Albums Of Year2016
The News

The Kerrang! Staff’s Top 10 Albums Of The Year 2016

*Sighs fondly*
Albums Of Year2016

2016: it was a hell of a year for music…

Legends returned. New heroes emerged. Some albums were years in waiting. Others seemed to suddenly fall from the sky. This was rock in 2016. We’ve told you about the albums that have rocked Kerrang!’s stereo this year in the new issue of the magazine, but here the K! staff reveal their personal favourite albums of the year. So, without further ado…

James McMahon 
Editor 

10. Spring King – Tell Me If You Like To
9. Happy Accidents – You Might Be Right
8. Metallica – Hardwired… To Self-Destruct
7. White Lung – Paradise
6. Frank Iero And The Patience – Parachutes
5. Against Me! – Shape Shift With Me
4. PWR BTTM – Ugly Cherries
3. Muncie Girls – From Caplan To Belsize
2. Camp Cope – Camp Cope

1. Architects – All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us

“There have been times I’ve played AOGHAU this year – in the office, at home, on my headphones – where I’ve actually felt short of breath, like the air has been sucked from my lungs. So many bands forget that heavy is a feeling as much as it is an amp setting. Not that Architects’ seventh record doesn’t contain beauty. Or grace. It is, in fact, the most in-sync soundtrack to where existence finds itself right now I can possibly imagine. Nobody was ever gonna top that.”

George Garner
Deputy Editor

10. Every Time I Die – Low Teens
9. Milk Teeth – Vile Child
8. Alcest – Kodama
7. Skating Polly – The Big Fit
6. Thrawsunblat – Metachthonia
5. Weezer – Weezer (The White Album)
4. Against Me! – Shape Shift With Me
3. Dinosaur Jr. – Give A Glimpse Of What Yer Not
2. Architects – All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us

1. Deftones – Gore

“Deftones have previously recorded not one, not two, not three, not four, not five, not six, but rather seven of my favourite albums (yes, I am the guy who thinks there’s a lot of great stuff on Saturday Night Wrist – seriously, go back and listen to it). Gore is not as immediate as a White Pony or a Diamond Eyes, but its slowburn majesty is exactly what impresses me the most about it. All these months later, I’m still listening to it religiously, noticing new things, and permanently changing my opinion on which song is the best. Also: let’s give Jerry Cantrell a standing fucking ovation for his guest guitar solo on Phantom Bride.”

Steve Beech
Art Editor 

10. Jimmy Eat World – Integrity Blues
9. Kvelertak – Nattesferd
8. Beach Slang – A Loud Bash Of Teenage Feelings
7. Honey Blood – Babes Never Die
6. Frank Iero And The Patience – Parachutes
5. White Lung – Paradise
4. Biffy Clyro – Ellipsis
3. Puppy – Vol 2
2. Against Me! – Shape Shift With Me

1. Balance And Composure – Light We Made

“This album is fucking awesome – it sounds like they’re taking influence from Radiohead!”

Sam Coare
Features Editor 

10. Biffy Clyro – Ellipsis
9. Green Day – Revolution Radio
8. Lonely The Brave – Things Will Matter
7. Every Time I Die – Low Teens
6. The Dirty Nil – Higher Power
5. Nothing – Tired Of Tomorrow
4. Metallica – Hardwired… To Self-Destruct
3. Hellions – Opera Oblivia
2. Russian Circles – Guidance

1. Architects – All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us

“The best band in Britain. The best songs of their career. The best album of the year, by a million miles. We love you, Tom.”

Nick Ruskell 
Associate Editor (Reviews) 

10. Green Day – Revolution Radio
9. Descendents – Hypercaffium Spazzinate
8. Metallica – Hardwired… To Self-Destruct
7. Architects – All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us
6. Conan – Revengeance
5. Mourning Beloveth – Rust & Bone
4. Blood Ceremony – Lord Of Misrule
3. Cough – Still They Pray
2. Deströyer 666 – Wildfire

1. Purson – Desire’s Magic Theatre

“2016, or 1976? The second album from Southend psych-heads Purson was a hazy portal back in time to a place where the trousers are all velvet, the shirts ruffled, and the tunes far-out. That they sounded like they’d actually come from a time before frontwoman Rosalie Cunningham was even born, rather than simply paying homage, made this an absolute treat for folk who still like music done the old-fashioned way.”

