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This is a list of some of my favorite black metal albums, one per artist, alphabetical order. Its not a list of what I consider to be the best black metal albums of all time, but the ones I like the most. I'll keep updating it as I keep discovering more of the genre.

Created by: Jericho Rehling | 21.05.2014



1. Agalloch - Ashes Against The Grain
Not a band that needs any introduction on this site. A masterpiece of stunning, richly atmospheric and deeply emotional folk black.
2. Agruss - Morok
Dirty, violent, and deeply disturbed blackened death.
3. Caladan Brood - Echoes Of Battle
They may be Summoning impersonators, but they pull it off very well. Gorgeous, immersive, and beautiful.
4. Dark Fortress - Ylem
A more melodic black metal that employs some unusual techniques and possesses a very unique sound.
5. Dissection - Storm Of The Light's Bane
A classic of the genre, one of the first black metal albums I listened to.
6. Endstille - Endstilles Reich
Cacophonous, dissonant, amazing, call it what you will... A very relentless, well-done album.
7. Immortal - At The Heart Of Winter
Another genre classic. To Blashyrkh!
8. Imperium Dekadenz - Procella Vadens
German band #3 out of 4 on this list... Absolutely stunning atmospheric black metal. Accentuating pianos and interludes compliment the black metal perfectly, creating a haunting, melancholic and beautiful atmosphere.
9. Melechesh - Emissaries
Fast, rich, and invigorating folk-influenced black. Plus, they're absolutely killer live.
10. Moonspell - Wolfheart
A little bombastic, perhaps, but it manages haunting and creepy quite well all the same. And his voice!
11. Negator - Old Black
The first black metal album I ever heard; hooked me from the brutal opening track. Fast, vicious, and absolutely merciless.
12. Primordial - To The Nameless Dead
The emotion in Nemtheanga's voice is unmatched by any other singer, and the grim beauty of this pagan black masterpiece keeps me captivated no matter how many times I play it.
13. Rotting Christ - Sanctus Diavolos
Darkly gothic, this album is a horror show, chilling and cold and frightening.
14. Shade Empire - Omega Arcane
Surprisingly good; an excellent change in Shade Empire's quality. Bombastic and grandiose, but not over-the-top (well, a little over-the-top. But it fits!), symph black.
15. Summoning - Dol Guldur
In my opinion, the masters of atmospheric black metal, there's no "best" Summoning album, as all of their post-Lugburz works are consistently brilliant. The first album I heard by them, Dol Guldur holds a special place in my heart.



Disclaimer: All top lists are unofficial and do not represent the point of view of the MS Staff.
[ More lists by Jericho Rehling ]



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Erik M. - 21.05.2014 at 20:45  
Nice list. Have heard most of these and I like all of them a lot. Let me know if you want suggestions for some style of BM.

Oh, and I would certainly call Omega Arcane over-the-top. And LMHSYF is the best Summoning album for me, though I agree about their brilliance. Hell, Dol Guldur is rated lowest (aside from Lugburz) on my list and it's still 8.5-9 material. The problem with that list is that like you, I also love all their albums, so the order isn't set in stone, so to say. Btw, I think Wolfheart is a little out of place here. It's been a while since I listened to it, but I would say it's mainly gothic with BM and folk elements. Check out my other lists as well if you're curious.
Jericho Rehling - 23.05.2014 at 08:03  
Written by Erik M. on 21.05.2014 at 20:45

Nice list. Have heard most of these and I like all of them a lot. Let me know if you want suggestions for some style of BM.

Oh, and I would certainly call Omega Arcane over-the-top. And LMHSYF is the best Summoning album for me, though I agree about their brilliance. Hell, Dol Guldur is rated lowest (aside from Lugburz) on my list and it's still 8.5-9 material. The problem with that list is that like you, I also love all their albums, so the order isn't set in stone, so to say. Btw, I think Wolfheart is a little out of place here. It's been a while since I listened to it, but I would say it's mainly gothic with BM and folk elements. Check out my other lists as well if you're curious.


Perhaps it is indeed over-the-top; I was thinking it was pretty on-line with the symphonic power metal that got me into metal so I don't it consider it too much. ;p

I think that some of the other Summoning albums are perhaps better, musically, but Dol Guldur remains my favorite, as it was the first Summoning album I was introduced to, and none of the others are able to captivate me quite as completely as it does. As for Wolfheart, I think it has a significant enough black metal element to list it here, though I agree its more gothic than black, I still consider it an element of the genre.

And i'm always interested in suggestions for new music. I've actually been using your list of death doom albums extensively these past couple weeks to discover new music; death/doom is the metal style I like the most asides from black.
Erik M. - 23.05.2014 at 17:17  
Written by Jericho Rehling on 23.05.2014 at 08:03

Perhaps it is indeed over-the-top; I was thinking it was pretty on-line with the symphonic power metal that got me into metal so I don't it consider it too much. ;p

I think that some of the other Summoning albums are perhaps better, musically, but Dol Guldur remains my favorite, as it was the first Summoning album I was introduced to, and none of the others are able to captivate me quite as completely as it does. As for Wolfheart, I think it has a significant enough black metal element to list it here, though I agree its more gothic than black, I still consider it an element of the genre.

And i'm always interested in suggestions for new music. I've actually been using your list of death doom albums extensively these past couple weeks to discover new music; death/doom is the metal style I like the most asides from black.


