Despite a stronger crop of records as the month of March inched along, 2013 is still not shaping up to be the best of years for metal. The dearth of ratings over 4.0 probably has something to do with my beating the “don’t overrate shit” drum loudly and repeatedly – it certainly has made me very conservative – but it’s also just that the crop of records hasn’t been super great.

Still, one record that doesn’t deserve to be mentioned among the other more mediocre fare we have reviewed this year has made the Record o’ the Month for March of 2013: October Falls‘ brilliant The Plague of a Coming Age. I reviewed the record here, and hell, I even liked it so much that I reviewed it over here. Now that winter is starting to slowly recede from Sweden, The Plague of a Coming Age feels perfectly placed and has continued to grow on me. The increased focus on smart song-writing and a feel perfectly exemplified by the beautiful cover art, October Falls is really coming into its own. I can’t recommend the album high enough and I’m even more excited about what the future holds for this elite project.

October Falls - The Plague of a Coming Age

Honorable Mentions: 

Persefone - Spiritual Migration - ArtworkPersefone // Spiritual Migration — An epic example of sprawling album craft, Spiritual Migration could easily have been the Record o’ the Month. It certainly will end up on a variety of year end lists. While the movement towards djent is a disappointment, it’s hard to be disappointed with the record as a whole. These guys will continue to climb the ranks of heavy metal royalty. Expect them on big tours in no time and probably on a bigger label sooner than later.

Wormed - ExodromosWormed // Exodromos — Not only does Wormed have one of the best artistic and visual profiles in metal these days, they’re also a wicked band doing wicked death metal. Exodromos continues to push the boundaries of their sound and Sgr. Franquelli was more than impressed with the album. It is recommended that fans of death metal – though, those who lack melodic inclinations – check this album out. An expansive album from a great band.

Victor Griffin's In-GravedVictor Griffin’s In-Graved // ST — An old and wily doom hound, Steel Druhm got on the scent of Victor Griffin’s In-Graved and loved it. “While it’s not a doom metal album in the traditional sense, it’s an endearing and addictive hard rock platter close enough to modern-day Pentagram to satisfy most doom fans, and the ’70s hard rock influences feel more organic and authentic than on all those ‘’70s occult rock’ albums.”