And the Winner of the ToH Community AOTY 2K17 Is…

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When the Toilet ov Hell made its presence known on the interweb over three years ago, little did we know that it would help play a part in cultivating a few internet heavy metal talents into crafting a doozy of an album that would go on to garner critical acclaim from several fans and communities worldwide. You voted, Disqus tallied up the score, and now it’s my honor to present the award for readers pick of 2017: Horrid Dominion, the debut album by Arizona’s Winds of Leng.

There are countless veterans in the death metal community who can keep pumping out albums of consistent greatness (Cannibal Corpse, Exhumed) and newer bands introducing as many weird elements of progression as possible in efforts of carving a niche in this rusted community (hop over to I, Voidhanger’s Bandcamp page for good examples); but when can a band of newcomers drop a debut bomb so simultaneously classic and fresh that it leaves us all scratching our heads in surprise? In the year of our Lord 2017, that’s when.

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There’s “Chaosborn”, one of my favorites from the record. How many albums this year contain straight-up only rippers, no fillers? Horrid Dominion offers eight choice cuts of OSDM quality to make up our readers’ choice of the year. It begins with a foreboding intro and a somewhat doom-y first song, but efficiently rips the listener to shreds for each and every track until we end with “Lord of the Dead”, whose brutality grinds up bones to create the icing on an already macabre cake.

Since befriending reader Scrimm around three years ago, I was given the opportunity to hear their early demos… which helped steer me down the path to eventually meet them and witness part of their recording process. But more importantly I must tell you that because I got to know the members of the band, it’s with a MORE critical eye to which I hold them up to scrutiny. Winds of Leng bring it hard – with tracks like “The Colour” – proof of their ability to mix old-school sensibility with the right amount of intricate songwriting to win over a modern metalhead’s appetite for a stellar recording.

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Horrid Dominion contains flesh-ripping vocals, brutal yet catchy riffs, and some of the most tasteful songwriting you’ll hear this year. And let’s not forget a flawless mixing process by none other than Dan Swano, providing the perfect amount of crunch and clarity to its sound. To make it a more well-wounded package, I must also mention that amazing, horrific artwork by Alex Tartsus. All these items combined make up the must-listen-to album of 2017. It’s been a long time coming, Scrimm will tell you around a decade, and the wait has paid off in spades. To quote reader Positronic Brain, “And not just because it’s a hometown ToH favorite, the album fucking RIPS.”


The entire top 10:

10. Lör – In Forgotten Sleep
9. 
Archspire – Relentless Mutation
8. 
Elder – Reflections of a Floating World
7. 
Bell Witch – Mirror Reaper
6. 
Pyrrhon – What Passes for Survival
5. 
Artificial Brain – Infrared Horizon
4. 
Spirit Adrift – Curse of Conception
3. 
The Back Dahlia Murder – Nightbringers
2. 
Power Trip – Nightmare Logic
1. 
Winds of Leng – Horrid Dominion

 


2K16’s AOTY – VektorTerinal Redux
2K15’s AOTY – Mgła – Exercises in Futility
2K14’s AOTY – Artificial Brain – Labyrinth Constellation

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  • I’m a rank poseur and have only heard through “Audrey” but I remember enjoying it quite a bit. I’ll need to rectify my error over my incoming vacation!

    • Scrimm

      Hope you enjoy it

  • Lacertilian

    NOPE!

    • Scrimm

      BACKED

  • Howard Dean

    Horrid Dominion AOTY 1 year running.

  • Janitor Jim Duggan

    I disagree. Although Scrimm makes good music this is not my AOTY. Mine is The New Reality by Operation Mindcrime.

  • My first thought when listening to that Winds of Leng album: “this sounds like a fucking cassette! WTF?!” https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/a79dac1cf6409e977381a82d1461af4ed701ed819ae903ea2fb77c6b420ac86a.jpg

  • Brutalist_Receptacle

    NO ES CORRECTO

  • Howard Dean

    OT: Last work day before Christmas i.e. the end of shitty holiday-themed nonsense in the workplace (for 10.5 months, at least).

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/2d8ab8024dbf38def3a51e3877cad3a1f495098f6e2194f53ef26284f547901b.jpg

    • Dubby Fresh

      I got a bottle of Maker’s Mark!

      • GoatForest

        That’s pretty good stuff, but for a little less, you can get Larceny, which is a bit better, imo.

        • Dubby Fresh

          For the $10 I spent on the honey jars for the gift I submitted, I’ll happily take the Maker’s Mark.

          • GoatForest

            Ah. Nevermind. Carry on then.

        • more beer

          Larceny is pretty damn good.

          • GoatForest

            Especially for its modest price range.

          • more beer

            I need to go pick up a bottle of bourbon in the next day or two that is on my short list. But the liquor store I go to is like the Walmart of liquor stores so who knows what I will grab. But I am rather fond of Bulleit as well.

          • ME GORAK™✓ᶜᵃᵛᵉᵐᵃⁿ

            THIS ONE NOT BAD FOR $$$$!!!!!! JACK DANIELS NOT BEEN SAME SINCE LOWERED PROOF!!!!!!!!

            https://www.drinkhacker.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/JB_DO_INTL.jpg

          • Forget bourbon. See if you can find a bottle of Wolfhound Irish Whiskey and thank me later.

          • more beer

            I really prefer bourbon to Irish Whiskey.

          • I won’t hold that against you. 😀

          • Howard Dean

            Scotch >>>>>>> Rye, Irish, Bourbon, Canadian, etc.