Yeah, whether something is over-the-top or cheesy is pretty subjective and to me power metal is often like that (over-the-top and cheesy, that is), hence why I think Shade Empire is over-the-top as well (due to their bombastic sound). Funnily Dol Guldur is actually one of my least favourites (it used to be my favourite though, when I just discovered Summoning), though it's still excellent. Your experience with Dol Guldur is pretty much what I have with LMHSYF (and the other two top 3 albums). Fair enough about Wolfheart. I mean, Summoning isn't exactly a typical BM band either, haha.

And yeah, I noticed your +1 on my list, thanks. I'm glad it's helpful to you. That's basically what it's for (though I really need to finish the list some time). Just comment on the list if you like to, and/or recommend me albums for the list.
Jericho Rehling - 23.05.2014 at 17:20  
Written by Erik M. on 23.05.2014 at 17:17

Written by Jericho Rehling on 23.05.2014 at 08:03

Perhaps it is indeed over-the-top; I was thinking it was pretty on-line with the symphonic power metal that got me into metal so I don't it consider it too much. ;p

I think that some of the other Summoning albums are perhaps better, musically, but Dol Guldur remains my favorite, as it was the first Summoning album I was introduced to, and none of the others are able to captivate me quite as completely as it does. As for Wolfheart, I think it has a significant enough black metal element to list it here, though I agree its more gothic than black, I still consider it an element of the genre.

And i'm always interested in suggestions for new music. I've actually been using your list of death doom albums extensively these past couple weeks to discover new music; death/doom is the metal style I like the most asides from black.


Yeah, whether something is over-the-top or cheesy is pretty subjective and to me power metal is often like that (over-the-top and cheesy, that is), hence why I think Shade Empire is over-the-top as well (due to their bombastic sound). Funnily Dol Guldur is actually one of my least favourites (it used to be my favourite though, when I just discovered Summoning), though it's still excellent. Your experience with Dol Guldur is pretty much what I have with LMHSYF (and the other 2 top 3 albums). Fair enough about Wolfheart. I mean, Summoning isn't exactly a typical BM band either, haha.

And yeah, I noticed your +1 on my list. Glad it's helpful. That's basically what it's for (though I really need to finish the list some time). Just comment on the list if you like to, and/or recommend me albums for the list.


Will do! If I can find anything you don't already have. Almost everything I've heard from the genre before seeing the list has at least their artist represented on the list. You even have Graveyard Dirt and Before The Rain, which are about as underground as I've gotten.
Erik M. - 23.05.2014 at 17:26  
Written by Jericho Rehling on 23.05.2014 at 17:20

Will do! If I can find anything you don't already have. Almost everything I've heard from the genre before seeing the list has at least their artist represented on the list. You even have Graveyard Dirt and Before The Rain, which are about as underground as I've gotten.


Damn, I was still editing my last message.

And yeah, at certain points I had even 2 or 3 albums/band on the list, but I eventually decided to have just 1 album/band because even now it's still fairly long. I wouldn't say Before the Rain is that unknown/underground. Bands that I think are more underground would be indeed Graveyard Dirt, Sadness, Celestial Season, Decomposed, Why Angels Fall and Whispering Forest, to name a few.
Jericho Rehling - 23.05.2014 at 17:30  
Written by Erik M. on 23.05.2014 at 17:26

Written by Jericho Rehling on 23.05.2014 at 17:20

Will do! If I can find anything you don't already have. Almost everything I've heard from the genre before seeing the list has at least their artist represented on the list. You even have Graveyard Dirt and Before The Rain, which are about as underground as I've gotten.


Damn, I was still editing my last message.

And yeah, at certain points I had even 2 or 3 albums/band on the list, but I eventually decided to have just 1 album/band because even now it's still fairly long. I wouldn't say Before the Rain is that unknown/underground. Bands that I think are more underground would be indeed Graveyard Dirt, Sadness, Celestial Season, Decomposed, Why Angels Fall and Whispering Forest, to name a few.


Ah, my mistake. This site is my only exposure to the metal scene, really, so I'm unsure about the popularity of a lot of bands. I know maybe three other people around my university who listen to metal sub genres other than the -cores. And I'll check those other groups out! Thanks!
Erik M. - 23.05.2014 at 17:41  
Written by Jericho Rehling on 23.05.2014 at 17:30

Ah, my mistake. This site is my only exposure to the metal scene, really, so I'm unsure about the popularity of a lot of bands. I know maybe three other people around my university who listen to metal sub genres other than the -cores. And I'll check those other groups out! Thanks!


Nah, don't worry about it. I'm usually busy with editing out any mistakes I made in my posts. I often post them too quickly, but I do want to correct my own mistakes.

Well, the amount of votes for an album and the popularity index (which also shows the amount of fans that a band has) are both an indication as to how popular a certain band/album is. I'm far from new to the metal scene, but I've become more active due to Metal Storm, so about 3 years ago I think. Sadly none of my friends (except for my brother) enjoy doom metal. which is my favourite subgenre. Though black metal is pretty close to doom for me. Oh, and definitely check out Sadness' debut. One of the most original albums I've ever heard. To me it sounds like avantgarde gothic/death doom, but I seem to be the only person on the planet who hears "avantgarde" in their sound. The whole album is on Youtube.

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