Best Vocalist of 2015 – 5th Annual Loudwire Music Awards
Frontman, frontwoman, singer, vocalist — whatever you want to call them, 2015 saw some stellar performances from these 10 nominees who are the center of attention in their bands. Singing, screaming, growling, grunting, shrieking, wailing and crooning all fit within the realm of what these dynamic contenders bring to the table.
From the studio to the stage, these 10 have it all, so take everything into consideration when placing your votes for the Best Vocalist of 2015 in the 5th Annual Loudwire Music Awards! Check out the nominees below! Vote every hour until the polls close on Dec. 1 at 8AM ET.
Tomi Joutsen is a dual threat singer who can sound so majestic and beautiful and flip the switch to become a growling demon. Regardless of the vocal style he employs, he remains intelligible throughout, creating a nice push and pull feel to the melodic anthems Amorphis continue to churn out.
Breaking Benjamin staged a major comeback this year, led by frontman Ben Burnley. The singer has revealed that he lives in constant and agonizing pain as he continues to battle various medical conditions, but he uses it as fuel for his musical fire. His crisp, soaring, melancholic voice delivers beautiful hooks on the band’s chart-topping album Dark Before Dawn. Burnley makes it feel like the struggle was worth it.
David Draiman and Disturbed are back! After a four year hiatus, the band roared right back into the spotlight where they’re most comfortable with a No. 1 album in Immortalized. The singer kept active during the hiatus, but fans are excited to have one of the most identifiable voices in hard rock back where he belongs, fronting Disturbed.
It had been almost two decades since Faith No More released any new music, but Mike Patton and company made it feel like they never left with Sol Invictus. The chameleon-like singer can adapt to anything the band throws at him from operatic moments, to childish innocence, to maniacal screaming, to circus-esque moments. There’s seemingly nothing Mike Patton can’t and won’t do.
Papa Emeritus III
Ghost keep getting bigger and bigger with each release, altering their sound to fit new concepts and themes. One constant is the voice of Papa Emeritus no matter what incarnation he is in. The third incarnation, Papa Emeritus III, and his honey-throated voice is like silk adorning Ghost’s sacrilegious musical art. Soft and comforting, he creates on of the most unique atmospheres in heavy music today.
Lzzy Hale has an aggressive rock voice, singing every word with conviction and still delivering hook after hook. Her voice hits hard with well-timed phrasing that gives Halestorm their anthemic feel, as evidenced on their latest album Into the Wild Life. Sounding like she’s on a mission to rock, it feels like there’s no stopping her on her quest for rock dominance.
With one of the most maddening roars in metal, Randy Blythe pulled off a top-notch studio performance on VII: Storm und Drang. His banshee shrieks coupled with bowel-scraping gutturals help give Lamb of God so much energy in the studio, which certainly comes across on the recordings. He sounds like a man possessed, which is only half the story when it comes to the band’s high-octane live performances. He also proved he can croon, as well, with the change-of-pace song ‘Overlord.’
Possessing one of rock’s most soulful voices, Mlny Parsonz croons and wails like a tortured soul lamenting a regretful past. Her personal experiences of being indoctrinated into a cult during her youth plays out across Royal Thunder’s new album, Crooked Doors. The opening track, “Time Machine,” serves as an overture to the dynamism of her voice.
Brent Smith weaves his way around Shinedown‘s driving hard rock, making every part he sings as catchy as the last. Of course, he explodes over the choruses, making for unforgettable songs off the band’s latest album Threat to Survival. His push and pull style gives the band a lot of swagger, helping keep them at the top for so long.