Exclaim!'s Top 10 Metal & Hardcore Albums Best of 2016

1. The Dillinger Escape Plan
(Party Smasher Inc./Cooking Vinyl)
For their final full-length, Dissociation, metalcore legends the Dillinger Escape Plan gave us the expected unexpected, ending off their incredible run of albums with one final declaration of complete musical freedom.
Gone is the surprise of hearing "43% Burnt" for the first time and knowing that something big just happened; instead, this album, like their past few, raises the most eyebrows when it's exploring the band's quieter and subtler sides. That's not to say Dissociation doesn't rage hard and heavy, because it does: killer opener "Limerent Death," for example, is as heavy as this band have ever gotten. But songs like "Fugue" and the title track are the most surprising and, therefore, the most rewarding cuts, as they dive deeper into the band's flirtations with quieter sounds and electronica. It's proof that Dillinger were growing as artists right to the very end.
There are lots of people talking about how sad it is that the Dillinger Escape Plan are calling it a day, but really, we're lucky that we got this much out of them, given that they've always seemed to be on the verge of total implosion and self-destruction. Dissociation is a perfect summation of their career and all that the legendary band left behind.
Greg Pratt