“Bigger and better than any awards show before it” – Adam Barrett takes us through the Metal Hammer ‘three decades’ nominations

Metal Hammer has announced the 2016 Golden Gods awards show, however this is no normal Golden God Awards show. Metal Hammer are celebrating three decades of metal celebration and have promised an event that is bigger and better than any of the award shows before it and they have teased something they have stated as “very special” that “will never be repeated ever. Seriously, it’s going to be an ‘I was there’ moment”

Just like previous years, Metal Hammer have opened the doors to the public to vote for a winner in each category as well as categories that will only be voted on by Metal Hammer themselves. Want to cast your vote? Head over to the official Metal Hammer website to decide who gets your votes and decide who wins. Voting also gives you a chance to win tickets to the event itself. Here is a brief rundown of the categories and we will be voting for: 

Best New Band

This category is for the best new bands that have been making everyone’s head bang and jaws drop.

Nominees – Black Peaks, Cane Hill, Creeper, Heck, The Black Queen.

Our Pick – Black peaks

Blending raw, hard hitting riffs that will leave you feeling dirty with vocal melodies that seem to take inspiration from Mastadon and Karnivool with a healthy does of prog rock style time signarure shifts, these guys have my vote.

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Best Underground

Dedicated to the bands that continue to do great things under the surface. 

Nominees – Enslaved, Myrkur, Rotting Christ, Sunn O))), Tribulation.

Our Pick – Rotting Christ

This wasn’t a difficult one, Rotting Christ having a sound that’s simultaneously soul crushingly heavy as well as having an atmosphere that is bigger than the stratosphere cements this vote. 

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Best UK Band

For the bands that really solidify the UK’s ability to churn out top quality acts.

Nominees – Architects, Asking Alexandria, Cradle Of Filth, TesseracT, The Prodigy. 

Our Pick – Architects

Architects have proven they can keep going from strength to strength since third album ‘Hollow Crown’ was the first album that penetrated the UK charts and the lads have only gone and hit higher chart listings with each album, culminating in ‘Lost Forever // Lost Together’ hitting record positions across the board, and with ‘Lost Forever // Lost Together’ being their best work yet, three festival performances for 2016 and a new album on the horizon its hard to imagine them losing that momentum in the near future. 

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Best International Band

For bands that are tearing it up globally.

Nominees – Amon Amarth, Babymetal, Ghost, Killswitch Engage, Slayer. 

Our Pick – Babymetal

Did this one really need a vote? Babymetal have turned in to a global metal phenomenon in the last few years and with the release of their latest record ‘Metal Resistance’ they continued to prove they can write awesome and fun music. 

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Bands rising through the ranks.

Nominees – Avatar, Beartooth, Deafheaven, Northlane, We Came As Romans. 

Our Pick – Northlane

They lost their frontman then rapidly gained a new singer that filled the shoes of their previous frontman and then released  ‘Node’ to critical success. These guys are killing it right now. 

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Best Live Band

For the bands that perform live shows that leave you speechless.

Nominees – Anthrax, Bring Me The Horizon, Lamb Of God, Nightwish, Parkway Drive. 

Our Pick – Bring Me The Horizon

Sheffield based metallers Bring Me The Horizon consistently fill arenas across the country, and together with every song on latest album ‘That’s The Spirit’ a lung emptying anthem, its easy to see why they would take my vote but they have a hefty amount of competition to contend with. 

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Dimebag Darrel Shredder Award

For the guitarists who can rip a fretboard.

Nominees – Alpha (Ghost), Graham ‘Pin’ Pinney (SiKth), Joe Duplantier (Gojira), Kristan Dawson (Bury Tomorrow), Lzzy Hale (Halestorm). 

Our Pick  – Graham ‘Pin’ Pinney

Whether you know Pin from SiKth or Aliases, his style is a hallmark of tech – metal in its own right. Making full use of syncopation, odd time signatures, a multitude of playing techniques and the entirety of the fretboard Pin is our pick for this award. Have you ever seen him play? Not only is the guy flawless but he makes it look so easy to do to boot. 

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Best Independent Label

The small labels that are doing God’s work in bringing us new and upcoming bands.

Nominees – Basick Records, Holy Roar, Prosthetic Records, Season Of Mist, UNFD. 

