10. The Crown - Doomsday King
A more ferocious death/thrash hybrid has never been heard in Sweden before, and there will never be a better one. Six years after disbanding, they returned and were as heavy, brutal and aggressive as ever.
9. Atheist - Jupiter
"Jupiter", and all other reunited prog-death-fusion bands from the early 90s have been somewhat overshadowed by Cynic's reunion, but despite that this album was a solid return to form. Almost 20 years on, there's no band quite like Atheist.
8. Sodom - In War And Pieces
The most underrated and consistent thrash band of all time? Absolutely. Kreator gets all the talk, but Sodom were always more German, more in your face and more krieg.
7. The Ocean - Heliocentric
Huge concept, huge production, huge everything.
6. Nevermore - The Obsidian Conspiracy
A great back catalogue is both a blessing and a curse. "Obsidian..." is probably one of Nevermore's weaker albums, but it's still better than most. Not TGE Part 2, but that's fine.
5. Triptykon - Eparistera Daimones
Coolest album title of the year? Without doubt one of the heaviest, darkest and most depressing albums of the year.
4. Blind Guardian - At the Edge of Time
I have heard few albums open and close in a better way. Fortunately, there're quite a few gems between those bookends, and it's pleasing to see BG return to a more "A Night At The Opera"-like sound.
3. In Mourning - Monolith
"The next Opeth" stepped out of Opeth's shadow and are poised to become the next big thing from Sweden. Progressive death/doom from Sweden never sounded as good in 2010.
2. The Ocean - Anthropocentric
Two albums by the same band? Hell yes. "Anthropocentric" is still, without a doubt the better of the two. More dynamic, more emotional and more precise.
1. Agalloch - Marrow of the Spirit
The number of albums that manage to live up to expectations are few and far between. No band manages to channel the bleakness of an autumn landscape like Agalloch. Not their best album to date, but still better than all in 2010.
Best story of 2010: Mike Portnoy, Dream Theater & A7X. TMZ has taken over the metal world!
Biggest "FINALLY!": Judas Priest finally announced that they won't go on forever.
Biggest regret: Insinuating that all A7X fans wore eyeliner, and in turn assuming that they had some sense of humour.
Most anticipated album of 2011: New Dream Theater. Nothing else comes to close.
Most pleasing fact of 2010: People seem to have forgotten that CoB exist, which is a damn good thing.
And in my feverish haze, that's all I can think of now. Bring on 2011.