SBR Top 7 Thrash Metal Albums of 2022

Thrash metal saw some big-name releases in 2022 with three of the German Big Four putting out new records. Kreator, Destruction and Tankard produced solid albums, while Megadeth and Machine Head gained most of the attention across the pond. Perhaps the most anticipated record was the comeback EP from Vio-lence after twenty-nine years away from the recording studio. Cult Canadian thrashers, Razor, also returned with their first album for a quarter of a century.

The thrash genre continues to provide inspiration for hardcore, proto-black metal and groove metal and has its own outlier bands who transcended the boundaries for something more experimental, most notably Canadian legends, Voivod, who play their own genre of music and no longer qualify for this list.

Next year sees new albums from Metallica and Testament pencilled in for release, but will we see a new effort from Prong?

These are the SBR Top 7 thrash metal albums of 2022…


7. Misfire – Sympathy For The Ignorant

What we said at the time: “The band make no secret that they grew up on the Big Four and Pantera, yet Sympathy for the Ignorant contains few traces of homage for the greats of yesteryear. This feels like a contemporary metal record, which is ironic considering the band eschewed the usual click tracks, drum compression and plastic double-kick pads on this LP… It’s rare for a band’s enthusiasm for a sub-genre to animate them as much as their passion for documenting the divided and demoralised age we inhabit in the twenty-first century. But Misfire’s zeal is real, and their thrash credentials will only expand after this debut LP.”

Country: USA

Released: 01/05/2022

Label: MNRK Heavy

Read the original SBR review here.


6. Brotality – The Woods Will End You

What we said at the time: “Brotality take inspiration from the greats, but their youthful enthusiasm and precocious talent make for a remarkable listening experience on The Woods Will End You. It’s easy to lose your mind when you see three kids blitz through their instruments like veteran performers, but the sense that they live and breathe their music is infectious. One gasps at the thought that their best years are still ahead of them.”

Country: USA

Released: 03/06/2022

Label: Rottweiler Records

Read the original SBR review here.


5. Detraktor – Full Body Stomp

What we said at the time: “This music is all about the beats and the riffs. The band force these on you like an adrenaline surge injected into your body to sway you towards impulsive actions you would normally shy away from… We all know that heavy guitar music can generate a feeling of invincibility in the listener, and Full Body Stomp is the ideal album if you crave this phenomenon. Turn it up, work those tendons, and raise those shoulders in triumph. You are the king.”

Country: Germany

Released: 25/11/2022

Label: Massacre Records

Read the original SBR review here.


4. Soulfly – Totem

What we said at the time: “He might have a contract for life with Nuclear Blast, but Max shows here that he wants to push his songwriting and his guitar playing to new heights. The shredding solos are short and sweet; Zyon’s double-time drumbeats are always ready to change the tempo when needed. ‘The Damage Done’ takes the raw DNA of Celtic Frost and the homicidal groove of Slayer as if reinterpreting Sepultura’s classic ‘Refuse/Resist’ with a new mindset. Yet nothing here feels nostalgic or desperate to correct the artistic mistakes of the past.”

Country: USA/Brazil

Released: 05/08/2022

Label: Nuclear Blast

Read the original SBR review here.


3. High Command – Eclipse of the Dual Moons

What we said at the time: “The adrenaline of ‘Imposing Hammers of Cold Sorcery’ and ‘Omniscient Flail of Infamy’ make you want to grab a sabre and jump into the fog of battle with no concern for having your head hacked off with a mace. You’ll hear the Peace Sells era brilliance of Megadeth in the former and might note the reference to Metallica’s ‘Eye of the Beholder’ in the intro of the latter. The quintet wear their thrash influences on their battle jackets with pride, but their riffs force you to bare your teeth and screw up your face into manic shapes. They possess you like an external force that wants to control your shoulders and pendulate your head.”

Country: USA

Released: 25/11/2022

Label: Southern Lord

Read the original SBR review here.


2. Extinction A.D. – Culture of Violence

What we said at the time: “These guys mean business when they rally against the state of the modern world with its chronic wealth inequality, corruption, and political self-interest… It’s clear Extinction A.D. worship the power of the chunky guitar riff and love their metal as much as the fury of their hardcore youth. You wouldn’t be surprised if they hunted down the finest guitar tech of the mid-90s groove metal era to capture that bone-crushing tone we all love on this record. The opening title track contains the most vicious amp distortion you’ll hear all year.”

Country: USA

Released: 18/03/2022

Label: Unique Leader Records

Read the original SBR review here.


1. Machine Head – Of Kingdom and Crown

What we said at the time: “Robb Flynn has a gift for taking risks that backfire, but he also has a knack for reading the zeitgeist and understanding what the fanbase want at a critical moment in the quartet’s career… We demanded a comeback album and no messing around with hip hop rhymes and bounce riffs. Machine Head deliver here with middle fingers raised. But they also unearth a career highlight to follow in the wake of Burn My Eyes and The Blackening. The excitement does not abate after multiple listens. If only the metal establishment in their own country would put them on the same pedestal they occupy in Europe.”

Country: USA

Released: 26/08/2022

Label: Nuclear Blast

Read the original SBR review here.


Honourable mentions

Hild – ValFreiya (Label: Odium Records)

Municipal Waste – Electrified Brain (Label: Nuclear Blast)

Razor – Cycle of Contempt (Label: Relapse Records)

Sadistic Ritual – The Enigma, Boundless (Label: Prosthetic Records)

Venom Inc. – There’s Only Black (Label: Nuclear Blast)