's editors' picks of 2015: part 2


Which are the best djent releases of 2015?

The moderation team goes through a lot of music in a year. As in previous years, we are concluding our "favourite albums of 2015" series of posts with a number of editors' picks: releases that we felt didn't get the attention they deserve.

The moderators are pitching a couple of albums to you that they feel are worth hearing, but didn't make the 'favourite releases of 2015' list. Contrary to our poll, which was based on site users' votes, the list presented below is based on the opinions of individual staff members, and it is important to be aware that it does not represent the opinion of as a whole. Since it is one of our main goals to be a neutral community platform, we feel that this disclaimer is appropriate and indeed necessary.

Our picks will be split across two posts. Today, we're publishing part 2, with recommendations for 11 albums, as well as streaming, downloading and purchasing options where applicable. If a free download link is provided, that means the album was released for free by the artist(s). All free downloads are 100% legal.'s editors' picks of 2015: part 2

WARP - Anima

December 29, 2015 - Self-released - Full-length
progressive metal, space metal

For fans of: Meshuggah, Devin Townsend, TesseracT

The joint project of guitarists Kevin Suter and Max Karon and vocalist Ryan Wall, formerly called "Warp Prism", always was something of a secret recommendation for Progressive Metal fans with a penchant for spacy atmosphere. 'Anima' presents a readjusted, more focused, take on the bands style, but in a way that enhances their musics depth. Suter and Karon trim their melancholically crawling mid-tempo grooves back to clear to the point riffs and on point melodies without sacrificing their ambient yet epic-breadth character, in combination with echo-y synth backdrops. All while Wall uses the wide open spaces as a stage for just as melancholy stories utilizing a style of singing that is more akin to giving a performance than to singing along, in a niche somewhere between Mikee Goodman and young Devin Townsend. Lending 'Anima' a whole new layer of unique dynamics and dramatic momentum.
All coming together in a straight played but delightfully explorative Progressive Metal album that might be easily overlooked because of its end year release but really shouldn’t be. - GeN2Mo

Stream the album from Bandcamp:

Stream from Bandcamp
Purchase from Bandcamp (digital)

Stömb - The Grey

January 26, 2015 - Unsigned - Full-length
atmospheric groove metal, industrial, instrumental

For fans of: Meshuggah, Uneven Structure, Vildhjarta, Gojira

Stream from Bandcamp
Purchase from Bandcamp (digital)

Nakaruga - Terramorpher

May 16, 2015 - unsigned - Full-length
industrial metal, modern metal, electronic

For fans of: Sybreed, Breach The Void, Neurotech, Cyberpunk

Long has it been since Nakarugas promising selftitled EP, but 2015 finally saw the release of their debut full length record 'Terramorpher', after the entry of Breach The Voids former singer Marco Romero. And the wait more than paid off, as what awaits are huge, intricately woven constructs of planar mechanoid riffing, melodies upon melodies and synth backdrops upon synth backdrops of almost Townsendian proportions; that sometimes almost, but never quite, spin out of control, just to converge into a straight forward riff or a clear and concise vocal hook. A construct begging to be explored for details and surprises, despite of its sometimes catchy and Pop-y surface. A balance reminding of Sybreed and just as much Breach The Void or Neosis, but spiced up with an overall harsher Metal basis, -core elements and a stronger air of chaos and cinematic breadth. 'Terramorpher' is everything that a fan of Sybreeds excessive-layering, wall-of-sound approach to Modern Metal could wish for but far beyond homage, unquestionably its own impressive entity. - GeN2Mo

Stream the album from Bandcamp:

Stream from Bandcamp
Purchase from Bandcamp (digital)

Change of Loyalty - Breathtaker

December 8, 2015 - Unsigned - Full-length
deathcore, groove metal, progressive metalcore

For fans of: After the Burial, The Korea, Born of Osiris, Structures, Reflections

Stream from Bandcamp
Purchase from Bandcamp (digital)
Purchase from Itunes (digital)

Frostbitt - Frostbitt

October 1, 2015 - unsigned - Full-length
progressive metal, alternative metal, thall

For fans of: Vildhjarta, Korn

Well, there’s Deadfall experimenting with a combination of stylistic elements of Deftones and djent... why not try that with Korn?
And while that may sound strange on first glance, Norwegians Frostbitt, in a way, simply show that the angular guitar screeches and squeals found in a lot of Korns earlier work find a not immediately obvious but nonetheless well-resonating point of connection in Vildhjartas skewed weeping signature riffing style. An affordance for fusion they take up on and play out with full consequence. Rounded and accentuated by short swerves into Davis’ singing style that flows naturally out of the exhaustive shouts and snarly, often borderline screamed, melodic vocals, sometimes relieved with well-placed softer sections. So natural, in fact, that the combination of mid-90s Crossover and Alternative Metal sensibilities and post-mid-2000s Modern Progressive Metal approach never even for a second comes across as gimmicky or forced. Instead what comes out of it is an extremely catchy yet haunting piece of music that neither falls into the pitfall of over-theatrical angst nor that of cold eclecticism. - GeN2Mo

Stream the album from Bandcamp:

