Gruesome Greg’s Canadian TOP 10 of 2018

Heron - A Low Winter’s Sun

10. A Low Winter’s Sun

  • Artist: Heron
  • Label: Sludgelord

Considering the relative lack of proper post-sludge acts in this country, this release is well worth checking out.

Empress - Reminiscence

9. Reminiscence

  • Artist: Empress
  • Label: self-released

There’s two distinct types of tunes on Reminiscence — three sub-four-minute tracks, and then a pair of eight-plus minute epics, where they really take things to another level. They sound a little more proggy, more akin to Anciients, Elder or maybe even Neurosis with some of their shimmering riffs.

Thy Kingdom Slum - A History of Dissent

8. A History of Dissent

  • Artist: Thy Kingdom Slum
  • Label: A History of Dissent

Thy Kingdom Slum features two former members of defunct Windsor, Ontario outfit Lodown—including their lead singer—which gives me reason enough to check out their debut EP. This is one of those Pantera-esque groovy chuggers, but with a chorus or two that reminds me of my favourite Lodown tunes. These guys are off to a pretty good start!

Hashteroid - Hashteroid

7. Hashteroid

  • Artist: Hashteroid
  • Label: self-released

I gotta hand it to this Vancouver outfit—as far as stoner band name puns go, Hashteroid is a pretty good one. But if you’re looking for Weedeater and Bongzilla worship from this trio’s debut, you might be mistaken. These guys take a faster-paced, punkier approach to stoner rock, more along the lines of The Shrine, Seattle stalwarts Zeke, or even their B.C. bros in Baptists.

The Great Sabatini - Goodbye Audio

6. Goodbye Audio

  • Artist: The Great Sabatini
  • Label: Ancient Temple Recordings

Montreal’s favourite bearded noise-rock wizards are back with their fourth full-length album, featuring such family-unfriendly titles as “Still Life with Maggots,” “The Pursuit of Crappiness Parts 1-4” and “You’re Gonna Die (Unsatisfied).”

Black Wizard - Livin’ Oblivion

5. Livin’ Oblivion

  • Artist: Black Wizard
  • Label: Listenable

Black Wizard’s last album, 2016’s New Waste, just narrowly missed our Hellbound Top 10 Canadian albums… and it’s probably my fault. I think I had it at Number 11 or 12 on my own list—not that there was anything wrong with it, just that there were a lot of great Canadian records released in 2016. Still, I kinda feel like I might owe ‘em one this time around.

We Hunt Buffalo - Head Smashed In

4. Head Smashed In

  • Artist: We Hunt Buffalo
  • Label: New Damage

For those bogged-down by similar-sounding stoner bands, this might just be the breath of fresh air you’re looking for…

Dopethrone - Transcanadian Anger

3. Transcanadian Anger

  • Artist: Dopethrone
  • Label: self-released

I’ve always found Dopethrone to be more like Canada’s answer to Bongzilla, with heavy, hazy riffs and drug references abounding on their fifth full-length album. This record might not stand out in the Dopethrone discography, but it’s sludge done just the way I like it.

La Chinga - Beyond the Sky

2. Beyond the Sky

  • Artist: La Chinga
  • Label: Small Stone

The third album from this heavy rockin’ trio proves that rock ‘n roll hasn’t been priced out of Vancouver… yet.

KEN Mode - Loved

1. Loved

  • Artist: KEN Mode
  • Label: Season of Mist

Like death and taxes, you can count on KEN Mode to deliver a new record every 2-3 years. This one’s quite the mindfuck.

Gruesome Greg

Seahawks/Stamps/Flames/Zags/Jays/Raptors fan and lifelong metal head with a beer gut and a self-deprecating sense of humour. Reviewer/blogger (Yon Senior Doomsayer) for Hellbound.ca.