So here it is – our final list – the Top 20 Records of 2010, as chosen by all the contributors here at Thrash Hits. We calculated the positions on the Thrash Hits Top 20 by half-inching the scoring system from Formula 1 Racing, applying it to everyone’s individual Top 10 lists, and seeing what came out the other side. And to be honest – some of the results surprised even us.
In case you’re too lazy to click on that handy link we gave you above, with our scoring system the number 1 choice on each contributor’s list receives 25 points, the second place finisher 18 points, with 15, 12, 10, 8, 6, 4, 2 and 1 points for positions 3 through 10. This meant that while records that a lot of people liked (and so clocking up a lot of points even if they consistently charted at the lower end of the scale) would be fairly represented, so would the records that people loved, even if they received a smaller number of actual votes. We added an extra criteria that every album needed to receive nominations from at least two contributors to make it onto the final collaborative list.
In the event of and tied scores, the album that received points from the greater number of contributors would take the higher position on the final list. If there was still a tie at this point (and yes, it happened) final positions would be decided by the Thrash Hits editorial team bickering amongst ourselves. The final results were extraordinarily close, with the no.1 and no.2 spots on the list decided by a margin of just 3 points. The final result was literally decided by the final list of nominations that we received.
So in reverse order…..
20. Astrohenge – Astrohenge – (24 points, 2 votes) – review
19. Alter Bridge – III (26 points, 2 votes) – review
18. Motörhead – The Wörld Is Yours (26 points, 2 votes)
17. Four Year Strong – Enemy of the World (26 points, 2 votes)
16. Enslaved – Axioma Ethica Odini (26 points, 2 votes) – review
15. Bastions – Island Living (27 points, 2 votes) – review
14. The Tony Danza Tap Dance Extravaganza – Danza III: The Series of Unfortunate Events (28 points, 3 votes) – review
13. Bring Me The Horizon – There Is a Hell, Believe Me I’ve Seen It. There Is a Heaven, Let’s Keep It a Secret (28 points, 3 votes)
12. The Chariot – Long Live – (29 points, 2 votes) – review
11. Kvelertak – Kvelertak (29 points, 4 votes)
And so now on to the Top 10…..
10. Rinoa – An Age Among Them (31 points, 4 votes) – review
Hugh Platt says: “Rinoa were a post-rock band with just enough of a hardcore disguise to keep them out of the clutches of the beardies and weirdos. Their debut long player, An Age Among Them, is both ambitious and progressive, to the extent that the only song on it that dips below a 6-minute run-time, that of the climatic Memory, is left feeling too short. Rinoa will be missed, sure – but it An Age Among Them they sure as shit left an impressive epitaph.”
9. Triptykon – Eparistera Daimones (33 points, 2 votes)
Tom Dare says: “It’s Tom G Warrior. It’s the evolution of Celtic Frost’s creative mastermind. It’s yet another step forward into originality and artistic vision. It’s a doom-laden record of titanic heaviness that opens with a cry of “Satan! Saviour! Father!”, and takes in a piano-led track that begs you to “fall asleep in my arms, never to wake up ever again”. It’s an absolute fucking masterpiece”
8. Chambers – Old Love (33 points, 2 votes) – review
Raziq Rauf says: “I discovered this band on the internet after Gallows played a gig in the singer’s basement. I downloaded their roughly recorded demo and then I fell in love. Chambers marry heavy-as-your-mum vocals with some magical rock ‘n’ roll guitar licks and even made me dance a bit. We might have to talk about this band in the past sense soon but Old Love will live on. Find it. Buy it. Seriously.”
7. Against Me! – White Crosses (37 points, 2 votes)
Tom Doyle says: “Wall to wall anthems, the biggest choruses the band have ever done (yes bigger than ‘Sink Flordia, Sink’) and a personal yet still political lyrical approach render this is a genuinely beautiful expression of modern punk. The bores will continue to bleat accusations of selling out and watering down but if that means we are left with tunes as catchy and affecting as ‘Because of the Shame’ and ‘Bamboo Bones’ then so be it! Frighteningly, you get the sense that Against Me! are capable of even greater heights on subsequent albums – for now though, this is an absolute, 24-carat, nailed on corker.”
