Editorials

10 Essential Metal Albums to Get High To – Presented By G Pen: Animals as Leaders, s/t

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10 Essential Metal Albums to Get High To - Presented By G PenAnimals as Leaders - s/tEveryone knows that metal and marijuana are two great tastes that go great together. That’s why we here at MetalSucks are stoked to be teaming up with G Pen to present “10 Essential Metal Albums to Get High To” — a list of ten metal albums that go great with weed (duhhhh)!

And as a bonus, if you use the password METALSUCKS at checkout on G Pen’s website, you’ll get a 20% discount!!! Who loves ya, baby?

Our countdown resumes with…

The Album:

Animals as Leaders
Animals as Leaders
Prosthetic
2009

Why it’s Vape-o-riffic:

Back when the iTunes Visualizer was still a thing, we utilized its then-dazzling display of visual sorcery to convince our buddy Bob that Animals as Leaders’ groundbreaking debut album was worth a listen. Tosin Abasi’s guitar pyrotechnics sparkled with electricity, the screen pulsated with every off-time crack of the snare and the bass wrapped it all in a warm, fuzzy, rainbow-colored blanket suitable for even the coldest of days. Needless to say, it worked like a charm.

The stickiest, ickiest green was, of course, a crucial part of that experience. Which isn’t to say you must be high to appreciate Animals as Leaders — or any album on this list — just that being in the right mental state can not only enhance the experience, but can take your mind to a place where it’s free to get lost in the music and explore every little corner of your own imaginary world.

And Animals as Leaders has SO MUCH to get lost in and explore. The dream-team combo of producer Misha Mansoor, with his ear for songwriting and knack for electronic flourishes, and Abasi’s avant-garde approach to guitar completely knocked it out of the park, creating an album so deep with sonic complexity that listening to it on a good stereo or quality set of headphones all these years later is like finding loose change in the couch — there are STILL licks and background noises in the nooks and crannies that I’ve never heard before.

Then there’s the absurdity that a record like this even exists; how the fuck did Tosin ever come up with this concept?? In the abstract, without hindsight as 20/20, it’s completely bananas that such a thing ever came to be: jazz chords, odd time signatures, neo-classical shred, over-stringed guitars, Meshuggah rhythms… how is it possible that all these seemingly disparate styles came together to form one cohesive whole, let alone one that would completely alter the face of metal?? Stew on that after hitting your G Pen, get lost in your own mental cycle, and before too long you’ll be pondering the very meaning of life on Earth.

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