Best Rock & Metal Releases of August 2022

Perhaps I’m just getting pickier, but August had much fewer releases that I cared about than previous months this year. Nonetheless, there were still many quality albums and EPs that I did enjoy last month. August especially blew me away with the high caliber of death metal that came out. 

I originally thought that January might be the best month for death metal this year with albums by Fit For An Autopsy, Enterprise Earth, and Shadow of Intent. Then August came around with Psycroptic, Arch Enemy, The Halo Effect, and the return of Becoming The Archetype, to name just a few, and now I’m not sure which month has the better death metal line up.

August also provided some interesting alt rock/metal releases from Unprocessed, Tropic Gold, The Dangerous Summer, Muse, and Nightlife, all of which I recommend. Additionally, we got the return of some popular staples like I Prevail, Five Finger Death Punch, Hollywood Undead, and Machine Head.

In all, August really was a banger month. There were about six contenders for my top three albums of the month including Royal Coda, Psycroptic, and Arch Enemy, but ultimately I had to go with my heart.

My Top 3 Albums of August

‘Children Of The Great Extinction’ by Becoming The Archetype

What a return! It’s funny, I’ve heard about Becoming The Archetype for awhile, but never got into them. Then I heard that they were coming back after 10 years and I wanted to dive into their discography, but I couldn’t get past their very first album because it was so incredible that I kept wanting to relisten to it. By the time COTGE came out that’s still all I had heard. In short, COTGE blew me away. Just the amount of creativity that went into its composition and lyrics is enough to make it a contender for best of the month, perhaps even best of the year. It’s progressive, yet catchy. Jason Wisdom’s screams are guttural and beastly and the guitar work is so distinct that you’ll recognize it from a mile away. It also has some of the coolest album art of this year. Absolutely killer record!

‘Days of the Lost’ by The Halo Effect

This album is phenomenal, especially when you take into account that it’s a debut! Death metal can sometimes feel hard to approach, but The Halo Effect has made a stiff genre feel very engaging with anthemic choruses and recognizable melodies. Perhaps this album is a little cheesy, but that only adds to its charm. It’s also filled with fun guitar parts, including some very tasty solos. DOTL had a lot of competition this month, but I found myself returning to it often enough that I just had to choose it for my top 3 of August.

‘Deathrattle Sing For Me’ by Norma Jean

Norma Jean is another one of those bands that I’ve heard about for years, and maybe I heard a single or two, but I never really checked them out. I’ve now discovered that I’m really behind the curve because they are a unique style of metalcore that I’ve never heard anywhere else. They are chaotic yet pointed, creative yet purposeful. This album is a work of art and I feel like I haven’t even scratched the surface. Captivating songwriting combined with boomy drums and unique guitar tones keep this album feeling fresh even after multiple listens.

Best of August

I’ve now shown you my three favorites of the month but August contained far more than just three great albums. Here’s my full list of everything that I thought was worthwhile, 63 albums and EPs in total.

Week of August 5th

Top 5:

Avalanche Effect – ‘Katharsis’ [metalcore]

Hot Milk – ‘The King and Queen of Gasoline’ EP [pop punk]

Psycroptic – ‘Divine Council’ [technical death metal]

SHEORU – ‘Forever Sleep’ EP [metalcore]

Wake Up Hate – ‘I JUST DON’T LOVE YOU ANYMORE’ [modern hard rock]

Honorable Mentions:

All of Mine – ‘Zerfall’ [post hardcore]

Another Now – ‘OMNI+’ [metalcore]

Bullet for my Valentine – ‘Bullet for my Valentine (Deluxe Album)’ [thrash metalcore]

Emery Heights – ‘Miles Away’ EP [modern alt rock]

Expectations – ‘Heartless, Shallow and Cruel’ [melodic hardcore]

Fall And Resist – ‘Darkness Of Now’ EP [melodic death metal]

Grizzlyshark – ‘MOSAIC’ EP [pop punk/post hardcore]

