Breach – Venom
To this day, there is not a single band that sounds anything like Breach. Starting with the album before this one, It’s Me God, they found their own sound of unique chord structures, skewed and dissonant riffs with furious yet odd beats that was and is rarely found in the genre. I think they perfected all of that on this album. Their last album, released after this one, Kollapse is also a masterpiece. But I must stick to this one being their most solid album.
Black Sabbath – Sabotage
Is it boring to mention a Sabbath album as one of your favorites? Maybe! But Sabotage was my introduction to heavy metal, and it’s rarely talked about as their best one. But to me, it totally is. I think this is where they manage to combine some of their coolest riffs (‘Symptom of the Universe’, ‘Megalomania’ and ‘Thrill Of It All’) with their most mind expanding songs (‘Supertzar’), and their hookiest melodies (‘Am I Going Insane’). And that laugh on ‘The Writ’. My God. I shit my pants when I first heard it.
Steve Reich – The ECM Recordings
Is it pretentious to bring a minimalist composer on this list? Again, maybe! Steve Reich rules, and he is heavier than most bands. Both me and my brother (Henrik on guitar and vocals) usually listen to ‘Music for 18 musicians’ when doing something that needs total focus. It also inspired us to use a lot of glockenspiel, vibraphone and marimba on our new album.