BREAKING INTO DECIBEL: THE TOP 100 METAL ALBUMS OF THE DECADE +10
What you are about to read, dear MetalSucks Maniac, is an actual account of events leading up to the recovery of secret, well0-guarded Decibel Magazine texts. It involves a lot of ninja-spy amazingness and even now the authorities are closing in on the MetalSucks West Coast Bureau offices, so let’s skip further formality and get on with the story. I swear it’s all true. Here goes:
Over the course of my usual holiday-season stalking, I was able to um gain entry cough cough to this year’s Decibel holiday party and rodeo event at the Belmopan Sheraton in sunny Belize. Spirits were high among the Decibelerinas following another banner year, which closed with their awesome Top 100 Greatest Metal Albums of the Decade special issue. So I was able to glide unnoticed among the drunken revelers until I espied my quarry: editor-in-chief Albert Mudrian.
Mudrian stood distractedly touching up that morning’s no-polish manicure beside a ice sculpture of nude Jake Bannon. Few live larger than fancy metal journalists who work with actual pages and binding, so it was understandable that the tipsy Mudrian immediately mistook me for his valet and demanded that I resume fanning him with palm fronds. Rushing to my new post, I seductively cooed that the Top 100 issue was the greatest possible holiday gift to devotees of an art form so reluctant to celebrate itself. Mudrian spat angrily: “Dost thou not think that our scribes lavished accolades too unreservedly on those practitioners of the hardcore, metalcore, and stoner metals?” After conceding that I had indeed heard such talk, I quickly demurred, muttering something about the proliferation of opinions being exactly equal to that of stinky assholes.
It was then that, with a guffaw, Mudrian confided that it had once been Decibel‘s intention to publish not merely one hundred, but actually the top 110 metal records of the decade. And that space considerations lead to the excision of albums 101-110. A few hand-fed grapes later, he disclosed to me the location of the list’s unpublished portion. But, alas, as I began to coax from him the albums’ titles, his real manservant returned all disheveled and rubbing a knob on his head where I’d smashed a vase. I bolted. But then I hatched a plan.
First, I satellite-phoned Vince and Axl. “Meet me at Decibel Gardens,” I gasped after briefing them on my discovery. “We have to sneak into the lower depths of the DecibelPlex and hack into the Decibot. It is there that we’ll find out the identity of the other ten greatest metal albums of the decade.”
Hours later, as Axl stood atop a pile of subdued security thugs, Vince calmly hacked into the mainframe and activated the Decibot’s encrypted archives. (You thought those guys are merely a couple of pretty faces? Pfft.) Once the files were successfully beamed to the MetalSucks Mansion servers, the three of us withdrew along the compound’s south plaza and choppered out to safety (pilot: Gary Suarez, natch).
And now, 72 hours later and as federal agents – led by Mudrian’s merciless goon squad – have surrounded the MS West Coast Bureau, I’m unrepentant and secure in the knowledge that the writers of America’s definitive metal periodical did not disrespect or overlook the absolutely no-duh classic metal albums listed after the jump; they simply ran out of space.
And so, we present Decibel Magazine’s 100-110 Greatest Metal Albums of the Decade as stolen from the bowels of Decibel headquarters [with speculative commentary by ADF – Ed.]. Don’t thank us – just donate often to the MetalSucks defense fund. Click to read more…
110. God Forbid: IV – The Constitution of Treason (Century Media)
Before the break-in, I was insulted by the presence of two Killswitch Engage albums in the top 100 and the absence of even one God Forbid treasure. Now I feel better. Crime really does pay.
109. Testament – The Formation of Damnation (Nuclear Blast)
Recently lots of metal dudes I know have offered coded apologies to Testament by explaining that The Gathering, the band’s return to freakish awesomeness, would easily rank among the decade’s ten best albums – if only it’d been released a half-year later than June 1999. That’s true-ish, but does it imply that we’re punishing Testament with a collective snub of The Formation of Damnation because the calendar robbed us of an opportunity to lavish praise upon The Gathering, a slightly superior album that lies faultlessly on the wrong side of an imaginary line? Wait, what were we talking about? Oh yeah, Testament RULZ!
108. Behemoth – The Apostasy (Century Media)
I might be a bad journalist ’cause my fumbling of sensitive questions so embarrasses my interviewees that they disclose secret feelings just out of pity. One of the most shocking instances this year was the assertion of Behemoth front man Nergal that his fatigue led to some ill feelings toward The Apostasy. Also, I might be a bad journalist because of my tendency to overlook tragic typos dyke you cunt believe.
107. Soilwork – Strabbing The Drama (Nuclear Blast)
It’s weird to consider that Stabbing The Drama’s spiritual cousin is Bad Religion’s The Process of Belief. But surely, each is a flawless chord-and-melody album that’s hyper-charged by a new and kickass drummer. Only one features guitarist Peter Wichers; the other features the rhyming of ‘ludicrous nonsense’ with ‘incipient senescence.’ So it evens out.
106. Tool – Lateralus (Volcano)
The definitive word on Lateralus, Tool’s triumph among triumphs, belongs to MetalSucks mega-stud Vince Neilstein: “[Experiencing Lateralus] is like looking through a microscope at something for the first time and being transfixed and fascinated, then switching to a microscope 10 times more powerful and being astonished again.” Yeah, like looking through a microscope ON WEED.
105. Between The Buried And Me – Colors (Victory)
One of recent memory’s most spooged-upon albums, Colors simply must be in the conversation of the decade’s best albums across any genre. I mean, if not for the chops and melodies, then for the album’s daring, impressionistic re-interpretation of the Robert Duvall-Sean Penn urban crime drama.
104. Hate Eternal – Fury & Flames (Metal Blade)
That rotten/awesome Cosmo Lee of Invisible Oranges authored one of 2009’s best interviews (with the lovable Bill Steer of Firebird and Carcass) and then sashayed further into my heart with his endorsement of Hate Eternal’s I, Monarch to be among the top four metal albums of the decade. So it’s likely that Lee and I agree on Fury & Flames, too. Shit. Now I regret selling those naked videos of him to the yakuza.
103. Strapping Young Lad – Alien (Century Media)
I’d planned to pull a quote from a previous discussion on MetalSucks of the inimitable Alien, but instead I just scrolled down to read through all the comments that proclaimed me correct in my slavering worship of the mega-album. That Ziltoid is quite the sweet-talker, my stars.
102. Type O Negative – Life Is Killing Me (Roadrunner)
I’d planned to pull a quote from a discussion on Hipsters Out Of Metal! of Type O Negative’s awesomeness and, um, I was successful! From Sept 2, 2008:
It’s not that [Peter Steele’s Playgirl centerfold antics and poor grasp of race/gender politics] are standing in the way of mega-stardom for the Drab Four, who peaked on the brain-rattlingly awesome Life Is Killing Me, but it sucks that dudes chuckle derisively about the bedonged frontman every time I’m trying to blab about my dead-serious theory that Type O Negative is what The Beatles would’ve sounded like if Lennon and Harrison had converted to Black Sabbathism after Hey Jude.
Wow, that worked great! I didn’t have to even have to put down my hotdog.
101. The Crown – Possessed 13 (Metal Blade)
Remember that Halloween episode of The Simpsons where Homer returns via toaster/time machine to his own era and is confronted with a seemingly identical world – except that humans eat by unrolling grotesquely long tongues that scoop food from the plates? Gosh I totally know how Homer must’ve felt, ’cause one day last year I awoke in a disturbing parallel dimension where The Crown doesn’t headline arenas and my bed is not made of Cinnamon Toast Crunch. This dimension is bullshit.