10 Terrible Metal Albums By 10 Brilliant Metal Bands
5. Morbid Angel – Illud Divinum Insanus
Fans of the death metal group Morbid Angel were greatly anticipating the band’s return to music after eight long years of waiting. Unfortunately, they were sorely disappointed with what materialized in the end. Released in 2011, Illud Divinum Insanus was an almost offensively bad album, complete with bog-standard songwriting, gobsmackingly poor lyricism, and a complete lack of hooks. The absence of drummer Pete Sandoval can be felt all over this dull release, and even masterful producer Sean Beavan can’t bring it back to life. The record was delayed constantly before it finally dropped, and sadly, is shows.
4. Anthrax – Stomp 442
Hard thrashers Anthrax remain one of the best bands to come out of the thrash sub-genre, but you wouldn’t know it on the basis of their 1995 release Stomp 442. If you looked up the word generic in the dictionary, this record would probably be given as an example. It’s made up of 50 minutes of unimaginative speed metal that zooms over your head without making an impact – the complete antithesis of what made them so great throughout the ‘80s. However, they weren’t the only group of their ilk to falter on occasion…
3. Slayer – Diabolus in Musica
Yes, following in Anthrax’s terrible album trail were fellow thrash legends Slayer. At a time when nu-metal was all the rage, Slayer found themselves a crossroads, releasing their unfocused eighth studio album Diabolus in Musica in the summer of ’98. However, tuning their guitars down to #C didn’t stop this album from reeking of desperation. Lead single “Stain of Mind” is serviceable enough, but the rest of the record lacks the vitality and urgency that epitomized albums like Reign in Blood and Seasons in the Abyss. Thankfully, they got back into their groove in recent years, ultimately distancing themselves from this failed experiment in the process.
2. Black Sabbath – Forbidden
Released in 1995, Black Sabbath’s Forbidden is the work of a group in disarray. With only one original member involved in the project, Forbidden doesn’t represent the legendary band’s true capabilities. Guitarist Tony Iommi delivers his trademark doom-laden riffs, but they lack imagination compared to some of his greatest creations. The record is a tepid affair which isn’t helped some totally uninspired compositions. With Body Count’s Ernie C and Ice-T contributing heavily to it, the album feels weirdly out of place in the band’s discography too. It’s an interesting coming together of two iconic acts but it really should’ve been put under a different moniker. This isn’t the Black Sabbath of old – and the album suffers greatly because of it.
1. Iron Maiden – Virtual XI
Boy, what were Iron Maiden playing at in 1998? With falsetto extraordinaire Bruce Dickinson out of the equation, substitute vocalist Blaze Bayley led the charge on the group’s eleventh studio album Virtual XI. Named to coincide with the FIFA World Cup that year, as well as to promote their video game Ed Hunter (the first sign that all is not well with this recording), Virtual XI is one of the most uninspired albums by a great band that you’re ever likely to hear. It’s bland, it’s lifeless, and it’s utterly devoid of any satisfying cuts. Avoid!
What do you think is the worst metal album released by a great metal band? Let us know in the comments!