Following our lists on '90s metalcore and 2000s post-hardcore, this edition of 'In Defense of the Genre' looks at 15 classic albums from metalcore's most popular era. Check out five songs we recommend by newer metalcore bands after the list.


As the current metalcore resurgence was really starting to take off, we looked back on 15 classic albums from the genre's origin decade, the 1990s. The genre continues to grow, countless great new bands are taking influence from all throughout its history, and more and more classic bands have been having comebacks lately, so we thought it'd be a good time to highlight 15 more albums from the second wave of metalcore's history: its 2000s explosion.

It's never totally clear when one wave of a genre starts and when another ends, and it's not even totally clear what bands should count as what genre, but I'd say that metalcore's first and second waves are pretty evenly split by the turn of the millennium. Bands like Earth Crisis, Integrity, Unbroken, and Deadguy laid the groundwork for metalcore in the early/mid 1990s, and it was an album that was released with literally two weeks left of 1999 -- Poison The Well's debut LP The Opposite of December... A Season of Separation -- that really marked the end of the metalcore's first wave and set the more melodic tone the genre would take as it exploded into the mainstream in the 2000s. It's a lot less clear when the second wave ends -- some might argue that it never really did -- but I'm stopping this list in 2010, a year that birthed at least two landmark albums by bands who had been grinding all throughout the 2000s. There were still lifer bands like Converge and Every Time I Die who kept churning out great records throughout the 2010s, but most of the key 2000s bands had fizzled out, broken up, or changed styles by that point, and it'd be a few years until younger bands like Code Orange and Knocked Loose gave metalcore the booster shot that it needed.

As for what counts as metalcore, there will always be disagreements. You could probably count classic albums like From Autumn to Ashes' Too Bad You're Beautiful, Hopesfall's The Satellite Years, and maybe even Thrice's The Artist in the Ambulance as metalcore, but I think they overall fall more into post-hardcore and you can find all three in our list of 15 albums that defined the 2000s post-hardcore boom. This list doesn't really get into deathcore, but it does have a variety of different types of metalcore, including bands who lean towards mathcore, progressive metal, hard rock, hardcore punk, and others that are just about as straight-up metalcore as it gets. Picking just 15 albums from an entire decade means leaving off some major bands (like Unearth, August Burns Red, Bleeding Through, Shadows Fall, Hatebreed, Avenged Sevenfold, Trivium, Dead To Fall, It Dies Today, and more), so if your favorite album is missing, leave it in the comments and try not to hate me too much.

In celebration of this list, we were also able to add some of these records to our shop, including a few on new, limited vinyl variants.

Read on for my list of 15 seminal albums from metalcore's second wave, unranked, in chronological order. For those keeping score, the year with the most albums represented is 2003. Good year for metalcore.

Killswitch Engage

Killswitch Engage - Killswitch Engage (2000)

If Poison The Well's The Opposite of December marked the end of metalcore's first wave at the tail end of 1999, then Killswitch Engage's self-titled debut officially ushered in the second wave just months later. Killswitch would eventually sign a major label deal with Roadrunner and go on to be one of the biggest metalcore bands of all time, but none of it would have happened without this pivotal debut (released on the now-defunct, then-iconic metalcore/post-hardcore label Ferret). "Before any big labels, world tours, and even the term 'metalcore,' it was just us four guys playing metal steeped in hardcore roots," frontman Jesse Leach said when the album got a 20th anniversary vinyl reissue last year. "We had no regard for a career, ambition, or any thought of longevity or legacy." That very much comes through in the music, which is noticeably rawer and less commercial sounding than what Killswitch would release at the height of their fame, but which was still more crisp and melodic than most '90s metalcore and ended up kicking down the doors for this band and the genre in general. Killswitch helped introduce the influence of Swedish melo-death bands like At The Gates and In Flames into American metalcore; a few years later, there'd be dozens of bands doing the same thing, but the melodic riffage on this LP is some of the first. Guitarist Adam Dutkiewicz's production also helped define the sound of the next decade of metalcore. He'd go on to produce countless definitive metalcore albums -- several of which are on this list -- and he honed his skills making his own band's debut.

