Guaporense top 100 albums (2019 edition)


It has been 5 years since I did my top 100 albums list. Although it contained a lot of my favorites I also think in retrospect that I was not "careful" enough in the selection of artists/bands as I notice now I left several favorites out and I did not order the albums perfectly. As well as the fact that I also discovered several new favorites since.

One who is not acquainted with my musical tastes might find it rather partial to heavy metal, I state here that in my view heavy metal is basically the combination of the catchiness of popular music with the grandeur of classical music and with augmented intensity. So, while I do enjoy most genres of music (with some exceptions), my degree of enjoyment peaks (and feels almost transcendental) with (good) heavy metal.

This is basically my most "serious" favorites list ever, as I carefully selected all the albums that appear here and carefully ranked the ordering to reflect my preferences to the best of my abilities. So, I begin my "best top list ever":

100. Iron Maiden - The Number of the Beast (1982)

To start out strong some real classic Iron Maiden. This was one of the first heavy metal albums I ever heard from start to finish and still remains a favorite of mine. Great album and an absolutely essential classic.

Some really great performance here:

99. Bathory - Twilight of the Gods (1991)

Quorton was perhaps one of the single most influential individuals in metal history: he had a direct influence in tens of thousands of extreme metal bands, with Bathory being perhaps the most influential extreme metal band of all time (even ahead of Slayer and Death if you measure influence by the number of covers in the metal-archives database).

This album, however, represented the consolidation of a new genre of metal that Quorton invented: "Viking Metal". To listen to it is a spiritual journey through gigantic riffs, such as in the song below:

98. Sodom - Agent Orange (1989)

Thrash metal is perhaps the first kind of extreme metal music that was developed out of a mix between hardcore punk and classic heavy metal. It is basically heavy metal minus melody and with aggression cranked up to the max. Sodom in particular is one of the bands that are quintessential thrash and their classic album Agent Orange remains one of the best examples of pure thrash metal.

97. Helloween-*7 Sinners*(2010)

Helloween is the most influential metal band to come out of Germany as they created a genre of metal called "European power metal" when they decided to be a more extreme version of Accept (as they described it in an interview). Today, "European power metal" is perhaps the most popular genre of metal in the world thanks to its accessibility.

Helloween is perhaps the catchiest metal band ever and is the band I have listened the most to in the past 10 years since their stuff is so enjoyable and is also rather "happy sounding music". Kinda like Iron Maiden with energy and heaviness cranked up and still being a bit flowery sounding as well. This is their most recent album that I regard as one of my favorites.

This album also has some of the best live performance on youtube:

96. Celtic Frost*-*To Mega Therion*(1985)

Celtic Frost is a rather enigmatic band. They began as Hellhammer with was perhaps the rawest sounding extreme metal ever during the early 1980s. To Mega Therion, released in 1985, represents the culmination of this artistic project which heavily influenced all modern black metal, death metal, and other extreme metal genres. It is indeed an special album, as there is very little that sounds like it: it kinda sounds like thrash metal without the thrash. A truly unique experience of super bare-bones pure metal.

95. Yes - Close to the Edge (1972)

Yes, I enjoy other genres of music besides metal. Another genre I enjoy is rock, in particular, Yes. Yes, Yes is good stuff indeed. Superslick progressive rock but without the issues that some other bands like Pink Floyd suffer from. Simply put, this is popular music of outstanding quality.

94. Destroyer 666 - Unchain the Wolves (1997)

Unchain the wolves indeed. That is some heavy stuff right there and perhaps the best thing to ever come out of Australia! It is black metal but closer to the traditional heavy metal sound without sounding like early Bathory. The spirit of true metal rises from this genuine classic.

93. X-Japan*-*Blue Blood*(1989)

X-Japan is the biggest rock/metal band in Asia. Yet, it is completely underground in the west. Their music is basically Speed Metal+Queen+Celine Dion and it rocks! Interestingly, they have this album played in the symphonic format as well, which shows that Japan lacks the prejudice against popular music that is so common in the west.

92. Metallica - ...And Justice for Ali (1988)

Because of 'tallica's massive popularity it is hard to think objectively about their music and so I often find myself thinking of evaluating metallica as if they were some unknown band called "matellica" instead. Overall, I find this to be one of their best albums since it combines doom metal song compositions with thrash riffs. One thing that differentiates metallica from other popular thrash metal bands is the feeling of "gravitas" that their songs achieve, which are not present in let's say Testament, Sepultura, Megadeth, or Anthrax.

91. Fates Warning - Awaken the Guardian (1986)

The progressive metal band Fates Warning is an act I have had a rather "troubled" relationship with in the sense that I first listened to their Spectre Within album back in 2006 or so and I hated the vocals and the dissonance of the opening track. However, after many years my musical tastes matured and now I have the patience to listen to a whole album before passing judgement. This band hides it's qualities and demands multiple listening before one can grasp it's music but eventually the return pays off, specially this album which is their best IMO.