Matt Dykzeul
Deputy Art Editor

10. Kvelertak – Nattesferd
9. Beach Slang – A Loud Bash Of Teenage Feelings
8. The Dirty Nil – Higher Power
7. Descendents – Hypercaffium Spazzinate
6. Nails – You Will Never Be One Of Us
5. Against Me! – Shape Shift With Me
4. Nothing – Tired Of Nothing
3. PUP – The Dream Is Over
2. Architects – All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us

1. Modern Baseball – Holy Ghost

Emily Carter
Sub Editor/Editorial Assistant

10. Touché Amoré – Stage Four
9. Panic! At The Disco – Death Of A Bachelor
8. Metallica – Hardwired… To Self-Destruct
7. Green Day – Revolution Radio
6. Frank Iero And The Patience – Parachutes
5. Architects – All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us
4. Every Time I Die – Low Teens
3. Weezer – Weezer (The White Album)
2. Brian Fallon – Painkillers

1. Avenged Sevenfold – The Stage

“It’s all well and good when your favourite artists release something as brilliant as you anticipated (hi, Brian Fallon), but the biggest and best surprise for me this year came in the form of The Stage. Not only does Avenged Sevenfold’s seventh album contain some of the band’s most fantastically over-the-top songs to date – those horns on Sunny Disposition, a 15-minute interpretation of the Big Bang with Exist… you get the idea – but it’s also encouraged me to look into its subject matter, and I think that’s pretty damn inspiring (and also slightly terrifying… BRB while I throw my phone in a fire and go and live in a cave away from all technology).”

Sophie Bland 
Designer

10. Every Time I Die – Low Teens
9. Biffy Clyro – Ellipsis
8. Thrice – To Be Everywhere Is To Be Nowhere
7. The Hunna – 100
6. Nothing – Tired Of Tomorrow
5. Architects – All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us
4. Panic! At The Disco – Death Of A Bachelor
3. Balance And Composure – Light We Made
2. Lonely The Brave – Things Will Matter

1. Highly Suspect – The Boy Who Died Wolf

“I highly suspect you’re going to love this album!”

James Hingle
Listings Editor

10. Against Me! – Shape Shift With Me
9. HECK – Instructions
8. Nails – You Will Never Be One Of Us
7. Descendents – Hypercaffium Spazzinate
6. Deftones – Gore
5. Every Time I Die – Low Teens
4. Green Day – Revolution Radio
3. Architects – All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us
2. Metallica – Hardwired… To Self-Destruct

1. Napoleon – Newborn Mind

“You may have seen Napoleon touring with the likes of Bury Tomorrow and Architects in the past, but with a change in personnel up-front – hello, Wes Thompson – the four-piece have really come into their stride on their first full-length debut. Hardcore? Tech-metal? Prog? This lot are bending genres together with pure ease, highlighting that they’re one of the most intuitive bands currently operating in the UK right now. For me, it’s probably the most creatively crafted piece of heavy music this year.”

Jennyfer J. Walker
Freelance Writer

10. Waterparks – Double Dare
9. Twin Atlantic – GLA
8. Hellions – Opera Oblivia
7. Beartooth – Aggressive
6. Pierce The Veil – Misadventures
5. With Confidence – Better Weather
4. A Day To Remember – Bad Vibrations
3. Green Day – Revolution Radio
2. Architects – All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us

1. Panic! At The Disco – Death Of A Bachelor

“I’ve had this album in my life for way longer than a year (I got the stream back in 2015 to review) and I’m still not sick of the thing. Although we did have to take a little break from each other after I rinsed it for a month straight in the run-up to Slam Dunk… but anyway, the singles are some of Brendon Urie’s strongest to date – Victorious, Don’t Threaten Me With A Good Time, Hallelujah, Emperor’s New Clothes etc. – while the Rat Pack-style tracks are bold, brave, and totally different to what anyone else in rock is doing right now. It’s impossible to play this album without feeling better about life, and I’m so stoked to see what Brendon does next.”