In Hearts Wake – ‘Green Is The New Black Soundtrack (Official Soundtrack)’ [metalcore]

Reckless High – ‘The Brawl’ [rap rock]

Splitmouth – ‘Self’ [metalcore/deathcore]

Week of August 12th

Top 5:

Arch Enemy – ‘Deceivers’ [melodic death metal]

The Halo Effect – ‘Days of the Lost’ [melodic death metal]

Norma Jean – ‘Deathrattle Sing For Me’ [chaotic metalcore]

Royal Coda – ‘To Only a Few at First‘ [progressive post-hardcore]

Unprocessed – ‘Gold’ [progressive alt rock/metal]

Honorable Mentions:

Ascent of Autumn – ‘Awakened’ [deathcore]

Frontier Season – ‘Hopeless Confessions EP’ [metalcore/post hardcore]

Grimmwood – ‘Inheritance EP’ [metalcore]

Heart of Gold – ‘Beautiful Dangerous’ [alt/pop rock]

Hollywood Undead – ‘Hotel Kalifornia’ [modern rap hard rock]

Idle Discourse – ‘VOLUME ONE’ [rap metalcore]

Immunity -‘Breathe’ [metalcore]

In Disarray – ‘Trauma’ [metalcore]

Of Virtue – ‘Sinner EP’ [alt metalcore]

Seyr – ‘Flux’ [progressive death metal]

Stryfe – ‘Cursed Theatre’ [modern hard rock/heavy metal]

Week of August 19th

Top 5:

Alpha Wolf/Holding Absence – ‘The Lost & The Longing’ EP [metalcore]

Hallways ‘I Wake I Fall’ EP [melodic hardcore]

I Prevail – ‘TRUE POWER’ [nu metalcore]

Ocean Sleeper – ‘Is It Better Feeling Nothing’ EP [metalcore]

Tropic Gold – ‘DO U FEEL IT?’ EP [alt rock/metal]

Honorable Mentions:

Five Finger Death Punch – ‘Afterlife’ [hard rock]

Orthodox – ‘Learning To Dissolve’ [nu hardcore]

Pistols At Dawn – ‘Ascension’ [hard rock]

Revaira – ‘Journey’ EP [metalcore]

The Rising Tide – ‘Visions’ EP [deathcore]

Soilwork – ‘Övergivenheten’ [progressive rock/metal]

Spirit .End – ‘Frozen in Endless Motion’ EP [metalcore]

The Worst of Us – ‘GOD COMPLEX’ EP [nu metalcore]

Week of August 26th

Top 5:

Becoming The Archetype – ‘Children Of The Great Extinction’ [progressive death metal]

The Dangerous Summer – ‘Come Home’ [alt rock]

Machine Head – ‘Of Kingdom And Crown’ [groove metal]

Muse – ‘Will Of The People’ [hard alt pop rock]

Nightlife – ‘fallback’ EP [pop fusion rock]

Honorable Mentions:

A Moment’s Notice – ‘LOTUS’ EP [metalcore]

Align The Tide – ‘Hollow’ [melodic death metal]

Ambers Wake ‘SOLACE’ EP [post hardcore]

Cyborg Octopus – ‘Between The Light And Air’ [progressive metal]

Drag Me Out – ‘Demons Away’ – [metalcore]

Dynazty – ‘Final Advent’ [hard rock/heavy metal]

Ghost In the Ruins – ‘Return to Ash’ [metalcore]

God of Nothing – ‘Terrible Things’ EP [deathcore]

Long Distance Calling – ‘Eraser’ [instrumental progressive post rock]

Matt Sassano – ‘In Defiance’ EP [modern hard rock]

Obsidian Mind – ‘Obsidian Mind’ EP [metalcore]

Underthrow – ‘In Memory of Fading Hearts’ [melodic hardcore]

Venerea – ‘Euro Trash’ [punk]

Westhand – ‘Cyanide Culture’ [nu metalcore]

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