Top 10 Hard Rock & Heavy Metal Albums of 2011

1.  Anthrax – Worship Music I strongly believe that Anthrax has now officially entered their prime.  This amazing thrash album is the reason why.  Every track on Worship Music is a bloody hit.  I can see this one easily being a top album of the last decade.

2.  Machine Head – Unto the Locust  This is one of the few bands that still brings it in the way that Pantera had meant for it to be brought.  As far as I am concerned, they carry the groove metal torch.

3.  Megadeth – Th1rt3en  Over the last couple years we have learned that Chris Broderick is an amazing lead guitarist and excellent fit for Dave Mustaine’s band.  There is also an added bonus as Dave Ellefson is back and kicking ass on Th1rt3en.

4.  Foo Fighters – Wasting Light  Dave Grohl is hard rock, and Dave Grohl is all metal despite his yucky grunge roots.  This band is gushing with so much talent that it is scary.

5.  Dream Theater – A Dramatic Turn of Events  So, Mike Portnoy is gone.  Get over it and stop crying.  It is time to truly respect this new record.  It is nothing but a progressive powerhouse.

6.  Motorhead – The World is Yours  \m/ Lemmy is god \m/

7.  Amon Amarth – Surtur Rising  There is something so soothing about Scandinavian Viking metal.  The guitar riffs are heavy and thunderous yet highly melodic, while the drums are flat out intoxicating, showcasing a groove that is purely sinister.

8.  Sebastian Bach – Kicking & Screaming  Bach is still an awesome and underrated vocalist (and he certainly had a tough year between divorce and losing his home to a flood).  Previous release Angel Down was a bit heavier, but this still rocks with up-and-coming guitarist Nick Sterling energizing the rock legend.

9.  Black Country Communion – Black Country Communion 2  Another hard rock blues-oriented supergroup.  I say, keep them coming.  This is BCC’s second release in 9 months and it is even better than the first.

10.  Mr. Big – What If…  Paul Gilbert is a guitar god and makes a triumphant return to Mr. Big.  And now, they are the best they have ever been.

Honorable Mentions:  Five Finger Death Punch – American Capitalist,  Charred Walls of the Damned – Cold Winds on Timeless Days, & Mastodon – The Hunter

Dishonorable Mentions:  Lou Reed & Metallica – Lulu, Primus – Green Naugahyde

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