20 Best Metal Albums of 2013

The year's wildest, smartest, most intense heavy music

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Church of Misery, 'My Kingdom Scum'
Courtesy of Metal Blade Records13/20

13. Church of Misery, 'My Kingdom Scum'

Little has changed for Japanese metal doomsayers Church of Misery since they put out their 2001 debut, a record that features serial killer John Wayne Gacy on the cover and bore the punny Sabbath title Master of Brutality. Their fifth album, Thy Kingdom Scum, still bulges with bluesy Tony Iommi-inspired riffs, murder-minded allusions, audio samples and even a steroidal cover of Seventies proggers Quartermass' "One Blind Mice." Other bands have turned on and tuned down to the formula before, but few have made it the sort of acid-trip-gone-bad that Church of Misery have on this record. 

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