90. Schubert - 9th Symphony

If one is interested in complex music there is no need to listen to progressive metal at all! Since there is this music genre called "classical" which is not really a genre of music but the formation of music into musical notation, so that music is written down as formal compositions. That also means that music for movies that is formally composed is also, technically, classical music.

While classical music can be perceived as too slow and boring from the perspective of a speed metal fan such as myself, I find that some orchestral works to be really great. Among those one that really picked up my attention is Schubert's 9th symphony. A powerful and complex symphony that features rich and complex melodies.

Despite my strong personal preference for distorted guitars and heavy percussion when I want to listen to more complex music I often go to the classicals. The reason is that classical music manages to be beautiful, melodic and complex at the same time. If you contrast it to the disjointed progressive stuff like Dream Theater one cannot help but feel the discrepancy.

A system of cells interlinked
Great list so far. I am curious to see where other Iron Maiden records end up. I am one of those people that think Number of the Beast, while perhaps an extremely well timed record, released just as metal was really taking off here in the US in the early 80s, is highly overrated, consisting of 3-4 good tracks and a bunch of forgettable filler. I like Piece of Mind, Powerslave, Somewhere in Time and Seventh Son of a Seventh Son a whole lot more, and probably Killers, too.

Anyway, keep it up, Guap! Great work so far...
"Thereís absolutely no doubt you can be slightly better tomorrow than you are today." - JBP

Great list so far. I am curious to see where other Iron Maiden records end up. I am one of those people that think Number of the Beast, while perhaps an extremely well timed record, released just as metal was really taking off here in the US in the early 80s, is highly overrated, consisting of 3-4 good tracks and a bunch of forgettable filler. I like Piece of Mind, Powerslave, Somewhere in Time and Seventh Son of a Seventh Son a whole lot more, and probably Killers, too.

Anyway, keep it up, Guap! Great work so far...
I (almost) completely agree with this. Piece of Mind, Powerslave and 7th Son of a 7th Son are my top-3 Iron Maiden albums.

I also like newer DestrŲyer 666 albums more than Unchain the Wolves. Also I'm quite sure there are quite a few better albums from Australia than anything this band has done First bands that come to mind are Ruins and Virgin Black.

Anyways, good to see an album list where I'm actually aware of practically all of the bands for a change.

@pahaK, Yep, since Australia also has produced the movie The Road Warrior (1981), I guess Unchain the Wolves is actually my second favorite thing from that country.

89. Entombed - Left Hand Path (1990)

Bringing in the big guns bois! While I am not a big fan of pure death metal there is some stuff in the genre that is so good that even I took notice. Amazing "dirty wicked" guitar tone in there and some amazing solos as well. Now, this is some wicked stuff indeed, its also very good material to scare people off as well like Cannibal Corpse but actually good.

88. Angra - Temple of Shadows (2004)

Angra is a national treasure. A very rare band that combines a lot of Brazilian music with heavy/speed metal. While it is categorized as progressive power metal I would wonder if one could call this a folk metal album given the amount of local music incorporated in their album. Anyway, this is certainly one of the most impressive displays of virtuosity in popular music and is my favorite Angra album (among the stellar quality of all their output up to this album).

87. Dio - Holy Diver (1983)

One of the best straight heavy metal albums ever is Dio's debut. After he left Black Sabbath, the timeless icon, Dio, started his solo band and his debut is amazing: one of the best straight heavy metal albums ever. I would say its only flaw is that songwriting might be more simple than the ideal according to my tastes but besides that, it is essentially perfect.

86. Lykathea Aflame - Elvenefris (2000)

Tremendous. As I said before, while I am not the biggest fan of the genre of death metal when something as special as this comes out, well, it would be a crime to not appreciate it. Made in 2000, this is a symphony for the 21st century: equal parts brutal and beautiful.

85. Bathory - Under the Sign of the Black Mark (1987)

And now for the first band to repeat entry into the list.

This is perhaps the quintessential founding album of the most extreme form of music: Black Metal. It is indeed an impressive album. Its songs are not the most sophisticated in the genre but the raw intensity of emotion is amazing. It is also impressive that Quorthon not only developed Viking/folk metal but he is also a major influence on black metal (although the two genres are deeply related since both come from Scandinavian "folk culture", as opposed to Western culture).

84. Kreator - Endless Pain (1985)

Thrash metal is a genre of metal that can be often boring and uninspiring, given it is basically music for banging your head. However, some bands manage to transcend the genre conventions and create something truly memorable. One of those records is Endless Pain, Kreator's debut and indeed one of the finest thrash metal albums of all time.