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Most Anticipated Heavy Metal CDs of 2010

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8 out of 10 CDs on 2009's Most Anticipated Heavy Metal CDs ended up being released last year. In terms of big names releasing new stuff, 2010 isn't as strong as the past few years, but in terms of quality it should be another good year. This isn't meant to be a comprehensive list of 2010 releases, just a brief overview of some of the most anticipated CDs. For a more complete release schedule, check out my frequently updated list of Heavy Metal CD Release Dates.

Anthrax

Anthrax makes the list for the third consecutive year. After being pushed back from 2008 to 2009, the band had Worship Music ready to go, but then vocalist Dan Nelson left the band. It looks like former vocalist John Bush will be rejoining Anthrax, and the band is already booked for some "Big 4" shows in Europe over the summer with Metallica, Megadeth and Slayer. Let's hope the CD actually gets released in 2010 and doesn't become another Chinese Democracy.

Dimmu Borgir

Dimmu Borgir had a couple of major lineup changes in 2009, with longtime bassist ICS Vortex and keyboardist Mustis exiting the band. It wasn't a smooth parting of the ways, with acrimony and accusations on both sides. As of this writing, no replacements have been named, but the band has been working on the follow-up to 2007's In Sorte Diaboli and plan to release it in 2010.

Fear Factory

The seventh studio album from industrial metal pioneers Fear Factory marks the return of guitarist Dino Cazares. Mechanize also features new drummer Gene Hoglan, replacing Raymond Herrera. Guitarist Christian Olde Wolbers also departed the band. It's been nearly five years since the last Fear Factory studio CD, and Mechanize has a February 9th release date.

The Dillinger Escape Plan

The Dillinger Escape Plan topped many critic's charts (including this one) with their last CD, 2007's Ire Works. For 2010's Option Paralysis they have a new drummer, Billy Rymer, and a new record label. They've started their own Party Smasher label, and will release the CD in conjunction with Season Of Mist. It will be released on March 23rd.

Meshuggah

The Swedish band Meshuggah have had a long and successful career, and have always been critical favorites. 2008's ObZen was well-received, the the band's label also re-released several of the band's older albums. In 2010 the DVD Alive will be released February 9th in the U.S., with a still unnamed studio CD to follow sometime later this year.

Morbid Angel

Death metal pioneers Morbid Angel were the other artist who were on last year's main most anticipated CD list who did not release anything in 2009. Their last studio album was back in 2003, but Morbid Angel now has signed with a record label (Season Of Mist). There's no title or release date as of this writing, but their new CD is slated to come out sometime in 2010.

Pig Destroyer

They are still not household names by any means, but the grindcore band Pig Destroyer has quickly become one of the most revered bands in the underground. 2007's Phantom Limb topped many year-end lists, and the buzz is already building for the follow up. Scott Hull and company's fifth full-length is expected to be released in the fall.

Nevermore

When a band takes longer than the usual two to three years between albums, there's a greater level of anticipation from fans. Nevermore hasn't released a studio CD since 2005, and although there's been a DVD and compilation in the past couple years (along with solo releases from Warrel Dane and Jeff Loomis), expectations are especially high for The Obsidian Conspiracy.

Triptykon

Normally a band's debut album wouldn't be one of the most anticipated of the year, but being helmed by the legendary Thomas Gabriel Fischer (Tom G. Warrior) makes Triptykon's first CD very much anticipated. After leaving Celtic Frost in 2008, Fischer started this project, which he says will sound very similar. Eparistera Daimones is expected to be released in March.

High On Fire

They've been around for over a decade now, and with each album High On Fire grows in both commercial popularity and critical acclaim. The stoner/doom metal band's fifth full-length studio CD Snakes For The Divine was produced by Greg Fidelman (Metallica, Slayer), and is set for a late February release.

Other 2010 Releases

Other artists expected to release CDs in 2010 include Abysmal Dawn, Armored Saint, As I Lay Dying, Atheist, Blind Guardian, Burzum, Cathedral, Charred Walls Of The Damned, Darkthrone, Dark Tranquillilty, Deicide, Exodus, Firewind, Genghis Tron, Immolation, Intronaut, Jesu, Kingdom Of Sorrow, Landmine Marathon, Mayhem, Mnemic, Nachtmystium, Necrophagist, Neuraxis, Overkill, Raunchy, Rwake, Sick Of It All, Soilwork, Testament, Watain, Whitechapel, Xasthur, Yakuza.
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