The 9 best new metal songs you need to hear right now

Nightwish/Babymetal/Zeal & Ardor/Defences/Nothing More
(Image credit: Tim Tronkcoe/Christen Ripkens/Press/Fordtogropgy/Dante Dellamore)

Who doesn't love a good team-up? This week we've got a couple of massive ones for you, as Babymetal join forces with electro-dance-metallers Electric Callboy for a brand new single, and rising stars Nothing More enlist the vocal prowess of David Draiman for Angel Song.

But we're getting ahead of ourselves - first the results of last week's vote! We brought you a hefty selection last week, but ultimately the big names won out. German werewolf-lovers Powerwolf took a healthy third spot, while Ice-T's returning crossover menaces Body Count took second. That meant the crown was claimed by Charlotte Wessels, her symphonically-tinged new offering The Exorcism offering grandeur befitting royalty. 

This week we've got all-new music from fan-favourites Nightwish and Zeal & Ardor, as well as rising stars Bridear, Gurt and Defects. As ever, we need your help to decide the best track of the week, so don't forget to cast your vote below. Happy listening!  

Metal Hammer line break

Nightwish - Perfume Of The Timeless

Off the road but never off the board, Nightwish have seemingly put their new free time to good use by working on their most ambitious album to date. Considering they helped turn symphonic metal into an arena-conquering behemoth, that's no small feat but Perfume Of The Timeless is a perfect primer for the classically-inclined, cinematic-quality sound the band have honed in recent years. Clocking in at almost eight-and-a-half minutes, it's definitely on the proggier end of the scale, but never overindulges, instead rising and collapsing with a sense of grandeur and drama that has us itching to hear the rest of Yesterwynde on September 20. 

Babymetal x Electric Callboy - Ratatata

Babymetal have a fruitful history of collaborations, but teaming up with Germany's electro-dance metallers Electric Callboy might be the most brilliantly batshit idea they've ever had. Thankfully Ratatata lives up to expectations; taking full advantage of Electric Callboy's love for eurodance, the track feels like somebody spliced a club banger with brutish mid-00s metalcore, the onomatopoeic chorus easy to chant en masse. We suspect fans won't have to wait ages to hear it live either, with Fox_Fest seeing both bands perform this weekend. 

Zeal & Ardor - Clawing Out

If Zeal & Ardor seemed to be pushing away into entirely new realms with the first GREIF single To My Ilk, then Clawing Out feels like we're on more familiar territory. Sort of. Jutting riffs and intense vocal intonations put the track in the realms of earlier releases, but the stark, jarring effect of the song and its near anxiety-inducing, swivel-eyed delivery also brings to mind some of the more claustrophobic elements of early Slipknot

Nothing More - Angel Song (ft. David Draiman)

Nothing More have been threatening some serious crossover appeal for a decade now, sold-out tours and massive anthems showing their impressive star power. But the band have gone the extra mile on new single Angel Song, teaming up with powerhouse vocalist David Draiman for a stomping, fist-pumping anthem that already feels like the kind of tune that should put a band in front of arenas full of fans. 

Gurt - Appetite For Construction

Gurt might tag themselves as "party doom", but presumbaly the party is only for those who love squalling, tinnitus-inducing rackets. Naturally, we're all for it. Latest single Appetite For Construction sets high-pitched howls against chunky, angular riffs that'll have you wanting to bounce around the room like a human ping-pong ball. Taken from their upcoming new album Satan Etc., it's a fair shout that its Gurt's party and they'll howl if they want to. 

Defences - Gold In The Dark

Driving alt-metal with a message about self-acceptance, Defences' latest single Gold In The Dark has a touch of the emotive, community-oriented air that Linkin Park represented at the turn of the millennium. There are still shades of the band's past in metalcore present in Gold... not least in the snarling breakout that comes in just before the song's final minute, but by and large the track suggests a band looking to exolve and expand their sonic horizons.

Oranssi Pazuzu - Muuntautuja

It's been a while since Finland's Oranssi Pazuzu slipped through some shrouded wormhole at the outer edges of black metal to delve into full psych weirdness, but ties to the venom and bile of the past remain. New single Muuntautuja is the sonic equivalent of a transmission from some distant alien plane, thrumming electronics giving way to angry-god shrieks and growls as the track effectively collapses into a crushing chasm of abjection and electronic feedback. 

Bridear - Still Burning

Two years on from Aegis of Athena, Japan's Bridear are back with another heavy metal stomper in Still Burning. Treading the line where trad metal tips over into power metal bombast, Still Burning is the first single from the group's new album Born Again, due June 28. Recorded with Fredrik Nordström, there's an air of Scandinavian melodeath to both the production and the sound of the song, the band employing their best growls that suggest they'll be trying something different this time out. 

Defects - Echo Chamber

Tapping into the emotive, melodic enormity of End Of Heartache-era Killswitch Engage, Defects' Echo Chamber is the last single to be released ahead of the band's debut album Modern Error, out today. Rising stars in the UK metal scene, the band's chops for catchy, massive-sounding anthems that can unite crowds - and they'll have plenty of opportunities for that with Download festival and some headline dates in Birmingham and Manchester looming. 

Rich Hobson

Staff writer for Metal Hammer, Rich has never met a feature he didn't fancy, which is just as well when it comes to covering everything rock, punk and metal for both print and online, be it legendary events like Rock In Rio or Clash Of The Titans or seeking out exciting new bands like Nine Treasures, Jinjer and Sleep Token.