PopMatters' Best Music of 2007 series continues today with the Best Metal Albums of 2007. Stay tuned tomorrow for the year's best world and Americana. More: 60 best albums | 50 best singles | 20 best re-issues.
As a category world music is both useful and frustrating. It puts CDs on the shelves and prevents people picking them up. It is the other-than category: other-than rock, other-than indie, other-than everything. It is the whole world and nothing definite.
2007 was one of the best years for metal in the 2010s. Like other watershed years -- 1983, 1984, and 1991-- it's partially a case of artists peaking at the same time. The year unleashed a wave of superb releases from January straight through November.