All That Remains – Top 15 New Wave of American Heavy Metal Albums
Mon, 29 Jun 2015 17:40:23
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These are the albums that defined the aughts.
The '00s were quite a fertile period for heavy music. So much so that the press and fans anointed the era "The New Wave of American Heavy Metal" or "The New Wave of American Metal." Same difference. MTV resurrected Headbanger's Ball, with Jamey Jasta of Hatebreed installed as the host. Late night TV shows, like Jimmy Kimmel Live!, were booking the bands of the era to perform with increasing frequency throughout the decade. Yes, those firebreathing noise merchants in The Dillinger Escape Plan played Conan and things were never, ever the same.
If you require more proof that the public and media hungered for metal equally, well, think about how Ozzfest ballooned, inviting heavier bands to play both the main and the side stages. The annual heavy metal summer camp was eventually immobilized and replaced by The Rock Star Energy Drink Mayhem Festival, which also grew exponentially and played sheds.
Most impressive were the sales numbers of these bands. Albums repeatedly went platinum and gold, with the likes of Slipknot, Killswitch Engage, Lamb of God and Atreyu notching RIAA certifications and awards for achieving monster sales. More notable was the fact that you could turn on the radio and hear these same bands on the dial and not always after midnight on specialty shows.
Do we even need to mention the Grammy nominations? It made us realize that people with their ears to the underground and in possession of a keen knowledge of the aggressive music scene were influencing the balloting, since extreme bands were notching noms. It wasn't as though this was further atonement for the Jethro Tull gaffe that still haunts the metal category today; it was an institution recognizing and supporting a movement!
Hands down—the '00s were a legit and rich era for heavy metal. These are the albums that defined the period.
11. All That Remains - This Darkened Heart
All That Remains have gone on to achieve a decent amount of radio success in recent years, but fans always come back to 2004's This Darkened Heart. The album is what turned began to turn the tide for ATR.
What makes ATR's backstory so interesting is the fact that frontman Phil Labonte was the original singer of Shadows Fall and the scene chatter always went a little something like this: "OMG, Phil must regret bouncing from Shadows Fall, since they got so huge."
Not. So. Fast. ATR went on to enjoy their own supremely healthy success, especially at radio, so it's doubtful the frontman looks back in anger or with regret about his decision. He carved out his own chapter in the NWOAM with All That Remains and it truly began with This Darkened Heart.
There was plenty of Euro metal riffing and melodics, along with Labonte's alternating bark and croon.
The title track and "Focus Shall Not Fail" won't fail you or them! The songs still sound fresh and deadly today as they did a decade and a year again. They don't make 'em like they used to.
Watch the video for "The Deepest Gray" from All That Remains:
'This Darkened Heart' by All That Remains is available on Razor & Tie.
See the other artists and albums on our Top Top 15 New Wave of American Heavy Metal Albums feature!