Already more than a week into the new year and the obvious question looms: who will be releasing a new album in 2017? Well, there are plenty of new albums headed our way so without further ado, the top 10 albums I personally am looking forward to!
Xandria – Theater of Dimensions: In my opinion, the underdog in the Symphonic metal scene, Xandria are set to release lucky number seven titled, Theater of Dimensions later this month. Their last EP, Fire & Ashes, was a great little treat to the fans after releasing Sacrificium in 2014, while we eagerly awaited the release of this full-length album. Having already released easily their most intense single thus far, I hope Theater of Dimensions is not a let-down. The group claims this is going to be their heaviest yet most emotional album yet. I hope they live up to those claims with this hyper-emotional stance. It seems after the addition of charismatic singer, Dianne van Giersbergen, they’ve gotten heavier and more interesting overall.
Firewind – Immortals: Five years flies by so dam fast! 2012 marked the release of their last album as well as the last album with longtime vocalist, Apollo Papathanasio. A big hit against the band, this gave guitarist Gus G the opportunity to work on his solo career, that is when he’s not working with Ozzy Osbourne as well. Also set for release this month, Immortals, the first concept album the band has ever done as well as the first album with new vocalist, Henning Basse, there also have been a few singles released to promote the album. You never know what to expect with Firewind so brace yourself.
Battle Beast – Bringer of Pain: Releasing their fourth album, Finnish Power metallers, Battle Beast, will be releasing their most anticipated album yet titled Bringer of Pain. The first album with guitarist Joona Bjorkroth, it was a total loss when main guitarist, founding member and composer Anton Kabanen left the band in early 2015. I do not have high hopes for this album but I am looking forward to it regardless. The album is set for release late next month.
The Murder of My Sweet – Echoes of the Aftermath: Epic in some ways, dark in another, Swedes, The Murder of My Sweet, are also on course to release their next chapter this month. Known for their Symphonic and cinematic elements in their songs, this album looks to be a more straightforward typical metal approach. Less symphonics maybe? Less epicness? I guess we’ll find out later this month. The lyrical content of modern day issues in our lives has me intrigued. In the meantime, check out the single, Racing Heart.
Tool – TBA: It’s been a talked about debate everywhere for years. When is the new Tool album coming out? Rumors? Someone got sick what? I know their last album was titled, 10,000 Days but I certainly hope it wasn’t a precursor to this upcoming TBA album. As of last month, the group has confirmed that they have written two albums worth of material with only five songs up to the band’s high standards. To further add to the possible delay, lead man Maynard James Keenan, waits until at least 90% of the instrumentals are written which the group is not at that point yet. Will that wait be worth it? Will Tool have a new album in 2017? Everyone and their mother will have an opinion when it comes out and you can bet your arse that we will be on top of that as well.
System of a Down – TBA: You thought the new Tool album took forever, it’s been longer, over a decade since SOAD last released an album, 2005 to be exact. Any new update gets fans wound up and frenetic and the band is almost positive they on track for a 2017 release. The group mentioned that they are playing the best they’ve ever been and that they will not be associating themselves with their former work, meaning the new album won’t sound like anything they’ve done before. With the fans being older now and not really having a heavy presence for years now, there’s still a market of fans that have not been largely exposed to the group so there needs to be something for the new generation of SOAD fans, and not rely on their original works to make a bigger name for themselves again.
Eluveitie – Evocation II – Visions: The career of Eluveitie was unstable recently and unforeseeable after majority of the band, longtime members quit the band all at once. After drummer Merlin Sutter was dismissed, bandmates and good friends Anna Murphy and Ivo Henzi left the band as well. So fast forward a year later, and the new lineup was announced earlier this week. It has been confirmed that the band is working on a follow up to one of their older albums, Evocation, titled, Evocation II: Visions. Set for a release this Spring, it will be interesting with the overwhelming amount of new blood the album will bring forth. On a good note as well, the band re-recruited violinist Nicole Ansperger after she quit from the band for a while. Let’s see what the Kings of Folk metal bring forth.
Arch Enemy – TBA: Arch Enemy is one of those bands that won’t release an album until they are satisfied with the final outcome. Rather than cranking out album after album as fast as they can, their sweet time shows. They are aiming for a September 2017 release and will be the first album with new guitarist, Jeff Loomis whom the fans were ecstatic to see when he jumped on board. Nick Cordle left the band after the release of their last album so with Jeff, who has been in many other projects such as Nevermore, this leaves lots of room for more artistic energy and even heavier tenures. An interesting fact, the group asked Jeff to join ten years ago but at the time he was busy with his band. I’ll be honest when I say they lost their Swedish signature sound on their latest album but that doesn’t mean the album was terrible. They’ve been testing the waters and expanding more so their next album will definitely be interesting!
Alissa White-Gluz: Since we were talking about Arch Enemy, it was announced late last year that Arch Enemy vocalist, Alissa White-Gluz would be releasing her first solo album in 2017. The project simply known as ALISSA, she promises to deliver what the fans want in addition to being able to have lots of room for zero restrictions and nonconformity to any style or era. With members from Arch Enemy, both current and former, members of Kamelot, Misfits and more, this looks like it’s going to be the superstar album of the year. No singles or any audible material has been even leaked so your guess is as good as mine as to what the album will sound like. Though one thing is confirmed, she mentioned that she has heard her fans plea’s for her to do more clean singing.
Dimmu Borgir – TBA: Even though the album hasn’t been named yet this is who I am most stoked about this year. It’s been seven years since their last album, Abrahadabra, came out. Even though it’s a great loss that Mustis, Vortex and Hellhammer left, I am confident the seven year break is more than enough time for Dimmu to create an album worthy of being deemed dark, evil, heavy and symphonically genius. As the remaining members tended to their other projects, member Silenoz had hinted on his Facebook page #DimmuBorgir2017, which hopefully means the release of a new album. Not only that but the renewing of their contract with Nuclear Blast Records means that we are due for a new album one way or another. It’s like a wine that ages, it only gets better the longer you wait. Can Dimmu make the same claim with what will be their tenth album? That’s an accomplishment right there.
So far, 2017 looks to be an interesting and unique year for metal. Being the beginning of the year, it’s still too early for many bands to make a promise or announcement they’ll be releasing something this year. As the year goes on, there will be more announcements of new albums so for now I’ll take what I can get. Then of course the release of a new album means tours and shows! What albums are you looking forward to this year? Stay Metal \m/
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