There is so much heavy, extreme, and beautiful metal music being conjured all around the world that it can be overwhelming. While normally we personally choose and discuss which albums released were our favorites, we have turned the soapbox around to hear what our readers had to say about their favorite metal releases of the whole year of 2022.
Check out Metal Has No Borders readers’ choices below including Turkish heavy-prog folk, Brazilian stoner rock, and Brazilian groove-death metal. More lists incoming soon including Best Extreme Metal, Best Metalcore, Best Progressive Metal, Best Folk Metal, Best Experimental Metal, and more!
Voters’ Metal Album of the Year (Gold Tier)
Pentagram (Mezarakbul) – Makina Elektrika
Released via Sony
[Total Votes: 345]
While three decades into their career of bringing heavy music from the Eastern atmosphere to the worldwide community of headbangers, this eighth full-length record is actually my first encounter with the evolving act. Known in Turkey as Pentagram, but internationally as Mezarkabul, this project has unmistakably evolved from their reckless 90’s roots. Although there are moments within Makina Elektrika that boast the band’s original identity of cut-throat and cocky thrash, the group’s grandiose maturation is more evidently on display, revealing of range of metal from folk and heavy to doom and prog. Through the dense diversity, satisfying fistfuls of vocal hooks and adrenalized riffs are presented proudly. Oh, and there’s a Metallica cover closer if you stick around. We had originally honored this album with the merit of Album of the Month (Bronze Tier) in September, but with further listens after the band’s fans rallied hard for the release in our poll, I can concur that Makina Elektrika is uniquely badass.
Makina Elektrika by Pentagram (Mezarakabul) is awarded Voters’ Metal Album of the Year (Gold Tier) for 2022
For Fans Of: Orphaned Land, Dream Theater, Myrath…
Voters’ Metal Album of the Year (Silver Tier)
Apnea – Sea Sound
[Total Votes: 300]
Gallons of Fu Manchu-like fuzzed-out stoner rock in the fuel tank allows Apnea to take their grunge nostalgia sound to heavier heights in this new record. Although critics may claim that the band’s melodic, yet stripped down structure was already championed by the likes of early Silverchair, the simplicity and focus on enjoyable songwriting is a breath of fresh air in today’s competition for dense heavy music. While we initially gave the release praise as an honorable mention in September, I revisited the record after it’s huge lead in votes and absolutely dig the first half of the record.
Sea Sound by Apnea is awarded Voters’ Metal Album of the Year (Silver Tier) for 2022
Favorite Songs: “What Future Holds?,” “Peacefully,” “Deepness”
For Fans Of: Failure, Fu Manchu, Silverchair…
Voters’ Metal Album of the Year (Bronze Tier)
Claustrofobia – Unleeched
Released via Metal Assault Records
[Total Votes: 104]
Move over Lamb of God, there’s a new band in town who makes groovy metal sound extreme beyond expectations. Throwing a generous handful of death metal and thrash into the mix, Claustrofobia keep their intensity dynamic and interesting throughout their whole album. While the release initially missed my radar when it dropped earlier this year, I checked out the beastial record after it garnered many votes in our poll and was genuinely floored.
Unleeched by Claustrofobia is awarded Voters’ Metal Album of the Year (Bronze Tier) for 2022
For Fans Of: Lamb of God, Soulfly, Warbringer…