Pick up the 20th anniversary edition of Killswitch Engage's self-titled debut on green splatter vinyl in our shop.

Eighteen Visions

Eighteen Visions - Until The Ink Runs Out (2000)

Before Eighteen Visions went on to embrace radio-friendly melodic metalcore, and before guitarist/backing vocalist Brandan Schieppati achieved fame fronting his own band Bleeding Through, 18v were following in the footsteps of '90s bands like Converge, Cave In, Coalesce, and Botch. For their sophomore album and Trustkill debut, Until The Ink Runs Out, they took that sound, made it their own, and influenced a ton of other bands in the process. Instead of veering towards atmosphere and art rock like their predecessors did, 18v were all about the brutality. Breakdowns became a cliché by the late 2000s, but Until The Ink Runs Out employed a breakdown-after-breakdown-after-breakdown approach that felt revolutionary (and not cheesy) at the time, while also managing to contain songs that were tuneful but not poppy or glossy. The album ended up forming a bridge between the more hardcore-leaning '90s bands and the machine-gun-chugging 2000s bands, and it remains a record that hardcore kids and Ozzfest attendees can agree on today.

Pick up a vinyl copy of Until The Ink Runs Out in our shop.


Converge - Jane Doe (2001)

Does Jane Doe really count as second wave metalcore? Converge had already helped shape the genre's first wave, and by 2001, it'd be more accurate to say they transcended metalcore completely than to say they fit in with the Killswitch Engages of the world. At the same time, talking about this era of metalcore without Jane Doe is like talking about '60s rock without Revolver. It definitely transcended metalcore, but it was (and still is) the metalcore album... not just of the 2000s but probably ever. It's ambitious and experimental and feels as much like brainy art rock as it feels like raw hardcore. It incorporates anything from mind-melting mathcore (opener "Concubine") to Jesus Lizard-style noise rock ("Hell to Pay") to climactic post-rock (the album-closing, nearly-12-minute title track) and plenty of the in-between. J. Bannon sounds like he must have needed throat surgery immediately after recording it, and all four of the instrumentalists (including classic-lineup members Kurt Ballou, Nate Newton, Ben Koller, and former member Aaron Dalbec who left after this album to focus on Bane) sound as precise, technical, and pulverizing as they ever have. If Jane Doe does have something in common with Killswitch Engage, it's that it established their guitarist (Kurt Ballou) as an in-demand producer. For the last nearly 20 years, Kurt has been the guy you go to when you want to record a hard-hitting record that blurs the lines between metal and punk. Kurt's production style has defined a very large segment of the heavy music that came out over the past two decades, and I think you'd be hard-pressed to find a metal/hardcore/punk band who doesn't aspire to the greatness of Jane Doe.

Norma Jean

Norma Jean - Bless the Martyr and Kiss the Child (2002)

Norma Jean's debut LP Bless the Martyr and Kiss the Child (Solid State) was one of the several landmark metalcore albums produced by Killswitch Engage's Adam Dutkiewicz, but as KSE and many of their peers were taking metalcore in a more melodic direction, Norma Jean further explored the genre's darker, more aggressive side. Early reviews regularly compared the album to '90s bands like Zao and Botch, which makes sense, but undersells how forward-thinking this album was. Norma Jean and vocalist Josh Scogin (who left the band after this album to form The Chariot and currently fronts the hard rock band '68) would turn out to be architects of metalcore's second wave, and looking back, you can hear that everything they achieved began right here. The album feels rawer, harder, and more sincere than a lot of the big records that came out of metalcore's mainstream explosion, and it's more varied too. It offers up metalcore at its most furious at times, and completely defies the genre at others. It has an atmospheric post-sludge-metal side that comes through on songs like "Organized Beyond Recognition," "I Used to Hate Cell Phones, But Now I Hate Car Accidents," and especially "Pretty Soon, I Don't Know What, But Something Is Going to Happen," the album's 16-minute centerpiece that earns every second and genuinely deserves to be called "epic." "Memphis Will Be Laid to Waste" finds time for the unmistakable shout-singing of Aaron Weiss of mewithoutYou (who Norma Jean released a split with that same year), and it speaks to Norma Jean's range as musicians that Aaron sounds as comfortable on this album as he does with his own much different band. These subtleties in the songwriting have helped the album age well and continue to stand out from Norma Jean's peers. For an album that so frequently got compared to '90s bands when it came out, it sounds pretty timeless today.

