mastodon + Dethklok + Converge + High on Fire: See above. But surprisingly to many, Dethklok was thoroughly entertaining… it wasn’t just the Mastodon show that everyone was expecting.

Down + Melvins + Weedeater: A stoner’s wet dream! An interesting match that looks odd on paper but totally worked in person.

Gojira headlining tour in May (with the Chariot): Months and months of listening to The Way of All Flesh – after years of seeing Gojira solely in support slots – culminated in this totally awesome, totally mind-blowing tour. Like an orgasm, only better.

Gojira’s Metallica off-date headline shows in September: See above, except multiply it by 10. Seriously, it was THAT great.

Alice in Chains: Jerry and co. still know how to do it live, and frontman William DuVall really seems comfortable now after years of touring with the band. That AIC had new material to support and play live made it even better.

Soilwork + Swallow the Sun + Darkane: Soilwork’s first American dates with Peter Wichers back on the axe didn’t disappoint, nor did fellow Swedes Darkane or Finnish melo-doomsters Swallow the Sun.

The Scion Rock Fest in Atlanta: Everything about this festival was well done, from the choice of bands to the laid-back atmosphere to the free ticket price. Let’s hope for another one in 2010.

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