I'm currently on this Hero Project to review every metal album in my collection; below are excerpts from the second chunk of this.
Sentenced - The Cold White Light [6/7]
"...still as fresh and awesome as when I bought it (day of US release, but nobody really cares). It's not Amok, but the blend of crush and lyricalism is even better developed than on Crimson..."
Dream Evil - The Book of Heavy Metal [5/7]
"...despite coming from Wisconsin, there's still only so much cheese that I can put up with at a time. Other people may like this more, and I know that this isn't a band to take seriously by any stretch, but come on."
Hypocrisy - Maximum Abduction [5/7]
"...not a CD for listening to, this is a CD to leave front-out on your shelf to impress visitors. It's got four straight-up awesome songs, but all are available elsewhere, on Hypocrisy albums that you ought to own anyways...and it's undefined what this shape-CD...will do to your CD player."
Kreator - Out Of The Dark ...Into The Light [5/7]
"....rawer and less polished... I don't think it's essential save for Kreator and general D-thrash fans."
Halford - Resurrection [6/7]
"Sure, it's not Priest, and there's some stuff that's not the most inspired, but what metal fans wanted -- and got -- from this record was Rob Halford doing metal that played to his colossal talents again..."
Dropkick Murphys - Singles Collection Volume 2 [6/7]
"...the true drawing point is the spread covered by this disc, which is a condensed education in crossover... The Dropkicks may be a mainly punk band, but they pull from the same pool of punk, hardcore, and proto-thrash metal (AC/DC, Motorhead) that Cryptic Slaughter and Bad Brains came out of..."
Symphony X - The Odyssey [5/7]
"The general framework is progressive, somewhere between Yes and Evergrey, but Mike Romeo's razor-wire thrash/death guitar tone is never far, either up front or lurking at the edges as the keyboards and '70s vocals swirl and crescendo. It's cool, but this is not the album that it's coolest on."
Dimmu Borgir - Death Cult Armageddon [5/7]
"It's not the world's best record, but it's pretty good, and while far from true, is a nice introduction to black metal for those who either can't find or don't have the constitution yet for Emperor's Anthems."
Falkenbach - Heralding The Fireblade [5/7]
"Bathory already went where Falkenbach goes here, but if Quorthon can hear this one blaring, he's surely smiling, and that in itself is something to be proud of."
Iced Earth - The Glorious Burden [5/7]
"...a technically good record, and there are some very good pieces, including the Gettysburg trilogy -- and any metalheads who discover the film from the album will see that as a direct positive -- but there are also a bunch of slack spots..."
Soilwork - Natural Born Chaos [6/7]
"The place of melodicity in melodic death metal remains difficult, but Soilwork come very close to the ideal mark here..."
In Flames - Whoracle [7/7]
"Dark Tranquillity may be more intelligent and evolved, but In Flames have always been more accessible, and that accessibility combined on this disc with a Gothenburg masterpiece to throw the doors of the scene open to the idea of NWOSDM."
Destruction - The Antichrist [5/7]
"...quality thrash, well-crafted, but there's little variation, and the ripping riffs and hooks fade after a while."
Dropkick Murphys - Sing Loud, Sing Proud! [6/7]
"...the balance that the Dropkicks strike on this one catches the spirit of Irishness with as much accuracy, though from a completely different angle, as Primordial have done on recent works."
Morbid Angel - Domination [6/7]
"Morbid Angel's one-album sojourn on WB will forever remind people that major labels don't know what to do with real extreme metal, but if they listen to the record in question, they'll at least be able to bear in mind that Trey et al gave their label something great to work with."
Enslaved - Mardraum [7/7]
"...the mix of aggro and shoegazing -- and the way it's done, the power and subtlety wrapped around each other -- here stands apart as the original and best. If you can take this music, you should own this album, regardless of whether black metal and post-black metal are your cup of tea."
Sigh - Infidel Art [5/7]
"...under no conventionally accepted definition of "black metal" does this share mindshare with Mayhem and Darkthrone. Mirai et al have just barely started on their development here, but all the elements are in place for something so absolutely unique as to defy easy description."