Shai Hulud

Shai Hulud - That Within Blood Ill-Tempered (2003)

Florida's Shai Hulud released one of the key records of metalcore's first wave with their 1997 debut LP Hearts Once Nourished with Hope and Compassion, after which vocalist Chad Gilbert left to get extremely famous as the guitarist/backing vocalist of New Found Glory (and other members also left to focus on Further Seems Forever, The Rocking Horse Winner, and more). Six years, a few splits, and a bunch of lineup shifts later, metalcore was ruling the airwaves and Shai Hulud were finally back with a second LP (on Revelation). Fronted by vocalist Geert van der Velde and only featuring guitarist/founder/primary songwriter Matt Fox from the Hearts Once Nourished lineup, Shai Hulud looked a lot different on paper, but That Within Blood Ill-Tempered picked up right where its predecessor left off, solidifying Shai Hulud as staples of metalcore's first and second waves. By '03, metalcore had already exploded into the mainstream and birthed melodic clean-vocal bands that veered closer to arena rock than hardcore punk, but Shai Hulud brought the genre back to its roots without rehashing old ideas or sounding outdated. It feels safe to assume that Matt Fox's melodic leads and bludgeoning chugs were influencing tons of the newer bands who had taken off by 2003, and with this album, he breathed new life into his own sound, rivaling the genre's new blood and marking a clear progression from Shai Hulud's already-great debut in the process. Geert also proved to be just as suitable for Matt's riffs as Chad Gilbert was, with a bark that was as cutthroat as it was human - nothing glossy or generic or cookie monster, just pure anger.

Every Time I Die

Every Time I Die - Hot Damn! (2003)

When metalcore came into existence in the 1990s, Buffalo emerged as one of the genre's major hubs thanks to pioneering bands like Earth Crisis and Snapcase. The influence that those bands had/have on this genre cannot be overstated, but it was a band who would come to prominence in the next decade that would take Buffalo metalcore to thrilling new heights: Every Time I Die. ETID would go on to rival the likes of Converge in terms of their longevity, consistency, and originality (their upcoming ninth album is one of 2021's most anticipated in any genre), and they released so many compelling albums during this time period that it's hard to pick just one for this list, but their Ferret-released sophomore LP Hot Damn! is the moment they solidified themselves as one of metalcore's most crucial bands. As the years progressed, they'd embrace fiery hard/Southern rock riffs and stadium-sized choruses that could incite mass singalongs without sacrificing any of their grit, and Hot Damn! was the perfect middle ground between their more accessible era and their primitive 2001 debut Last Night In Town. Hot Damn!'s caustic production made this feel more like an intimate, basement-dwelling punk record than its successors, and its rawness could barely contain the growing ambition in ETID's songwriting. Hot Damn! is as tough and aggressive as just about anything to come out of metalcore in the 2000s, but few others are this fun. It's frantic and theatrical and feels like it's always going 50 mph over the speed limit. And it stands out from the metalcore pack because it transcends the genre without abandoning it.

