After a past few years that offered slim picking in terms of quality new grindcore, 2018 was a banner year for our most malevolent micro-genre. Rather then boring you with a rote list of our favorite albums (because who has time to listen to full albums nowadays?) we decided to hit you with our TOP 18 GRINDCORE SONGS OF 2018! Get it? 18 for 18? Eh, let’s just get this thing over with.
18. Cognizant – “Oratorio In Grey” – Tribute to Discordance Axis
Fact: If you pair a technical grindcore band with drummer Bryan Farjardo and you cover a Discordance Axis song, I will include in my year-end best of list. It’s a fact, look it up.
17. Monnier – “The Abyss” – s/t
Probably the only album from the early part of this year that I remembered to include on this list and I’m glad I did. Relapse-worship grindcore done violently right.
16. Kluvim – “Negif” – Lo Yikre
The opening track on this Israeli grind unit’s debut album really establishes who they are and what they’re about: American-style grind/violence that nimbly moves back and forth between noisy fast parts and ominous sludge/doom. Mazel.
15. Warfuck – “Lixiviat” – This Was Supposed To Be Fun
Although this entire LP is littered with JUMPDAFUCKUP mosh parts worthy of any Nasum fan’s serious attention, I chose “Lixiviat” because it begins with one of the most intense blast parts of the band’s discography and then ends with a perfectly executed melodic passage also reminiscent of Mieszko and company. Song dynamics, kids, it’s what music is all about.
14. Inopexia – “Смыв” – Обычный день
Look, I’m not sure what’s going on in Russia right now just as much as I’m not sure what’s going on in this country either, but if you like toilet gurgles and indiscernible guitar violence, well then, you can just make this your number one right here.
13. Durian – “Hospital Bills” – Everything Faster Than Everything Else
Though it truly pains me to heap praise on any musical project that Ben Wood is a part of (BTW Ben, happy birthday, dude! 40 is the new 30!), I must say this whole EP slaps, all two minutes of it. At eleven seconds in length, “Hospital Bills” can sort of be seen as the “epic power ballad” of the album.
12. P.L.F. – “Blare of Interminable Tinnitus” – Jackhammering Deathblow of Nightmarish Trepidation
I really hope this band understands how truly annoying it is to type out their song names and album titles, but something tells me they do that on purpose to frustrate nerds like myself. Either way, this whole album RIPS, proving that grind is in fact an extension of thrash rather than death metal. And no song exemplifies that more than their lead single, “Blare of Intermittent Interminable Interspecies-erotica Tennis Tennitus Ten Items Or Less Of Death”.
11. Incinerated – “It’s Just Cheese And Meat” – Split w/ Deterioration
When an Australian goregrind band decides to hit you with a bowel-destroying slam, it’s one thing. But when that band decides to name the song “It’s Just Cheese and Meat,” well then, my friend, you just know it’s on.
10. Daggra – “Setsuna” – Setsuna
It’s funny, in my review of the entire album a few months ago I talked about how much this song sounds like Gridlink and after the review was posted I was informed that it actually featured a guest spot by one of Gridlink’s members. Just a little insight into the master’s level research I put into my journalism.
9. Whoresnation – “Gueules Cassees” – Mephitism
That OTHER French grind titan who put out a full-length this year, this band really just does not fuck around whatsoever. It’s like if Insect Warfare moved to the Parisian countryside and started a winery. Doesn’t hurt that they put a nice little two-step in the middle of this blastfest. God, I’m such a sucker for those things.
8. Deterioration – “Car Battery Interogation” – Lupara Bianca
Yoooo. The stop-start intonation of the intro is one of the catchiest pieces of music I’ve encountered all year, metal or otherwise. This is one of those albums that’s so consistently good you don’t really realize it until you listen to something else of lesser quality.
7. Suffering Quota – “Fear (Of History Repeating)” – Life In Disgust
Ahh, how this whole song revolves around that one really “Discordance Axis” chord and then ends with one of those D-beat Napalm Death-like two-steps. Easily the best song on one of my favorite albums of the year, this track will be going onto my personal playlist of songs I listen to and go “Wow, that’s a good song.”
6. Beasters – “Invasive Empathy” – Intrinsically Worthless
Knowing that the dudes in this band can be pretty strict grindcore elitists, I was pleasantly surprised with how creative their new music is. You can definitely tell that this band shares members with Congenital Death, one of the most unique fast bands to come out of Philly in the past decade. This track here is a great example of the sort of interesting arc that most of the songs on this album bring: caveman beatdowns, melodic fluctuations and even a damn ska beat!
5. No/Más – “Fuck You” – Raíz Del Mal
Ground did not release a new album this year, so someone had to claim the “moshworthy grind” throne of 2018 and did these Baltimore boys ever take it. Equal parts Sepultura, Ghoul and Carcass, “Fuck You” is no doubt the grooviest song on this list, which might upset some of you neckbeards but will undoubtedly please those of us who don’t use 4chan.
4. Needful Things – “So Shut The Fuck Up” – Deception
A few months ago I reviewed this entire album on this very website and used the word “brutal” about ten thousand times, but once you hear the music, you would understand that such a tactic was justified. This band is so buttfuckingly brutal that even when they slow it down to a Wolverine Blues-type tempo, it’s still more vicious than a good ninety percent of the bands out there. But don’t worry, they make sure to get in a nice little blast beat in those last eight seconds, just to really make sure they have annihilated the listener completely. BRUTAL.
3. Beaten To Death – “Grind Korn” – Agronomicon
This one has something for everybody. I really can’t go on enough about how unique and singular everything is about this band but this song, the opening track on their latest full-length Agronomicon, really displays everything I love about this band, from the sweeping melodic passages, the brutally clean guitar tone and right down to the irreverent song title. A masterstroke of nü-grind.
Chepang – “Kyacha Pyakha” – Split w/ Test
This song right here isn’t just a personal favorite, it’s the sound of a band coming into its own, a remarkable achievement for a group that started from such a unique place to begin with. Both songs on their split with Test really take advantage of the band’s dual-drummer approach and “Kyacha Pyakha” feels like an actualization of everything this band might achieve in the future. It is always the sign of a great grindcore song that the blast parts are just as memorable as the groovier passages. Which brings us to our number one selection….
1. Meth Leppard – “Krokodil Dundee” – Split w/ Minimum Wage Assassins
From start to finish my favorite song (any genre) of 2018. Though far from revolutionary in any respect, “Krokodil Dundee” takes me back to when I first started getting into grindcore and listened to all the bands on This Comp. Kills Fascists Vol. 1, on which every band managed to perfectly marry memorable blasting chaos with absolutely disgusting mosh-worthy grooves. No grindcore song I encountered this past year got it as right as this fucking banger right here. All hail.