Our Pick – Basick Records

These guys continue to sign acts that consistently go above their craft, and they all genuinely care about the underground UK metal scene and have in recent years signed international bands like Uneven Stucture and Skyharbor. Beginning with the signing of FellSilent they continued to sign bands that were unique in their own rights including tech – metal heavyweights SiKth, Canada based shredders Intervals and prog rock trio Heights. They don’t have a huge amount of artists on their roster but the ones they do are ones to look out for now, in the future. 

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Best Video

Dedicated to bands who have gone beyond the standard band performance videos.

Nominees – Anthrax (Blood Eagle Wings), Iron Maiden (Speed Of Light), New Years Day (I’m About To Break You), Parkway Drive (Vice Grip), Slayer (Relentless). 

Our Pick – New Years Day ‘I’m About To Break You’

New Years Day went full Mad Max with this video with every prop and clothing contributing the aesthetic. Plus I’m a massive sucker for post apocalyptic themed media. 

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Best Video Game

For the game that gave the most people square eyes. 

Nominees – Destiny: The Taken King, Fallout 4, Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain, Star Wars: Battlefront, Until Dawn. 

Our Pick  – Until Dawn

This game blended B movie gore and drama with slasher flick levels of psychological horror that culminated in some rather awesome twists. Definitely worth the vote. 

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The last few awards aren’t up for public nomination as they will be decided by Metal Hammer and announced on the night, but we thought we would take a shot at these ones too. 

Best Album

Dedicated to the best album released in the last year. 

Our Pick – Fleshgod Apocalypse ‘King’

2013’s ‘Labyrinth’ was a solid death metal release but there was so much room for improvement and then they released ‘King’ earlier this year and oh boy what a step up. Production is miles above their previous releases with all the instruments sitting nicely in the mix and the songwriting has only gotten better and better. Every song on ‘King’ is a song to remember and not many albums can pull that level of consistency off. 

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Riff Lord

Behind every top tier act is a guitarist who’s riffs resonate everywhere. 

Our Picks – Sylvain Coudret and David Andersson (Soilwork)

Listen to any song off the last three Soilwork records and you’ll hear their work. Blending technical riffs with haunting melodies and a crushing weight behind them, their riffs will stay in our heads for years to come. 

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A hero to that has inspired countless artists.

Our Pick – Meshuggah

To this day Meshuggah still inspire countless guitarists to get their eight strings and write raw heavy bouncy riffs whilst continuing to push the limits of what they and their instruments can do. 

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Dedicated to someone who is recognised above the music. 

Our Pick – Ziltoid, The Omniscient

Ziltoid is a puppet alien who essentially wants coffee and hates humans. Hellbent on enslaving the human race, but we wouldn’t mind. It would be interesting to get insight in to his mind. 

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Global Metal Award

The award for bands who struggle to get their music recognised both inside and outside their country. 

Our Pick – Leander (Leander Rising/Leander Kills)

Hungarian metalhead Leander is known outside of his home country but not by many and that is a crying shame. He blends prog elements, classical music, ball crushing riffs and anthem level choruses for an all out assault on your ears that no one else has done.  

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Spirit Of Hammer

Dedicated to the people that embody everything we love about metal. 

Our Pick – You, the fans. 

Yeah we know it seems like a cop-out, but metal shows wouldn’t be what they are if it wasn’t for every fan who goes to shows, moshes along to their favourite bands and drags each other out of the pits when they go under. You guys rule. 

The Golden God

Dedicated to the ones who have helped define heavy music in the last four decades. 

Our Pick – Devin Townsend

This man consistently proves to be a symbol of what metal musicians should aspire to be. Humble in his craft but always seeking to be better whilst simultaneously giving off an aura of positivity, humour and pride in what he does, he is THE Golden God to us over at GIGsoup.

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The awards show has been taken to the Eventim Apollo in Hammersmith on June the 13th  and to be a part of metal history all it takes is to buy a ticket for £6.66. Metal Hammer have sweetened the deal as a ticket purchased also comes with three months free Teamrock plus membership giving you access to all online magasine content from Metal Hammer, Classic Rock and more with all ticket proceeds going to Teenage Cancer Trust, Nordoff Robins and Childline to top it all off. 

This Metal Hammer Golden Gods Awards 30th Anniversary article was written by Adam Barrett, a GIGsoup contributor