Poison The Well

Poison The Well - You Come Before You (2003)

Poison The Well helped kick off the melodic metalcore craze with their 1999 debut LP The Opposite of December, and then as the genre took off, they went in a more experimental direction on 2002's Tear from the Red, and then they officially capitalized on the melodic metalcore house they helped build with their major label debut You Come Before You (which came out the same exact day as Hot Damn!). They recorded it with producers Eskil Lövström and Pelle Henricsson, who previously worked together on Refused's The Shape of Punk to Come, which made them a perfect fit for what Poison The Well were doing with this album. They took the melodic hooks of December, the experimentation of Tear from the Red, and the more polished attack that metalcore had developed by '03, and they fused it all together, coming out with a record that's equal parts experimental, abrasive, and accessible. In a sense, it's kind of like The Shape of Punk to Come, in that it blurs the line between art rock and Headbangers Ball bait. PTW would get even more musically adventurous (and less metalcore) on their final two albums, leaving You Come Before You as both the literal and symbolic middle ground of their career. It's the culmination of everything they had been working towards on their first two LPs, and their most true-blue example of second wave metalcore.


Nora - Dreamers & Deadmen (2003)

In addition to founding Ferret Records (and later Good Fight Music), Carl Severson fronted the NJ metalcore band Nora, who issued their sophomore LP Dreamers and Deadmen at the height of metalcore's explosion. (Despite owning their own iconic label, this was released by another key metalcore label, Trustkill.) Nora had released a split in the late '90s with fellow New Jersians The Dillinger Escape Plan, but while Dillinger were churning out chaotic mathcore, Nora were keeping things a little more straightforward with a brand of metalcore that embraced the simplicity of hardcore punk and the thick-as-brick riffage of hard rock. It shared a little DNA (and producer Eric Rachel) with Hot Damn!, but it also had a darker side that recalled a band like The Hope Conspiracy or Turmoil, and the result was an album as swaggering as it was in-your-face. Nora also got by with a little help from their friends -- Hopesfall frontman Jay Forrest lent his voice to "Dreamers" and Converge frontman J. Bannon designed the awesome album art -- but Nora also carved out a space of their own within metalcore with this album. Collabs and comparisons aside, it holds up so well because nothing else totally scratches the same itch.

Between The Buried and Me

Between the Buried and Me - The Silent Circus (2003)

Over the course of their 20 years as a band, Between the Buried and Me would embrace progressive rock, technical death metal, jazz fusion, and so much more; there really isn't one genre to accurately describe them. But before all of that, they started out largely within the realm of metalcore, and their Victory-released sophomore LP The Silent Circus is a near-perfect metalcore album. Even at this point in their career, they were experimenting with prog, tech-death, and jazzy clean passages, but for the most part, they were working those ambitions into concise songs that packed the same punch as the more straight-up metalcore bands. The run of albums they put out in the 2000s was stunning and nearly unparalleled -- each of the five LPs they released that decade were different and a noticeable leap from the last -- and I wouldn't necessarily say The Silent Circus is my favorite, but it's the one that left the biggest impact on metalcore, and probably on deathcore too. BTBAM weren't exactly a deathcore band themselves, but when that whole thing took off, you'd have to imagine that those bands were channelling the death metal/metalcore fusion that BTBAM perfected on The Silent Circus. The songs on this album are some of the most technical and brutal songs to come out of the entire early 2000s metalcore boom, and a song like "Shevanel Take 2" or the bridge of "Ad A Dglgmut" proved BTBAM were better at being soft and ethereal than most of their peers too. Even today, listening to what they achieved on this album is awe-inspiring.

Misery Signals

Misery Signals - Of Malice and the Magnum Heart (2004)

Misery Signals are officially back with original vocalist Jesse Zaraska and released a new album with him in 2020, but until then, their only album with Jesse was their Devin Townsend-produced, Ferret-released 2004 debut Of Malice and the Magnum Heart. Working with a prog metal wiz as a producer already put Malice in much different territory than the records helmed by Adam Dutkiewicz, Eric Rachel, and Kurt Ballou. It's glossier, proggier, and more complex than the standard metalcore fare of the time, and Misery Signals embraced those tendencies in a noticeably different way than, say, BTBAM did. Jesse has more of a hardcore punk bark than you might expect from a band who leans prog, and the band favored slam-inducing breakdowns just as often as they favored dizzying technicality. It's an album that seems like it's constantly caught between aggression and emotion, polish and brutality, and brainy complexity and physical attack, and all those dichotomies are what make it so unique.