6. Winterfylleth – The Mercian Sphere (43 points, 2 votes) – review
Tom Dare says: “The Mercian Sphere is a savage and nostalgic journey through ancient Britannia, taking a spectrum of black metal sounds and creating something totally English with it. This is an honest and heartfelt expression that girds the loins and tugs the heartstrings just as easily, and displays a level of musicianship of potentially game-changing proportions. Britain’s best black metal record in Satan-knows how long, and the point at which a band from these shores demands the rest of the world start paying attention.”
5. Rolo Tomassi – Cosmology (43 points, 4 votes) – review
Raziq Rauf says: “I can never say enough good things about how Rolo Tomassi have stretched UK hardcore. With every release, with every show they play, they have made people think about music and that is A Good A Good Thing. It was always going to be tough to improve upon their debut, but they have done it. Better songs, more complex riffs and a general maturing of their talents. Bravo.”
4. Black Breath – Heavy Breathing (49 points, 4 votes)
Hugh Platt says: “Black Breath have given their collective obsession with Swedish metal and given it a crucial dose American swagger to tip it into something very special indeed. Not a second is wasted on Heavy Breathing – whether it’s the nasal, blackened tone of E. Wallace and F.Funds’ guitars changing gear into a deep punishing groove on ‘Black Sin (Spit On The Cross)’, or the swampy, sweaty sludge of ‘Unholy Virgin’, this album is 100% calculated to bring about bruises and bangover. A record of ceaselessly malevolent cunning.”
3. Cancer Bats – Bears, Mayors, Scraps & Bones (49 points, 4 votes) – review
Andy Parker says: “A wild animal is caged inside Bears, Mayors, Scraps & Bones but at every turn shakes the bars trying to escape its recorded confines.‘Trust No One’ is my track of the year by far and acts as a perfect reference point to CB’s evolved sound. Middleton’s guitar style does show his mixed influences Zakk Wylde trying to fit into a squat show in 1986 Washington DC, and it pack one devastating punch after the next. Their song writing skills have progressed at an unheard of speed finally providing an album that is solid end to end”
2. Deftones – Diamond Eyes (71 points, 6 votes) – review
Raziq Rauf says: “It’s better than White Pony. Suck on that and then let me tell you why. Yes, White Pony is the amazing album that made everyone take notice but Diamond Eyes is an album in the truest sense. You could name and sing along to (kind of) every song on White Pony but you won’t ever skip a track or rewind a moment of Diamond Eyes because it feels the most natural to just let the album continue.”
And so the Thrash Hits Album of the Year 2010 is…..
Dillinger Escape Plan – Option Paralysis (73 points, 4 votes) – review
Raziq Rauf says: “This is my album of the year. It wasn’t a hard choice at all because for me, the best album of the year is not only stunning musically and just generally sounds amazing but it also is contemporaneous. It needs to be of the now. It needs to fucking reek of 2010 and the commentary within and the reasons behind Option Paralysis allow it to do exactly that. The fact that Dillinger back their amazing recorded output with a live show that was equally, if not even more compelling is just the sensory-oriented icing on their angry cake.”
Hugh Platt says: “From the deceptively-gentle opening chords of ‘Farewell, Mona Lisa’ that almost immediately explode into a blitzkrieg of fury, to the sweeping and cathartic closing comedown of ‘Parasitic Twins’, this is a Dillinger album that tugs at a whole gamut of emotions within the listener, building on their past successes but still never feeling like the band are falling back on paths they’ve previously explored. With Option Paralysis, The Dillinger Escape Plan have not only crafted a record that sees them lose the Calculating Infinity-shaped millstone that they’ve never quite been able to shed (despite the brilliance of Miss Machine and Ire Works), but sees them shatter that burden indefinitely.”
And that’s it! Thrash Hits’ Top 20 Albums of 2010. Well done to everyone in The Dillinger Escape Plan. You can repay us by recording a new album and/or returning to the UK to play some more gig as soon as fucking possible.
If you missed any of the individual lists:
Raziq Rauf’s Top 10 (or so) Records of 2010
Hugh Platt’s Top 10 Records of 2010
Tom Dare’s Top Ten Records of 2010
Thrash Hits Contributors’ Records of 2010 (part 1)
Thrash Hits Contributors’ Records of 2010 (part 2)