Stream from Bandcamp
Purchase from Bandcamp (digital)
Purchase from Itunes (digital)

Mohammad Aljasem - Illusion

August 5, 2015 - unsigned - EP
progressive metalcore, instrumental, atmospheric

For fans of: Angel Vivaldi, Haunted Shores, Keith Merrow, Hope For The Dying

Stream from Bandcamp
Purchase from Bandcamp (digital)

Sound Struggle - Rise

September 25, 2015 - unsigned - Full-length
progressive metal, fusion, jazz, funk

For fans of: Animals As Leaders, Disperse, Novallo, Ever Forthright

Only one year after their selftitled debut full length album, Sound Struggle already deliver their second opus. Listening to 'Rise', something tells me that year must have been pretty busy.
As in its entire 1+ hours runtime, there is not a single second of tedium, meandering or filler. Quite the opposite. Fusing Progressive Metal, Jazz and Funk, there is melody and a clear dynamic drawn through every single guitar riff, bass hum, saxophone squeal, drum pattern, raspy growl, clean singalong, key stroke and synth bleep. Every note played is articulate and meaningfully embedded. Resulting in a tremendously playful but never disjointed display somewhere between the dreamy jazzy soundscapes of artists like Animals As Leaders, the rhythmic immediacy of Novallos funk escapades and the expansive yet chorus bundled dramatic journeys of Between The Buried And Me. So, if you’re itching for an original album of meticulously constructed melodic arcs and a rich bundle of musical styles, long enough to fully revel in every single one of them but stringent enough to still be an album of songs, don’t miss out on this one. - GeN2Mo

Stream the album from Bandcamp:

Stream from Bandcamp
Purchase from Bandcamp (digital)
Purchase from Bandcamp (physical)

Native Construct - Quiet World

April 21, 2015 - Metal Blade Records - Full-length
progressive metal, experimental, jazz, symphonic, fusion

For fans of: Leprous, Between the Buried and Me, Haken, Muse, Dream Theater, Cynic

Stream from Bandcamp
Purchase from Amazon (digital and physical)
Purchase from Itunes (digital)

Mechina - Acheron

January 2, 2015 - Self-released - Full-length
industrial metal, electronica, symphonic metal

For fans of: Sybreed, Breach The Void, Illidiance

Mechina have already made it a good tradition to release a new album at the beginning of a year. Another good tradition is that the albums do not disappoint. An effective combination of fast-paced riffs, catchy transitions, orchestral arrangements and impeccable vocal performances create a beautiful and unmistakable soundscape. Sci-fi and space opera themes permeate the songs and the addition of returning vocals by Melrose makes them stand out even more. This album will certainly appeal to the fans of fast-paced futuristic symphonic industrial metal sprinkled with slow lyrical parts. - Clarity

Stream the album from Bandcamp:

Stream from Bandcamp
Purchase from Bandcamp (digital)
Purchase from Itunes (digital)
Purchase the instrumental tracks from Bandcamp (digital)

Echolapse - Deadlights

September 25, 2015 - Unsigned - Full-length
progressive metal, progressive rock, ambient, atmospheric, melodic groove

For fans of: TesseracT, Skyharbor, Circles, Shattered Skies, Lithium Dawn, VOLA

Stream from Bandcamp
Free download from Bandcamp (digital)

Caligula's Horse - Bloom

October 16, 2015 - Inside Out Music - Full-length
progressive metal, aussie prog, clean vocals

For fans of: Opeth, Riverside, Karnivool, A Sense of Gravity

For a progressive rock band, being from Australia is almost like a seal of quality. Caligula's Horse play something that holds the middle between prog rock and metal, most strongly reminding of the ethereal qualities of Riverside's catalog and Opeth's calmer moments, but also with clear ties to the renowned Aussie prog scene. A lot of it is quite upbeat and hopeful sounding, but the main reason they are on this list is that they don't eschew grooving hard now and then (as in 'Dragonfly' and 'Rust', for example). As always, the vocals (clean only) are excellent. Perhaps somewhat unusually for prog, the album is rife with catchy melodies and 'sing-along-able' choruses. Some tracks will only take one listen to get stuck in your head! - benanne

Watch the music video for 'Turntail':

Purchase from Itunes (digital)
Purchase from Amazon (physical)
Purchase from Inside Out Music Shop (physical)

Check out part 1 for more recommendations!

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Not yet @metalbird, if it must be.

Soooo, was there a best of 2016 vote? Did I miss it?

Anyway, thanks for your interest. It is appreciated.
And sorry for those waiting to read a comment
about the editor's picks.Wink

Poor choice of words on my part perhaps, I didn't mean anything negative by it. What I meant is that I fully understand that that would stop you from contributing more than you do Smile

Believe me, it's not an excuse.
I'm poor, at least poorer than most of you,
but music has been always the pinnacle of my life, I think.

Ok, that's a good excuse Wink Too bad!

I don't think so, because my only internet connection
is through my smartphone. Which is a major limitation.

Maybe you should become an editor Wink We're always looking for moderators!

Imo, Omega Virus and Contr∆sts are missing in this editors' picks, not to mention Pomegranate Tiger. I would have listed them instead of others like.....=:-¶