Dillinger Escape Plan

The Dillinger Escape Plan - Miss Machine (2004)

The Dillinger Escape Plan helped invent the utterly chaotic subgenre of mathcore with their 1999 debut LP Calculating Infinity, after which Dimitri Minakakis left the band, leaving them without a vocalist. While they searched for a permanent replacement, they recorded the Irony Is a Dead Scene EP, and vocals on that were handled by none other than Faith No More/Mr. Bungle's Mike Patton, who was understandably attracted to the totally batshit music Dillinger were making. Once they officially recruited new vocalist Greg Puciato, they released their second full-length Miss Machine (on Relapse), and this time around they were even more batshit. I don't even like calling this album "mathcore"; it's too niche, it undersells it. It's like, I don't know, progressive circus acid freakout avant-goth metallic rock -- definitely a little more Bungle-y than before they worked with Mike Patton -- but still somehow very much a metalcore record. As great as Dimitri Minakakis was, Greg Puciato was perfect for this new sound. His scream is as ferocious as you want from metalcore, but the range of his clean-singing voice matched the growing musical range of the band's instrumentalists. Like on their debut, band members Ben Weinman and Chris Pennie co-produced the album with pioneering metalcore producer Steve Evetts (Deadguy, Snapcase, etc), but this time they embraced a warmer, more spacious production style that really gave these ambitious songs room to breathe. It's obviously weird music, but it's not difficult to listen to. Mixed in with all the looniness is a big, bold rock record with hooks that rivaled anyone in melodic metalcore. Miss Machine did it all, and it never went overboard.

Pick up 'Miss Machine,' 'Calculating Infinity,' and DEP's 2007 album 'Ire Works' on various splatter vinyl variants in our shop.

Darkest Hour

Darkest Hour - Undoing Ruin (2005)

A lot of 2000s-era American metalcore bands were channelling the bright, rhythmic riffs of At The Gates' melodeath classic Slaughter of the Soul, but few bands nailed it like Darkest Hour did. They channelled the Swedish sound more faithfully than most, but it never felt like imitation. They made it their own. They also embraced metalcore's hardcore punk roots just as strongly as they embraced Swedeath, which made them stand out from both the punk-leaning bands and the death metal-leaning bands. They actually made their 2003 album Hidden Hands of a Sadist Nation with Slaughter of the Soul producer Fredrik Nordström and had At The Gates' Tomas Lindberg and Anders Björler guest on it, but it was that album's 2005 followup Undoing Ruin that perfectly straddled the line between Swedish melodic death metal and American metalcore. They made this Victory-released album with Devin Townsend producing, though it doesn't really sound anything like that Misery Signals album that Devin produced. Devin doesn't seem like he lets his production steer the ship; he caters his style to what each specific record calls for. In Darkest Hour's case, that means letting the riffs soar without sacrificing any of the band's punk grit. The result is an album that -- like Slaughter of the Soul -- sounds both genuinely evil and absurdly catchy. Plenty of bands try to be both of those things at once, but it's rarely pulled off like this.


