I only have a couple here, since I already covered most of my favorite albums from 2017. There are always a few that you pick up later, though, that fell through the cracks of the previous year but glimmer just as brightly as their previously-vaunted kin.
Unleash the Archers – Apex
I’m extremely picky about my power metal, moreso even than I am about my black metal; insincerity and glitz have marred the power metal legacy. Unleash The Archers is maybe the only contemporary band I know of who deftly parry the cheesiness that the genre has fallen into since its glory days; on Apex, they thrust home with a brilliant synthesis of classic power metal and the musical styles that have evolved since its fall from grace.
Lauren Bousfield – Fire Songs
Scarred by a house fire, Lauren Bousfield pours her grief into the music she knows best and dredges up something glittering, silk-soft and razor-sharp. Devoid of vocals, it’s shockingly emotive breakcore infused with classical instruments, a memorial for a scene.
Lingua Ignota – All Bitches Die
To listen to Kristin Hayter’s work is to receive the vision of a new and cauterizing reckoning, long-overdue. Her synthesis of traditions defined by rigid, patriarchal structure into a gut-wrenching ultimatum for abusers everywhere represents a watershed moment in the culture of extreme music, and music in general.