Lo! Pick Their Favourite Albums Of The Year

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We invited artists, labels and publicists to tell us which records or artists they’ve personally enjoyed over the last twelve months. The four members of Australian band Lo!Carl Whitbread, Adrian Shapiro, Adrian Griffin, and Sam Dillon – have compiled a list of their 10 favourite albums of the year. Lo!’s latest EP, The Tongueless, is out now via Pelagic Records.


Godspeed You! Black Emperor – Asunder Sweet and Other Distress
Is there anything Godspeed can’t do? Is there any reason why they shouldn’t be officially labeled the best band in the world? Just like every release, there are no faults in their latest. Only containing 4 tracks (which they had previously played live under the title ‘Behemoth’) and coming in at 40 minutes, this is certainly one of the shorter LP’s in their discography, but no less amazing. It’s also much more upbeat than their other albums, so if I feel like a bit of post rock without the tears, this is the album to listen too.” – Carl Whitbread


Cult Leader – Lightless Walk
I love the brutal honesty in this album. Great riffs and his voice is grating in all the right ways. The drumming is so ridiculously good! Relentless and technical without being too busy or over played with such solid groove and odd time signatures that aren’t forced. A classic example of less is more as far as guitar and bass go and one of the heaviest albums I’ve heard. Listen to it on repeat and carve a battle axe.” – Adrian Griffin


Torche – Restarter
Catchy songs, awesome vocals and great musicianship with the perfect balance of heavy. We were lucky enough to play with these guys earlier in the year and I feel they’ve translated their live sound to record quite well with this release. Hire yourself a Cadillac and put this on repeat all the way to Vegas.” – Adrian Shapiro


Black Breath – Slaves Beyond Death
Black Breath seem to have taken a turn on this album – leaning slightly away from blackened hardcore vibes on previous releases to more of a straight up 90’s metal sound. At first I was a bit hesitant about it, but once things get going, you don’t even care about the sound shift and realise you’re listening to an amazing metal record. The vocals are slightly harsher and there’s some cracking riffs throughout. Makes me wish I still had long hair.” – Carl Whitbread


Förstöra – All That Will Save or Destroy Us
This band is hands down my favourite Aussie band at the moment. We’ve done two tours with the guys this year and they destroy. Super aggressive with great riffs and powerful energy throughout which translates into their live show as well. Lot’s of Raised Fist meets Converge influences happening here. Definitely a band to keep your eyes on.” – Adrian Shapiro


Mutoid Man – Bleeder
I will check out anything that anyone from Converge is involved with so when I heard about Ben Koller playing in Mutoid Man I was curious. First listen was cool and had me interested but after a few listens the album gets better and better, with many layers poking their head out. Between ultra melodic vocal harmonies and poppy hooks they sandwich ultra heavy, low tuned pummelling riffage and completely spaz parts that leave me nodding my head and chuckling. Definitely different to what I was expecting in an excellent way.” – Adrian Griffin


Harlott – Proliferation
I only heard about this Melbourne band recently and was impressed from the first speed picking I heard. Moments of classic thrash fused with new school tech and world class production make this album a winner for me. Very keen to check them out live as soon as possible.” – Adrian Griffin


We Lost the Sea – Departure Songs
This is the first release for We Lost the Sea after their vocalist (and our friend) Chris Torpy took his own life, and they decided to continue on as an instrumental band. Departure Songs is a concept album, focusing on people throughout history who have sacrificed their lives for the greater good. Each track explores a different event, along with matching artwork to go with each song. I found listening to this a really emotional journey but also a fascinating one, reading into each story really made me connect with these songs even more. A fantastic Australian post rock release.” – Carl Whitbread


Cattle Decapitation – The Anthropocene Extinction
Many metal vocalists can say they project anger and passion through their larynx but cattle decapitation’s travis can conjure up the most disgusting and melodic gurgling of any modern front man. This album redefines the death metal genre.” – Sam Dillon


Refused – Freedom
I will admit, I was very skeptical about this album. After Shape of Punk and an amazing documentary about the bands breakup, I was kind of annoyed to hear they were getting back together. I initially listened to a handful of tracks they released and wasn’t super impressed. There were good parts, but I couldn’t get into the songs completely. I was assured by a friend and I should just keep listening and it will grow on me and I needed to detach myself from their previous stuff, and sure enough that’s exactly what happened. Ok, it’s no Shape of Punk to come, but it is a solid rock album with catchy songs, and lots of interesting parts. I actually found myself listening to this more than any other album this year.” – Carl Whitbread

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