--- Top Ten / Black Metal ---
- Ildjarn - Det frysende nordariket
Harsh, raw and abstract.
- Mysticum - Lost Masters of the Universe
Although In the Streams of Inferno is great, this compilation has a better presentation of the same songs from earlier demos and other releases, plus other tracks that are unmissable ("Black Magic Mushrooms").
- Dodheimsgard - Kronet til Konge
Aldrahn on guitars/vocals and Fenriz notably on bass.
- Immortal - Pure Holocaust
Immortal's high-water mark.
- Zyklon-B - Blood Must Be Shed
Kind of a "supergroup" line-up (Aldrahn, Samoth, Ihsahn, and Frost). Just under 11 minutes long, but some of the best black metal ever recorded.
- Mayhem - De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas
It stands alone for what it is, enough said.
- Emperor - Emperor/Wrath of the Tyrant
Classic early Emperor.
- Niden Div. 187 - Impergium/Towards Judgement
Both Niden releases on this compilation. The music here paints a portrait of war and death with a sound that encircles the listener within its realm.
- Tartaros - The Grand Psychotic Castle
This EP is goddamn strange and ballsy.
- Darkthrone - A Blaze in the Northern Sky
Of all Darkthrone's albums, this one resonates with me the most.
Runners up: Marduk - Those of the Unlight, Necromantia - Crossing the Fiery Path, Arcturus - Constellation, Sort Vokter - Folkloric Necro Metal
Note: there's no particular order to this list, and I chose albums that I've liked for a long time and often come back to instead of what I've been listening to lately.