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

5. Oranssi Pazuzu
(Svart Records)
This year brought a variety of quality metal records, but none as off-the-wall and bizarre as Oranssi Pazuzu's Värähtelijä. The Finnish quintet produced three albums before 2016, but it's here that their formula of psychedelic avant-garde black metal finally reached its true artistic potential. Combining black metal with psychedelic rock is a novel idea in itself, considering the two genres are linked by tight, repetitive melodies, but the way Oranssi Pazuzu use it here defies the high expectations by mixing the nightmarish guitars of metal with the synthesizer freakouts and long improvisational passages of rock without missing a beat.
Dual guitarists Jun-His and Moit alternate perfectly between crushingly heavy riffs and otherworldly, effects-ridden chords for a winding musical journey that lasts over an hour, barely letting up for its duration. Where Oranssi Pazuzu can even possibly go from here makes one shudder with pleasure to think about, but if Värähtelijä is any indication, it should only get weirder from here.
Adam Nizam