Underoath - Define the Great Line (2006)

Underoath scored one of melodic metalcore's biggest mainstream breakthroughs with 2004's They're Only Chasing Safety -- their fourth album and first with lead screamer Spencer Chamberlain (who replaced Dallas Taylor, who went on to front the Southern rock-tinged metalcore band Maylene and the Sons of Disaster) -- but it was that album's darker, heavier, more experimental followup that found Underoath at their creative peak. Outside of lead single "Writing on the Walls," almost nothing on Define the Great Line scans as "radio-friendly." Spencer had really settled into his role as frontman for this album, and he brought his own vocal and lyrical style to the band rather than trying to fill the shoes of Dallas Taylor, who the previous album had at least partially been written with. His screams were more guttural on this record, and his lyricism grappled with faith in a way that was extremely personal and never felt like stereotypical Christian metalcore. The depth in the lyricism was matched by a wide range of musical influences, which included bone-crushing metalcore, atmospheric post-metal, industrial interludes, and more. In place of usual producer James Paul Wisner was Killswitch Engage's Adam Dutkiewicz and The Chariot collaborator Matt Goldman, and that new team helped Underoath achieve the more cavernous sound that these songs demanded. It was an album that made you forget everything you thought you knew about Underoath, elevated them above the endless sea of "scene" bands, and set the tone for the second and best chapter of their career.

Acacia Strain

The Acacia Strain - Wormwood (2010)

The Acacia Strain often got lumped in with deathcore, but they really predated that genre's Myspace-fueled boom (with albums dating back to the early 2000s including a trio of Adam D-produced records), though it's not totally impossible to see why. There's definitely some death metal in Vincent Bennett's growl, and the band frequently relies on slam-friendly breakdowns. More so than any other band on this list, The Acacia Strain often seem like their sole purpose is to make the earth shake when they perform. That said, it does a disservice to The Acacia Strain's creativity to only talk about them in terms of pure brutality. They're masters at subtly weaving an atmospheric side into their music, and the way they approach breakdowns always feels artistic. I know "ignorant" is a compliment when talking about breakdowns, but The Acacia Strain's breakdowns feel the opposite of that. It's not easy to pick one album that best represents them -- and if you're looking for TAS at their most strictly metalcore, you're probably better off with 3750 or The Dead Walk -- but 2010's Wormwood found them fusing together metalcore, death metal, post-sludge metal, and Meshuggah rhythms in a way that felt more seamless and more innovative than anything they'd done previously. It's frequently and deservedly considered an even better record than their earliest material, and it put them on the increasingly creative path that they're still on today -- 2019's It Comes In Waves and 2020's Slow Decay may actually be their most unique albums yet. They've also become elder statesmen of the genre, and -- through the guest appearances on Slow Decay, their choice of tourmates, and the local openers that Vincent hypes -- extremely vocal champions of today's hardcore scene. It's important for veteran bands to keep their ear to the ground the way Vincent has, and it's no surprise that many of today's best bands are eager to tour and collaborate with them. The Acacia Strain helped pave the way for so many of them.

Pick up Wormwood on limited orange/yellow vinyl in our shop.

The Chariot

The Chariot - Long Live (2010)

With Norma Jean, Josh Scogin released one of the most sharply focused metalcore albums of the early 2000s, and by the end of the decade, his band The Chariot released one of the most outrageous. With Long Live -- the band's fourth record and first for Ferret founder Carl Severson's then-new label Good Fight Music -- The Chariot took the theatrical metalcore that Every Time I Die helped pioneer and pushed it to its most delightfully obnoxious limits. The record feels as much like a Broadway play as it feels like heavy-as-fuck metalcore. One song stomps on the brakes to interject Roaring 20s ragtime, and another overlaps the band's metallic riffage with campy, drama-club spoken word (by Dan Smith of the band Listener). At one point, Josh shrieks "this is a revolution!", and he's immediately followed by a choir of whoah-ohs. The whole thing is absolutely ridiculous, but it works so well. These songs are as heavy as they are catchy as they are over-the-top, and The Chariot always manage to sound like they're in control. They put out one more record after this one (2012's One Wing) that only got weirder, finding time for a sacred hymn and a song where Josh delivers throat-shredding screams over a spaghetti western backdrop, and as much as I love the absurdity of that record too, Long Live is just nearly perfect, simultaneously overstuffed with ideas yet trimmed of any possible fat.


