Earlier this week, Dolly Parton released both the official track list associated with her upcoming rock album, as well as confirmed which musical guests teamed up with her on the record.
While we have covered awesome collaborations in heavy metal in the past, this recent news got us thinking: “What are some awesome collaborative metal albums?”
So we did some digging, pulling from both the underground and mainstream metal, and compiled a list of the 10 greatest collaborative metal albums ever made.
Orbweaving – Midwife & Vyva Melinkolya
We are getting a little ahead of ourselves, but this Friday, Midwife and Vyva Melinkolya have a new collaborative album coming, and holy hell is it incredible. Each song on this record exudes a tremendous sense of atmosphere drenched in melancholy and ache. The dream-metal ambiance of the instrumentation provides an unconventional aura of heaviness – one that may not be sonically “brutal,” but a heaviness that will pull at the heartstrings and move one to tears.
Collison Course – Linkin Park & Jay-Z
Linkin Park and Jay-Z’s collaborative album Collision Course is easily one of the most iconic albums in all of heavy metal. With each act re-recording and mashing up their respective classics into fascinating remixes (e.g. “Numb/Encore”), fans are provided unique takes on each act’s work. This record is an incredible achievement and honestly, it’s shocking that there aren’t more collaborations like this.
May Our Chambers Be Full – Thou & Emma Ruth Rundle
Blending elements of sludge, doom, rock, and grunge, Thou and Emma Ruth Rundle’s collaborative effort May Our Chambers Be Full is an astounding experience of emotion and sonic creativity. Throughout each song on the album, the two acts provide moving compositions brimming with heartfelt lyrics and stirring instrumental presentations. In the years since this record has come out, May Our Chambers Be Full stands as one of the best collaborative albums in metal.
Suffocating Hallucination – Full of Hell & Primitive Man
A more recent release to appear on this list, Full of Hell and Primitive Man’s Suffocating Hallucination is an unnerving and eerie experience (and we mean this in a good way). Blending qualities of noise, death metal, drone, doom, and sludge together, the two offer a musical experience that – frankly – is suffocating. This is a record we recommend to those who are looking for something really fucking heavy.
Everything That Dies Someday Comes Back – The Body & Uniform
If you are looking for more sonic dread in your life, look no further than The Body and Uniform’s Everything That Dies Someday Comes Back. While each band is known for its respective brand of despair and chaotic performances, together, they make for a creative force that is overwhelming, maddening, and masterful. Although it’s the farthest thing from “easy listening,” Everything That Dies Someday Comes Back is an incredible venture into noise and brutality.
As one of the best collaborative albums to be made in metal history, Sun O))) and Boris’ Altar is a profound experience of doom and drone. Each act stands as masters of the noise genre, and when they came together to make Altar… they sure as hell made something very special. From the moment you start Altar, each act has invited you to take part in a remarkable meditative journey.
American Dollar Bill – Keep Facing Sideways, You’re Too Hideous to Look at Face On – Sumac & Keiji Haino
Equally as mediative is American Dollar Bill from Sumac and Keiji Haino. With Sumac being one of the most talented bands in the post-metal landscape, and Haino being a master noise artist, American Dollar Bill is a jaw-dropping experience of brilliant noise design, compositional chaos, and atmospheric intensity. In general, American Dollar Bill is one of the greatest works of avant-garde music, period.
Mariner – Cult of Luna & Julie Christmas
Featuring two of post-metal’s most fascinating acts, Mariner is a deeply moving work of drone, doom, and ambiance. Together, Cult of Luna and Julie Christmas crafted a record that is both astoundingly zen, while also heavy and obliterating. Each song on this album works together to create an immersive and tranquil experience. One of the profound qualities of this album is how the listener benefits so much from being fully engaged with each sonic element, as well as how much they can receive by just letting go and flowing along to these songs.
Lulu – Metallica & Loud Reed
A lot of Metallica fans were not overly fond of the band’s collaborative effort with Lou Reed, but you know what… this record is actually pretty damn intriguing. It may be a far cry from what Metallica is known for, but it deserves credit for highlighting what more the band is capable of creating. Also, Lars Ulrich thinks the record has “aged extremely well.”
Terrestrials – Sunn O))) & Ulver
Another Sunn O))) collaboration makes its way onto the list, but this one involves the avant-garde act Ulver. Enchanting, ambient, haunting, overwhelming, beautiful… Terrestrials is a cinematic work through and through. Each track provides a surreal musical landscape, blending abundance and minimalism, to provide an emotionally stirring and technically fascinating experience.