Steve Beebee
Freelance Writer

10. Purson – Desire’s Magic Theatre
9. Asking Alexandria – The Black
8. Sixx:A.M.– Prayers for the Blessed, Vol. 2
7. Royal Republic – Weekend Man
6. Blues Pills – Lady In Gold
5. Metallica – Hardwired… To Self-Destruct
4. Evergrey – The Storm Within
3. Gojira – Magma
2. Sixx:A.M.– Prayers for the Blessed, Vol. 1

1. The Struts – Everybody Wants (reissue)

“This is an album that jumps for joy. It’s riddled with a starry-eyed sense of mischief, but also keeps you guessing as to where the hell it’s going next. Frontman Luke Spiller possibly is the reincarnation of Queen’s Freddie Mercury, while his band’s glam-bang-wham rock’n’roll does its utmost to make you smile. Sing-alongs there are many, and closer Where Did She Go is the biggest anthem British rock has seen since The Darkness believed in a thing called love.”

Jess Bridgeman
Freelance Writer

10. Every Time I Die – Low Teens
9. Boston Manor – Be Nothing.
8. letlive. – If I’m The Devil…
7. Martha – Blisters in the Pit of My Heart
6. PUP – The Dream Is Over
5. Moose Blood – Blush
4. Muncie Girls – From Caplan To Belsize
3. Happy Accidents – You Might Be Right
2. With Confidence – Better Weather

1. Camp Cope – Camp Cope

“Camp Cope are, without doubt, one of the greatest things to happen to music in 2016. Few things top that feeling you get when you hear a new band singing from the heart – and more specifically, from what sounds like your heart – so when I heard this Aussie trio soundtracking their statement chords with lyrics about feminism, friendship and social anxiety, it instantly became one of the most important records in my collection.”

Ryan De Freitas
Freelance Writer 

10. Touché Amoré – Stage Four
9. The Hotelier – Goodness
8. Weezer – Weezer (The White Album)
7. Every Time I Die – Low Teens
6. Pinegrove – Cardinal
5. Camp Cope – Camp Cope
4. PUP – The Dream Is Over
3. Modern Baseball – Holy Ghost
2. Joyce Manor – Cody

1. Jeff Rosenstock – WORRY.

“In what’s been the best year for music that I’ve had in a long time, this record stands out as the one that touches more raw nerves than any of the others. The range of emotions on WORRY. is incredible, and Jeff sings and plays them all with cutting accuracy. I can’t believe I like something more than I like a Joyce Manor album, though.”

Hannah Ewens 
Freelance Writer 

10. BABYMETAL – Metal Resistance
9. Modern Baseball – Holy Ghost
8. Against Me! – Shape Shift With Me
7. Architects – All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us
6. Nothing – Tired Of Tomorrow
5. PWR BTTM – Ugly Cherries
4. Frank Iero And The Patience – Parachutes
3. letlive. – If I’m the Devil…
2. Basement – Promise Everything

1. PUP – The Dream Is Over

“Thank fuck PUP came to save us with a second relatable album about being hungover, broke and miserable, channelling energy into destructive behaviour because you’re a deeply flawed and normal human being. When you’re listening to it through your headphones, four dudes sound like 100 people screaming at a cramped show. The entire album manages to be both angsty and fun (this is PUP) so what could be a better antidote to the swamp of 2016?”

James Hickie 
Freelance Writer 

10. Biffy Clyro – Ellipsis
9. Frank Iero And The Patience – Parachutes
8. Twelve Foot Ninja – Outlier
7. Night Riots – Love Gloom
6. Hellions – Opera Oblivia
5. Black Peaks – Statues
4. letlive. – If I’m The Devil…
3. Iggy Pop – Post Pop Depression
2. Architects – All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us

1. Every Time I Die – Low Teens

“There are several things that make my job at K! extra special, chief among them getting paid to interview Perry Farrell, having access to a fridge of ice-cold complimentary Tuborg at Download and, of course, being able to review a new Every Time I Die album. The momentary worry that comes with the latter, however, is that the Buffalo mob’s latest won’t be their best yet – a fear that’s bulldozed the second you press play. Well, never has that upward trajectory been more evident than on album number eight: a magnificent pile-up of world-beating riffery and heartbreaking despair.”

