2013 has had more than it’s share of memorable comebacks, surprising return-to-forms and well welcomed collaborations. From a Nirvana reunion featuring Paul McCartney on lead vocals, to the return of Black Sabbath with Ozzy Osbourne back at the helm, it’s been a great year for the metal music world. Without any further hesitation, we now present our list of The Best Metal Songs of 2013.
10) “Kings of Demolition”
After issuing two studio albums which were subject to a conclave of negative responses from both critics and fans alike, Skid Row issued a triumphant return to form with their new EP, ‘United World Rebellion – Chapter One.’ The opening track “Kings of Demolition” does an applaudable job at capturing the early Sebastian Bach-era sound which so many fans were first hooked on nearly three decades ago.
9) “Room 24”
Volbeat featuring King Diamond
Volbeat delivered another slab of rockabilly and heavy metal with ‘Outlaw Gentlemen & Shady Ladies.’ The band’s fifth studio album in all, this effort showed that Volbeat is still more than capable of creating music within their signature stylistic combination. “Room 24” showed Volbeat teaming up with renowned vocalist King Diamond for a knockout performance, which subsequently has been nominated for a Grammy award.
Pamela Moore was an established solo artist before she first became involved with Queensryche, but it was because of her role in the ‘Operation: Mindcrime’ series which shot her off into metal stardom. Earlier in 2013 Suite Sister Mary returned with her first new solo effort in seven years, ‘Resurrect Me,’ which showed the singer reviving her unique combination of electronica elements with a heavy metal core. This is especially true on the electrifying track “Paranoia.”
7) “Cut Me Some Slack”
Paul McCartney, Dave Grohl, Krist Novoselic, Pat Smear
Some call it a Nirvana reunion, others simply call it a knockout collaboration between Paul McCartney and the surviving members from one of grunge’s most influential bands. Either way, “Cut Me Some Slack” is a raw, energetic number featuring some impressive musical talent.
6) “Book of Faith”
Former Accept lead vocalist Udo Dirkschneider continues to press forward with his own band, and earlier this year U.D.O. issued their new studio album ‘Steelhammer.’ The album’s closing number “Book of Faith” could easily be named the second “Balls to the Wall,” with deep war chants and a familiar lyrical delivery transporting the listener back to 1983.
5) “Marching Into Battle”
Stryper have managed to deliver a collection of songs on ‘No More Hell to Pay‘ which could easily sit toe-to-toe alongside their best work. “Marching Into Battle” boasts some additional edge as compared to some of Stryper’s most recent work, as well as some blistering guitar work and piercing primal screams which hark back to such albums as ‘Soldiers Under Command’ and ‘To Hell with the Devil.’
Even though they don’t break any new ground with their 21st studio album, Motorhead continue to tear through anything standing in their way on ‘Aftershock.’ The entire album focuses upon the group’s signature combination of rock, punk, blues and metal, and “Heartbreaker” does an admirable job at starting off this Motorhead power hour.
3) “The Enemy Inside”
Dream Theater delivered once again with this year’s self-titled effort. For their twelfth studio album, Dream Theater applied additional atmospheric layers of sound and emotion to their signature style, providing a somewhat familiar experience for established fans but ultimately offering something truly unlike their previous outings. “The Enemy Inside” is a formidable example of that same sound.
2) “Age of Reason”
To have original lead vocalist Ozzy Osbourne back at the helm of his original band has been a dream of many a heavy metal fan for decades. Throughout the years we saw multiple ill-fated attempts at a reunion, and as time progressed the possibility seemed only more and more unlikely. However it finally happened, and Black Sabbath‘s triumphant comeback album ‘13‘ finally surfaced earlier this year. Songs like “Age of Reason” capture all of the classic elements which made those first eight studio albums so iconic: doom-laden lyrics, crunching guitar riffs, wild bass lines, a solid percussion section and Osbourne’s instantly recognizable singing style.
1) “Don’t Look Back”
Queensryche (more specifically the lineup featuring Todd La Torre) gave a triumphant comeback with this year’s self-titled studio album. How a band can make such a strong return to their original sound last heard almost two decades ago is beyond me, but that should not be the focus of attention here. And on “Don’t Look Back,” Queensryche seem to agree. They’re looking forward, leaving the negative past behind them and staring straight ahead towards brighter horizons. Between the song’s racing guitar work and the dynamic vocal performance from La Torre, “Don’t Look Back” is an instant favorite, and subsequently earns the title of The Best Metal Song of 2013.