As a massive thanks for sending through new music and constantly keeping us up to date with everything, this year we have decided to compile an end of year list to sit alongside our very own which gives those who work in the offices surrounded by mail-out CD's and printouts of press releases a chance to shout. These guys are the unsung heroes in the music industry, as they tirelessly promote and push all of their bands to give them as much exposure as possible. For this end of year list we asked each to choose one album from a band their company represent, and another away from it. Some stuck by the rules, some didn't... but who cares! There are no repeats in the below list so go heed their advice and discover something new!


Nuclear Blast

Sarah Valentine

Blues Pills - Blues Pills

Another strong debut that mixes a blend of strongly nostalgic influences with originality and style. Elin Larsson just has this incredibly powerful soulful voice that seems to hail from another age and it works so well over Dorian Sorriaux's impeccable guitar playing. I spent a lot of time listening to this album outside in the sun this summer, it really is beautiful.

The Wytches - Annabel Dream Reader

This is just the perfect debut, I can't remember the last time I was this excited about a new band, it was probably aged 16 when I first saw The Horrors live in their waistcoats and backcombed hair smothering black paint on everyone. The Wytches are similarly incredible live it's a fuzzy mix of Tarantino style surf garage rock and dark brooding almost doom like riffs. I was a bit worried they might make the album a bit too polished and it's certainly smoother than their first EP's but it's still an incredible record. I've been listening on repeat since August. Kristian Bell's vocal is so bratty too and then at times he just rips into blood curdling screams. Spectacular.

Nick Azinas

Machine Head - Bloodstone & Diamonds

I'll go for the new Machine Head album as a first choice, simply because it's actually a really good album. It's quite aggressive, and MH introduces loads of new elements which make the whole thing really interesting to listen to.

Ne Obliviscaris - Citadel

Then, I think I will go with Ne Obliviscaris's Citadel. I loved their first album and this one is quite stunning too. There aren't many bands that sound like them out there!


Hold Tight PR

Lisa Coverdale

The Contortionist - Language

Watching a band mature, evolve and grow into the band you knew they could be is always exciting and The Contortionist have achieved that with their scintillatingly beautiful release, Language. There's an ear pleasing level of sophisticated progression from the band and stellar work on production by the talented Jamie King resulting in a record that just sounds HUGE. If you are looking for a soundscape-esque journey to envelope you then this is absolutely one of the top albums this year to delve into.

Didn't BTBAM put out an album this year? NO...goddammn it I'll have to pick something else.


Yob - Clearing the Path to Ascend

Four tracks, each over 10 minutes long, that suck you in and spit you out the other side of the Yob wormhole, leaving you feeling like you've been dragged through a hedge and left in a ruined pile. This is sludgy, doomy, genre mashing, atmospheric, progressive, aural suffocation. It's heavy riffage, it's warm and fuzzy yet bleak and soul crushing. What it is, is really fucking good and worth a considerable investment of your time.

Matt Benton

Empty Yard Experiment - Kallisti

One of those albums that is totally unique yet instantly, eerily familiar. A haunting and atmospheric blend of post-rock, prog-rock and alternative metal, combining sounds reminiscent of Tool, Anathema, Porcupine Tree, Mogwai, NIN and more, Kallisti is a cinematic journey of a listen. A record that's more than a little different and hard to categorise, and totally worthy of greater attention... keep your eyes out for the band travelling across the UK in December!

Solstafir - Otta

Though there are quite a few albums jostling for my attention in the Top 10 Albums of the Year list, this beauty by Icelandic post-metal veterans Solstafir has consistently been near the top. A beautiful listen - stark, dramatic, uplifting, melancholic, powerful, reserved - every and all of these things at once. Full deserving of all the attention they've received (and a contender for the best gig of the year too). Go check it out if you haven't already!


Devil PR

Lottie Hunt

From Indian Lakes - Absent Sounds

Having been lucky enough to work on one of my favourite bands new albums this year, this was nothing but a treat for me - From Indian Lakes are a completely raw and untainted talent. Self produced, completely self written, and only on this record having the stability of a label behind them. They have created all their hype themselves, and trust me, its justified. A band to invest considerable time in - started by a boy who grew up in Yosemite National Park, on a mountain without electricity, this music is pure - and pure brilliance.

Code Orange - I Am King

This band have crept up on me this year - I got introduced to them on this album and dear god, 'I Am King' quite literally terrifies me. Such talent for such a young act - if you have not heard this yet, you are quite simply, stupid. It's not what you could ever begin to expect. LISTEN TO IT NOW!



Garry Hutchinson

Inherit The Stars - Beyond The Beacons

This band are very special; gargantuan choruses with heavy groove riffage and cunning electronics think 30 Seconds to Mars meets While She Sleeps. The guys drop 'Beyond the Beacons'
this December and it's a real cracker. The Yorkshire tunesmiths will go very far -
FB Page

John J Presley - (No specific album)

People need to check out 'JOHN J PRESELY'. John is like the UK's answer to Mark Lanegan. Graveled vocals akin to Tom Waits and a hint of QOTSA's skuzzy cool, check him out at
FB Page


Black & White Music

Jonjo Warrick

The Beards - The Beard Album

While the world continually seems to be teetering on the brink of turmoil, four Australians have made it their mission to try and lighten the global mood. With offerings such as 'All The Bearded Ladies' & 'There's A Bearded Man Inside Me', The Beards have managed to produce well-crafted stadium rock songs, that will elicit smiles from the bearded and non-bearded alike. In such trying times, what more could you really ask for?

Mastodon - Once More 'Round The Sun

Mastodon have evolved their sound on every album they've put out, and they've done so again here. The pop hooks and direct song-structures of their last album remains, but they've also resurrected the immense riffs and weird prog oddity that made their earlier work so exciting. Add the cheerleader chanting and twerking videos, and you can see Mastodon are still having great fun making music that sounds like no-one else.


Major Press

Sarah Maynard

Run the Jewels - Run The Jewels 2

There's just no disputing the bombastic musical chemistry that Killer Mike and El-P share. Lyrical prowess and the biggest of beats make this album one that no others this year can rival.

The Menzingers - Rented World

Some thought the band's 2012 album On The Impossible Past was the pinnacle of their songwriting talent but Rented World proves The Menzingers can go even further in terms of writing singalong slices of rousing alt-punk. See I Don't Wanna Be An Asshole Any More.


Domino PR

Steph Knight

Lancaster - Journeys

For fans of Mallory Knox and Young Guns, we introduce to you Spanish alternative rock quintet Lancaster. This autumn saw the band bringing their addictive melodies and talented song writing skills over to our UK shores.

Road To Horizon - Faultlines

For fans of While She Sleeps and Bury Tomorrow, the North once again proves that it's to be reckoned with in regards to producing incredible talent, and Road To Horizon are determined to make this year one to remember. 'Faultlines' was recorded with leading UK producer Lee Batiuk (While She Sleeps, Deaf Havana) and is the perfect offering in expressing the bands capability.


Wilful Publicity

Anthony Giannaccini

Antemasque - Antemasque

It's been great to see Cedric & Omar (At The Drive In & The Mars Volta) back together. They've returned with a new project that's typical of the two, with even more accessible tunes. 'In The Lurch' is the album's stand out track.

Set It Off - Duality

If ever you wanted to hear an album full of bangers, 'Duality' is the one. A considerable step up from the band's debut, 'Cinematics', this is pop/rock/punk/whatever you want to call it at its finest.

So there we have it folks! An insane mix of albums, all well worth checking out.