“Aathma” by Persefone

Persefone’s complex attempt to push the boundaries of progressive, death, and melodic metal, Aathma goes to great lenghts to circumscribe the borders of each genre – and break through to something greater that itself. Ambitious and conceptual, this album demands attention.

“Belfry” by Messa

Messa uses Belfry’s hour-long running time to explore modern notions of ambient doom and metal while evoking the sounds of the late 70s, complete with the occasional jazz interlude. There’s a lot of blues, a lot of heaviness, and a lot of weird noise going on here. And it’s quite beautiful.