          • Howard Dean

            Haha, but for rill. Well aged single malt scotch is the tits.

          • Tastes like liquid dirt to me 😉

            I liked Black Label Johnny Walker when I tried it but not so much the Red Label. The latter tasted like it had glue in it or something. Thing is I can get a fifth of Wolfhound for like $16 at my local liquor store. Black Label is over twice that.

          • Howard Dean

            For the most part, Johnnie Walker is totally overrated and overpriced. Red Label in particular is garbage. About the harshest scotch there is out there, and passed off like it’s decent stuff. No good. Black Label and Blue Label are good but they are totally overpriced. No reason to pay >$100 for a blended scotch. You need to get into the single malts. Blended scotches like Johnnie Walker or Chivas are hit-or-miss. Aged single malts like Glenfiddich, Laphroiag, or Ardbeg are where it’s at. Gonna cost you ~$40-50 per 750ml, but it’s totally worth it. Cheaper blended scotchs like Dewars and J&B (where you can get a half gallon for ~$30-35) are decent, too.

          • I’ll try one of the cheaper ones one of these days

          • Slimylimey

            Macallan (or Lagavulin if you like the peaty stuff).

            And if anyone puts ice in in a single malt, first ask them nicely if you could have one without ice, and then kill them so the contagion doesn’t spread.

          • GoatForest

            That’s nice, too.
            On that not somebody told me that Eagle Rare is really good, but I haven’t tried it yet.

          • more beer

            I haven’t tried that either.

  • JWG

    This is roughly consistent with past years for how many albums I voted for wound up in the Top 10, so I’m considering that a win (even though nothing I personally submitted cracked The List*).

    * How close was Couch Slut though? When I last looked (Tuesday) I swear it was #9 by my arithmetic.

    • Dubby Fresh

      It was close!

  • Dubby Fresh

    Pretty rad seeing what feels like a hometown hero make it big. Well-earned, Scrimm!

    • Scrimm

      We owe you guys so much

      • Scrimm

        Really wish I wasn’t working right now

      • Zeke

        Congrats duder!

        • Scrimm

          Thank you sir

  • Dubby Fresh

    Also, future pressings of the album need to have a sticker with this award on the cover.

    • GrungierNine0

      The only AOTY award that means anything.

  • frozengoatsheadupanunsarse

    Personally Pyrrhon and Artificial Brain would be my tops for metal this year but that’s not any of a knock on Winds of Leng. Horrid Dominion is aces.

  • Scrimm

    Holy crap guys don’t even know what to say, humbled and honored. Really wish I wasn’t working

    • Óðinn

      That’s great. Congrats, Scrimm!

  • This top 10 is very interesting. It always so cool to see how we all response to the music released by the end of the year. Thank you all for voting.

    Also, thank you all for voting Winds of Leng, they deserve all of this and way more <3

    • Scrimm

      Love you buddy

  • Lone Biker…

    If I was ranking the top ten Top Ten lists from readers or writers of other blogs or websites, (and then mulling over the redundancy of doing this) the above list would definitely rank #1. Nice job!

  • Elegant Gazing Globe

    Congrats Scrimm

  • Jack Bauer

    ARCHSPIRE made our top ten? THis pleases the bauer. Congrats to SCrimm and CO, WELL FUCKING DESERVED

    • Scrimm

      Thanks so much

      • more beer

        Your album rips, this is well deserved!

        • Scrimm

          Thanks man! More to come real soon

          • more beer

            Sweet!

          • You should let me share that one cover song you did

          • Scrimm

            No we shouldn’t

  • SomeGuyDude

    What a nutty happenstance that the homegrown band hit #1.

  • Óðinn
    • more beer
      • Óðinn

        Thanks more beer. I did say “Happy Holidays” though.

        • more beer

          You’re welcome,but that is just not the same.

          • Óðinn

            I know, I know. The cosmopolitan elites and their terminology. That’s just the way we say it. Your piety is admirable though.

          • I wish I was Jewish for real. I’d much rather celebrate Hanukkah than Christmas. …hated this shit since my early-teens.

          • Óðinn

            Their religion was first, and they have 7 nights, not just one.

          • more beer

            The secret to a Christmas is to move somewhere that you don’t have to deal with all of the family gatherings, hang out with friends and drink too much! I found it is much better now that my nearest relative is 1000 miles away.

          • more beer

            I despise Christianity, but I despise being told I shouldn’t something as harmless as that, because it isn’t all inclusive and someone might be offended even more.

          • Óðinn

            Haha! Well we both have our own way of honoring the holidays. I guess I’m not happy being told I have to say “M***y C*******s” when I’m not christian, and christians co-opted the holidays. The historical Jesus was most likely born in September anyway. It’s not even historically correct. Anyway, I support your right to say it your way. My sentiment remains the same. I hope everybody enjoys the holidays, no matter what their religious affiliation.

          • more beer

            To be honest I am not even sure there was some guy named Jesus, I personally think it is all a fairy tale. I just don’t like being told I can’t do something, for what I see as a bullshit reason. It just makes me want to do it then. Happy Holidays Odinn!

      • GoatForest

        What about festivus?!

        • more beer

          I would drink and celebrate Festivus with Jerry Stiller!

    • GoatForest

      Merry Crimbus.

  • Eliza

    No other album this year deserves this award as much as Horrid Dominion. I approve of this wholeheartedly.

  • A Winds of Plague cover band as #1??? No thx.