Sam Law
Freelance Writer

10. Insomnium – Winter’s Gate
9. Billy Talent – Afraid Of Heights
8. 65daysofstatic – No Man’s Sky: Music For An Infinite Universe
7. Anaal Nathrakh – The Whole Of The Law
6. Grand Magus – Sword Songs
5. Frank Iero And The Patience – Parachutes
4. Twin Atlantic – GLA
3. Testament – Brotherhood Of The Snake
2. Biffy Clyro – Ellipsis

1. letlive. – If I’m The Devil…

“The world seemed to be going to shit in 2016. But if one band seemed able to make sense of it all, they were letlive.. More measured and less volatile than previous releases, anything IITD… left behind in terms of sheer excitement was more than made up for by the Los Angeles lot’s matured songwriting, soulful texture and unabashedly political sensibilities. From the swagger of A Weak Ago to Good Mourning, America’s riot-shield smash, this was the sound of musicians growing older, but refusing to give up.”

Alistair Lawrence
Freelance Writer

10. HECK – Instructions
9. Modern Baseball – Holy Ghost
8. World Be Free – The Anti-Circle
7. Future Of The Left – The Peace & Truce Of Future Of The Left
6. Frank Iero And The Patience – Parachutes
5. Brian Fallon – Painkillers
4. Letlive. – If I’m The Devil…
3. Trap Them – Crown Feral
2. The Falcon – Gather Up The Chaps

1. PUP – The Dream Is Over

“With a title quoting a doctor’s verdict vocalist Stefan Babcock ignored, The Dream Is Over is the year’s most defiant record and the one that confirmed PUP’s pedigree. Hyperactive pop-punk (DVP) and snarling hardcore (Old Wounds) is packed in alongside the biggest post-everything anthems (If This Tour Doesn’t Kill You…) they’ve recorded to date. Look forward to them bounding their way up bills and destroying your favourite venues in 2017.”

James Mackinnon
Freelance Writer

10. Alcest – Kodama
9. Skating Polly – The Big Fit
8. letlive. – If I’m The Devil…
7. Royal Republic – Weekend Man
6. Moose Blood – Blush
5. Milk Teeth – Vile Child
4. Giraffe Tongue Orchestra – Broken Lines
3. Iggy Pop – Post Pop Depression
2. The Black Queen – Fever Daydream

1. Brian Fallon – Painkillers

“This will come as no surprise to any of the K! staff. During a year of deep personal losses, Painkillers was more than a means to ease the pain, but a lifeline that carried me through days and nights that sometimes didn’t seem possible to live through. It’s got tears, chuckles and tunes by the barrel load, and Brian is only getting better as a writer who can capture in a song those moments worth living for.”

Amit Sharma
Freelance Writer

10. Nails – You Will Never Be One Of Us
9. Vektor – Terminal Redux
8. Architects – All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us
7. Messenger – Threnodies
6. Dream Theater – The Astonishing
5. Oranssi Pazuzu – Värähtelijä
4. Gojira – Magma
3. Meshuggah – The Violent Sleep Of Reason
2. The Black Queen – Fever Daydream

1. Opeth – Sorceress

“If there’s anyone challenging the very meaning of the word ‘heavy’ right now, it’s Opeth. Sorceress reminds us yet again exactly why they’re in a class of their own – with thundering stonery guitars laying down fierce grooves that swan off into the most unexpected of progressive tangents. Every stunning second is executed with the most flawless mastery. The best band in the world? It sure looks like it.”

Tom Shepherd
Freelance Writer

10. Jimmy Eat World – Integrity Blues
9. Camp Cope – Camp Cope
8. Pinegrove – Cardinal
7. Joyce Manor – Cody
6. Night Verses – Into The Vanishing Light
5. Modern Baseball – Holy Ghost
4. Panic! At The Disco – Death Of A Bachelor
3. American Football – American Football
2. PUP – The Dream Is Over

1. Touché Amoré – Stage Four

“Stage Four sees Jeremy Bolm coming to terms with his mother’s death to cancer. The time spent cleaning out her old house, the songs he won’t play anymore, the voicemail he still can’t bring himself to listen to. Sad? It can be brutal. But rather than making you want to curl up into a ball forever, the band’s wildly colourful post-hardcore melodies somehow make this dark narrative into a spirited, stunning listen.”

