The 11 best new metal songs you need to hear this week

Metallica/Powerwolf/Svalbard/Blackgold/Cradle Of Filth
(Image credit: Tim Saccenti/Jonathan Weiner/Matteo Vdiva Fabbiani/Nuclear Blast/Press/Annie Atlasman)

Can somebody explain how it is March already? Anyway, the benefit of time moving way too fast is that we are closer to the release of loads of lovely new albums this month. And another week has brought us all another incredible selection of tracks from all corners of the metal universe.

But first, let's have a look at the results of last week's vote. BABYMETAL came out on top with Light And Darkness with 44% of the vote. It was closely followed by Love Bites with Stand And Deliver (Shoot ‘Em Down) and Sophie Lloyd and Matthew K Heafy’s collaboration Fall Of Man. This week we have brand new Metallica rubbing shoulders with Cradle Of Filth as well as thrash from Enforcer, hardcore from Scowl and nu metal from BLACKGOLD. It's a big one. We want you to tell us which songs excite you most, so don't forget to cast your vote below - and check out the updated playlist at the bottom of the page, featuring some of the best songs 2023 has had to offer so far... 

Metal Hammer line break

Metallica - If Darkness Had A Son

Does anyone do imperious so well as Metallica? There’s a reason they’re the biggest metal band on the planet, and while If Darkness Had A Son dials back some of the thrash vibe of their previous two singles, it doesn’t stray far from the path of world-conquering heavy metal, stomping forward with a sense of unstoppability that leaves no question about how they got to the very top. 

Cradle Of Filth - She Is A Fire

There’s plenty of theatricality to be found in modern extreme metal, but sometimes you just have to return to the source to see how it’s done, She Is A Fire is everything we’ve come to expect from Cradle Of Filth this past decade - an explosive fusion of gothic and black metal elements in an ornate package, vocalist Dani Filth still proving he has one of the highest shrieks on the planet. Still no word on the Ed Sheeran collab yet, mind. 

Powerwolf - No Prayer At Midnight

After selling out their debut shows in the US, Powerwolf show why resistance is futile when it comes to their ultra-bombastic, oh-so-catchy brand of fist-pumping heavy metal. As we’ve come to expect, No Prayer At Midnight has the kind of irresistible massive chorus that begs to be screamed by metalheads in their thousands, underpinned by melodic guitar leads that throw back to metal’s unstoppable commercial peak in the 80s. 

Chthonic - 閃靈 (PATTONKAN 護國山)

When it comes to Asia’s extreme metal, Chthonic remain legends of the scene, pushing boundaries for almost 25 years. Their first single since 2018’s Battlefields Of Asura, Pattonkan sees the band embodying their legacy with an epic, genre-spanning track that incorporates everything from symphonic and folk metal to prog whilst delivering a sense of grandiose extremity that reaffirms yet again that this Taiwanese band are utterly exhilarating and deserve the same recognition that international acts running from Sepultura to Babymetal and Bloodywood have achieved. 

Svalbard - Eternal Spirits

Svalbard’s brand of reflective, explosive extreme-metal-meets-crust-punk has always struck a chord of emotional resonance, but new single Eternal Spirits also taps into a sense of shared grief for the loss of icons and the impact their artistry has on our lives. Naturally, this is delivered amidst a barrage of blast-beats, sweeping riffs and snarls, vocalist Serena Cherry employing sparse melodies that really underpin the heartfelt lyrical message, proving yet again that Svalbard are one of the UK’s most brilliant extreme bands and that we should all be very, very excited for a new record. 


With a tour supporting Limp Bizkit just a few weeks away, newcomers BLACKGOLD have announced a second EP release, Volume 2 coming in May. Alongside the announcement was new single Way Out, a menacing slice of contemporary nu metal that mixes rapping, snarls and buzzing electronica in an ultra-addictive package. 

PhaseOne x Void Of Vision - Eyes Wide Shut

Continuing their streak of creating crossover ragers with the creme de la creme of modern metalcore, PhaseOne has called on Australia’s finest Void Of Vision for their latest experiment. Blending razor-edge riffs with throbbing blasts of bile-ridden drum and bass, all held together by Jack Bergin’s vicious vocal acrobatics, Eyes Wide Shut is a prime example of how to collide worlds in the most devastating way possible.

Ad Infinitum - From The Ashes

Edging closer and closer to the release of their new record Chapter III: Downfall, Ad Infinitum has whetted the appetite even more so with their finest taster yet. From The Ashes shows off the most melodic and metallic parts of the band, with a chorus that will lodge itself in your head for weeks to come. A spine-tingler and neck-snapper, all wrapped into one wonderful piece of symphonic gorgeousness. Doesn’t get better than that, does it?

Lake Malice - Stop The Party

Currently making their way around Europe with Bloodywood, Lake Malice are making sure that their name is on as many lips as possible. And with tracks like Stop The Party at their disposal, they are destined to be the talk of the town. Dark, chaotic and devilishly fun, the trio ebb and flow between techno breaks and towering heaviness like its second nature. And the best thing is, this is still only the tip of the iceberg.

Enforced - Hanged By My Hand

Thrash continues to thrive in 2023, and the likes of Enforced are leading the charge. Their new record War Remains is dropping next month, and Hanged By My Hand serves as proof of what a savage experience it’s going to be. An unrelenting three minutes of gritty and guttural intensity, brimming with glorious solos and skin-peeling riffs, it’s a break-neck catalyst for unbridled chaos. 

Scowl - Shot Down

Snotty one minute, sleek the next, Scowl are delivering hardcore punk like nobody else at the moment. Gearing up to release their new EP Psychic Dance Routine next month, the latest taste, Shot Down, demonstrates further just how far they are willing to push their sound. From the ravenous and raw introduction to the dancefloor-filling chorus, it’s a brilliant evolution and expansion from one of the genre’s most exciting assets.

A divider for Metal Hammer

Jack Rogers

Jack has yet to hear a breakdown that he hasn't fallen head over heels for. First putting pen to paper for Louder in 2023, he loves nothing more than diving straight into the feels with every band he gets to speak to. On top of bylines in Prog, Rock Sound and Revolver, you’ll also often find him losing his voice at a Lincoln City match or searching for London’s best vegan kebab.

With contributions from