The album and artist I felt like focusing on was the one I opened up upon sitting in my truck and making my way to a Taco Bell, being Mastodon's 2006 release Blood Mountain.
This concept album telling the tale of Wear-wolf like being attempting to place the Crystal Skull at the top of Blood Mountain grooves through a 12-song track listing with decimating speed. There's plenty of brutish vocals and riffs to be had, along with some unique drum play that's adverse to the norm of modern metal. (although I still say the opening drums to "Crystal Skull" are a copy of Sepultura) The first three tracks blister by and open the record with a screaching bull-horn bellow.
If you're looking for great hooks and grooves accompanied by studio vocals and imaginitive story-telling than Mastodon's third album is for you. It perfectly leads into their 2009 release, Crack the Sky. 2006's number-one metal record fails to make you notice that there's a story being told, but in a way, makes up for it in its musical prowress. (acting both as a culprit and hero in this instance)
Just a Taste