Dan Slessor
Freelance Writer

10. Venom Prison – Animus
9. Trap Them – Crown Feral
8. The Algorithm – Brute Force
7. Norma Jean – Polar Similar
6. Meshuggah – The Violent Sleep Of Reason
5. Ion Dissonance – Cast The First Stone
4. Allegaeon – Proponent For Sentience
3. Nails – You Will Never Be One Of Us
2. Seven Sisters Of Sleep – Ezekiel’s Hags

1. Ulcerate – Shrines Of Paralysis

“Ulcerate’s unique brand of caustic technical death metal has been removing faces for more than a decade, and Shrines Of Paralysis is their defiant masterpiece. First exposure induces the belief that you’ve arrived at a subterranean venue to find Behemoth and Neurosis crammed onto the same stage, playing simultaneously and doing their damnedest to destroy each other, and this effect does not wane as you sink deeper into it. As bleak, devastating, and riveting as this stuff gets.”

Olly Thomas
Freelance Writer

10. Swans – The Glowing Man
9. Architects – All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us
8. 40 Watt Sun – Wider Than The Sky
7. Vektor – Terminal Redux
6. Touché Amoré – Stage Four
5. Cough – Still They Pray
4. Muncie Girls – From Caplan To Belsize
3. Neurosis – Fires Within Fires
2. Oranssi Pazuzu – Värähtelijä

1. Dinosaur Jr. – Give A Glimpse Of What Yer Not

“Dinosaur Jr. are one of the great, if unlikely, survivors of the grunge era. Unlikely, because they used to hate each other and gave a good impression of people that could barely be arsed to get out of bed. Great, because they’re still making records which go toe-to-toe with the classics they turned out back in the day. The fourth album since they got back together, Give A Glimpse Of What Yer Not is proof that this band have had not one, but two imperial phases.”

Paul Travers
Freelance Writer

10. Testament – Brotherhood Of The Snake
9. Avantasia – Ghostlights
8. Death Angel – The Evil Divide
7. Billy Talent – Afraid Of Heights
6. Cane Hill – Smile
5. Kvelertak – Nattesferd
4. Insomnium – Winter’s Gate
3. Metallica – Hardwired… To Self-Destruct
2. Against Me! – Shape Shift With Me

1. Amon Amarth – Jomsviking

“Amon Amarth only have one subject. Ten albums in you might think their Viking metal schtick would be wearing thin, but instead they just keep getting better and better. This brings in a few more trad metal elements. It’s also a concept album, but basically it’s an updated version of the beardy, axe-wielding berserker metal they’ve been making for the past two decades. So raise your horns and drink to glory, Amon Amarth and the most preposterously entertaining album of the year.”

Ian Winwood 
Freelance Writer

10. Muncie Girls – From Caplan To Belsize
9. Beach Slang – A Loud Bash Of Teenage Feelings
8. The Dillinger Escape Plan – Dissociation
7. Against Me! – Shape Shift With Me
6. Panic! At The Disco – Death Of A Bachelor
5. The Kenneths – Double N
4. Metallica – Hardwired… To Self-Destruct
3. Ghost – Popestar (EP)
2. Biffy Clyro – Ellipsis

1. Green Day – Revolution Radio

“As a member of Green Day’s core constituency for almost half my life, any arrival of a new album is pored over meticulously and sustenance is sourced from obscured corners – Brutal Love from the largely ignored !Tre! is one of my three favourite tracks, for example. Revolution Radio, though, is the first of the band’s records to bamboozle me. At first I thought it was a pared-back power-thrust in the spirit of 1995’s Insomniac set. But that was me being an idiot. It is in fact an album of depths, sleights, nuance and complexity that even now is refusing release all of its secrets to me, despite me putting in serious hours in its service. Anyone who believes that they automatically know what they’re getting with Green Day are wrong.”

Be sure to pick up the latest issue of Kerrang! for our full report on the 50 Best Records Of 2016 + our amazing Green Day Tribute CD!

Posted on December 7th 2016, 10:20am
Read More
Watch This Right Now
Black Metal Murder!
Watch This Right Now
Female Punk Pioneers