Welp, it’s that time of year again. Nooooo, not that time. Get away from me with that mistletoe. It’s time to roll out our Top 10 albums of the year. This year saw a resurgence of rock so to speak. With strong releases from new artists like Dead Sara and Otherwise. It also saw the return of grungers Soundgarden, and a new album from recently inducted Rock and Roll Hall of Famers Rush. To say there weren’t many to choose from would be a flat out lie. There were strong releases from a multitude of artists that just narrowly missed the list. Here are a few: Fear Factory – The Industrialist, Project 86 – Wait For The Siren, Charm City Devils – Sins, and Stone Sour – House of Gold and Bones. So, it’s with great debate that the site and all the writers have converged to present to you our Top 10 albums for 2012.10. Royal Bliss – Waiting Out the Storm
After a short break from recording, and a quick appearance from Neal Middleton on The Voice, Royal Bliss returned in early January with what is quite possibly their best release yet. From the honesty in the lyrics, to the soulfulness in the vocals, Neal Middleton has really brought together all of the life lessons learned over the last 15 years as a band, into a nice neat little package.
Highlights include: Crazy, Bleed My Soul, Monster
Check out the video for Crazy below:
The eccentric Jack White returns with Blunderbuss. This being his first solo album, after years of success in multiple band settings. Not one to shy away from who he is, White delivers a multitude of genre bending songs that are unquestionably Jack White. From organs, to fiddles, to fuzzed out guitars; this album has it all.
Highlights include: Sixteen Saltines, Freedom At 21, Take Me With You When You Go
Check out the video for Sixteen Saltines below:
Chicago natives Janus released their follow to the acclaimed Red Right Return. Which included the ever popular Eyesore. Stains was the first single off of Nox Aeris, and in our opinion was a great single. This album was overlooked by a lot, hopefully this article will open a few eyes to the brilliance of this album.
Highlights include: Stains, Numb, Promise To No One
Check out the lyric video of Stains below:
Las Vegas rockers Otherwise released their Century Media debut True Love Never Dies. After years of paying dues in and around the Vegas scene, Sirius XM DJ Jose Mangin felt their song Soldiers deserved to be widely released, and did his part in helping them secure their deal. That song, is widely considered one of the biggest rock songs of the year. A fantastic “debut” album and well worth your time and efforts.
Highlights include: Soldiers, Heaven, I Don’t Apologize
Check out the video for Soldiers below:
Returning to the form that made them popular to begin with, Prong brings the pain on Carved Into Stone. Guitarist/Vocalist Tommy Victor hasn’t sounded this good since the early days of Prong. Prong is one of the more influential groups you will ever find, but rarely gets the credit they deserve. With Carved Into Stone, for me at least, it’s the best album since Beg To Differ, which was released on the same day as Nirvana’s Nevermind album back in 1991.
Highlights include: Carved Into Stone, Revenge (Best Served Cold), Ammunition
Check out the video for Revenge (Best Served Cold) below:
This double album has received great praise across the industry, and it’s certainly deserved it. Unfortunately for the band, they were involved in a bus crash earlier this year that has taken them off the road. With no way to bring the music to the people, a lot of people missed out on this one. We personally can’t wait for the band to get back out there, and really deliver these songs.
Highlights include: Take My Bones Away, March To The Sea, Board Up The House, The Line Between
Check out the video for Take My Bones Away below:
Hurt took the better part of three, nearly four years to craft The Crux. The result is quite possibly the most polished Hurt release yet. Still with all the elements that have made them who they are, J. Loren delivers a lyrical depth like few can. Their intensity live is something to behold, and we think they captured that on this album.
Highlights include: How We End Up Alone, Caught In The Rain, When It’s Cold, So When
Check out the video for How We End Up Alone below:
Retro rockers is a term thrown around a lot when it comes to Rival Sons. These guys have all the elements of what made Rock and Roll what it is today. To call it retro, would be a dismissal of what they are doing though. Creating a vibe, a look, and a sound like no one else today, Rival Sons has delivered their most diverse album yet. Look for upcoming US dates, and for this band to really start to garner the attention they deserve here in the States. The US CD release of this one is in January 2013, but you can pick it up on iTunes now.
Highlights include: Keep on Swingin’, When The Sun Comes Up, Run From Revelation, Jordan
Check out the video for Keep On Swingin’ below:
What can you say about Foxy Shazam? My goodness what an album they have unleashed upon the world. Equipped with one of, if not the best live show in rock, with this album the band just became a complete package. This album is pure fun, pure rock, and pure Foxy Shazam. If you’re looking for a fun album that will rock your balls off, this is it.
Highlights include: I Like It, Last Chance At Love, Church Of Rock And Roll, Holy Touch, The Temple
Check out the video for I Like It below:
Stoner rock veterans The Sword bring forth Apocryphon. With a million early Black Sabbath comparisons, you have to figure there is some validity to that. This album has not left my rotation yet. I find something new about it each and every time I listen to it. A stellar album, from one of the coolest bands out there. A novel approach huh? Oh, be sure and pick up the deluxe version. It includes several live songs and a monster cover of Cheap Sunglasses by ZZ Top.
Highlights include: Veil of Isis, Cloak of Feathers, Dying Earth, Seven Sisters
Check out the video for Veil Of Isis below:
We hope you’ve enjoyed our list. I’m sure there are a few of you that can tell us what we left out. Feel free to add them in the comments. Tell us if we nailed it, or if we’re idiots. We wanna know!