Listen or subscribe to a playlist with one song from each album:



As mentioned in the intro, metalcore is very much back right now, and there are tons of great new bands who scratch a similar itch as the ones on this list. Here are just five of the many new songs you should know.

The Callous Daoboys - "Fake Dinosaur Bones"

If you like the over-the-top theatrical metalcore of The Chariot, you need to be listening to fellow Atlanta band The Callous Daoboys, who pick up right where The Chariot left off and are uncompromising in how far they're willing to push the limits of this genre. They've got a highly anticipated sophomore album coming later this year, but while you wait for that, check out one of the highlights of their killer 2019 debut Die On Mars. You need to have an insane amount of conviction to pull off a song like "Fake Dinosaur Bones," and The Callous Daoboys have it.

Kaonashi - "O' Ear or Ailing Lawlessly, Or Give Me"

Pennsylvania's Kaonashi call themselves "emo mathcore," which is a good descriptor, but don't let "emo" make you think they aren't totally pissed off. They released this scorcher as a one-off single in 2020 to raise money for the the Philadelphia Bail Fund, and it's the perfect mix of dizzying mathcore riffage and pure anger.

Chamber - "In Cleansing Fire"

Nashville's Chamber fuse together the spastic technicality of bands like Botch, Converge, and The Dillinger Escape Plan with the polished chugs of the 2000s metalcore boom and some of Deftones' atmosphere, and that all comes across on "In Cleansing Fire," one of the major highlights of their debut album Cost of Sacrifice, which was one of the best metalcore debuts in recent memory.

Sharptooth - "Say Nothing (In The Absence of Content)"

Sharptooth are one of the most ferocious modern metalcore bands around, which very much comes across on both the song "Say Nothing (In The Absence Of Content)" and its music video. It's one of the most purely heavy songs on the band's excellent 2020 sophomore album Transitional Forms, and Sharptooth juxtapose the brutality with a video that pays homage to major label pop stars. "I wanted to take the sonic aspects of a genre that is so rooted in hypermasculinity—often to the point of toxicity—and steep it in things that a lot of culture looks down on, and that I absolutely happen to adore: femininity and mainstream pop music," said singer Lauren Kashan.

Cryptodira - "Dante's Inspiration"

If you want a new band that carries on the spirit of early Between the Buried and Me and The Dillinger Escape Plan, you want New York's Cryptodira. Tech-death, prog metal, straight-up metalcore, and more come together on their 2020 sophomore LP The Angel of History (released on Good Fight Music), and one of its highlights is "Dante's Inspiration," a song that's as mind-meltingly complex as it is headbangingly abrasive as it is genuinely tuneful.


The list of great new metalcore bands goes on. If you haven't already, also check out Code Orange, Knocked Loose,, Dying Wish, Ithaca, SeeYouSpaceCowboy, Hazing Over, Year of the Knife, 156/silence, Pupil Slicer, .gif from god, Wristmeetrazor, Thirty Nights of Violence, Sanction, Your Spirit Dies, Cauldron, Orthodox, Yashira, Employed To Serve, Sectioned, Frontierer, Renounced, Loathe, Mikau,'redead, and The Queen Guillotined, and even that list is just the tip of the iceberg.


* 15 ’90s metalcore albums that still resonate today

* 15 albums that defined the 2000s post-hardcore boom

* 25 essential screamo albums from the ’90s/’00s that still hold up today

Vinyl variants, tee shirts, and more related to this list available in the BV shop...


Browse our Dillinger Escape Plan collection

Killswitch Engage

Killswitch Engage - 20th anniversary edition of s/t LP on green splatter vinyl

Acacia Strain

The Acacia Strain - Wormwood on limited orange/yellow split vinyl

Eighteen Visions

Eighteen Visions - Until The Ink Runs Out vinyl


Converge - Jane Doe tee


Read past and future editions of 'In Defense of the Genre' here.

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