Microwave made a sharp left turn from their emo-ish alt-rock roots on this year's crushingly heavy Death Is A Warm Blanket, which is one of the year's underrated post-hardcore gems. Since the year is coming to a close, we asked Microwave frontman Nathan Hardy what his favorite albums of the year were, and he sent a list of five records, including veteran bands Pedro the Lion and Refused, current metalcore staples Knocked Loose and Vatican, and another band who took a turn towards heavy this year: psych-rockers turned thrashers King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard. Nathan also wrote a bit about each pick. Check out his full list below.

Microwave are also on tour now with Boston Manor, Heart Attack Man, and Selfish Things. They're currently on the West Coast (and already played NYC), but they'll be back in the Northeast to wrap up the tour in Hartford, CT. List of all remaining North American tour dates and a video of Microwave's new album below too.

NATHAN HARDY'S (MICROWAVE) FAVORITE ALBUMS OF 2019

Pedro the Lion - Phoenix
“Kid sister said ‘how much have you saved?’ I calculated then hung my head in shame.” Dave Bazan is one of my favorite songwriters of all time and this record has some of the best songs he’s ever written.

Knocked Loose - A Different Shade of Blue
This record has the same unique blend of metal/hardcore/beat-down music that made their 2016 record ‘Laugh Tracks’ so popular, but this time it’s a little more reminiscent of 2000s metal-core records from bands like Botch and Unearth. They write great songs and deserve every bit of the crazy success they’ve been having.

Vatican - Sole Impulse
We’ve been playing shows with Vatican guitarist Tom Lovejoy in various other bands for years. He was always meant to be part of a project with more breakdowns. Vatican delivers the mosh 10/10. This record is heavy as hell.

King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard - Infest the Rat’s Nest
I’ve heard their name occasionally over the last several years but I never actually listened to their music until this year. It’s exciting that a band with music in the same vein as Melvins is doing as well as they are in 2019.

Refused - War Music
One of my long time favorite bands. They continue to explore what they can do with their sound on each record.

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Microwave -- 2019 North American Tour Dates
12/07 Portland, OR @ Hawthorne Theater ^
12/08 Seattle, WA @ El Corazon ^
12/10 Salt Lake City, UT @ In The Venue ^
12/11 Denver, CO @ Marquis Theater ^
12/13 Kansas City, MO @ Davey's Uptown ^
12/14 Springfield, MO @ Outland Ballroom ^
12/15 Chicago, IL @ Bottom Lounge ^
12/17 Detroit, MI @ The Shelter ^
12/19 Toronto, ON @ Velvet Underground ^
12/20 Hartfod, CT @ Webster Underground ^

^ w/ Boston Manor, Heart Attack Man, Selfish Things