At the end of every year, I like to celebrate the greatness that happened in the world of rock and roll. Usually, I will reminisce about the great concerts or festivals I attended, write up my 10 favorite hard rock records of the past year, and talk about what excites me for the future. This year, however, I would like to add something else into the mix—I would like to take a moment to reflect on the disappointments of 2011.
Last December, there were some hard rocking moments that I was really looking forward to in the coming year. Unfortunately, not all of them panned out how I would have liked them to. So, join with me now as I recap my five most disappointing hard rock moments of 2011.
5. Van Halen fails to deliver a new record
I was salivating at the end of 2010 when the rumors ran rampant that Van Halen was going into the studio with David Lee Roth to record a brand new album. My heart fluttered with excitement when news leaked that the disc was recorded and just needed mastering. Sweat ran down my face when the band signed a record deal for their latest effort. I could not wait to hear this new Van Halen record. Unfortunately, the band could wait to release it. Despite all of the rumors, sightings, and message board commenting, Van Halen has not released a new album with David Lee Roth. While I am almost certain that this will happen in 2012, I was very sad that it did not happen in 2011.
4.Guns N Roses fail to reunite
Look, I know it was a pipe dream to think that this would happen anyway. I know that Rob Rockitt stated this new version of Guns N Roses is worth seeing live (and I am sure they are fantastic). That being said, I wanted to hear the news that Axl and Slash made up and the original GnFnR was getting back together. It didn’t happen. When the war of words really heated up over the summer, it truly sunk in that there was no way Axl and Slash would ever step foot on the same stage again. It’s sad. I don’t know what Axl’s problem with Slash is. I can speculate that he is probably jealous that the fans love Slash more than him, but who can say? Axl is, and always has been, a strange fellow. And while I may have to check out the new Guns N Roses (and I do hope that they will record another record), I am saddened that there will be no reunion of original members.
3. Aerosmith fails to deliver a new record
After rumors of breakups, new lead singers, and the original members parting ways for good, news surfaced from the Aerosmith camp that the bad boys from Boston were getting back into the studio to (finally) record an album of brand new material. And then Steven Tyler joined a little known show called…oh yeah… American Idol! The band and their management insisted that Steven’s Idol appearance wouldn’t affect the upcoming album, but here it is, the end of 2011, and guess what I’m not getting for Christmas? That’s right! The new Aerosmith album. Do you know why? Because they haven’t FREAKING recorded it yet. Don’t tease me with thoughts of a new album and then disappoint. Every year, Aerosmith drops further and further down my list of favorite bands. It’s sad to think they used to rank as high as number 4. Currently they are somewhere around 104.
2. Social Code’s decision to focus on side projects
If you read my top ten hard rock albums for 2010, then you know how much I love the band Social Code. They are one of the greatest modern rock bands to hit the music scene in a long time. It’s bands like Social Code that keep me excited about new/modern music. After the early 2010 release of Rock N Roll I was stoked about the idea of a new Social Code album in late 2011/early 2012. After their 2010 summer tour across Canada with Airbourne, Social Code went silent, and I figured it was only a matter of time before they were hitting the studio.
Weeks passed with nary a whisper about the band’s whereabouts. The New Year hit and all was silent from Social Code’s camp, except for a semi-recent interview. Spring became summer and the status quo remained. What the hell was going on with Social Code? Then, about two weeks ago, a very cryptic tweet came from Travis Nesbitt, the band’s lead singer. The tweet claimed that “Anything is possible for the future, but right now we are on hyatus (sic). @SIIINES is the new band. Super stoked about it. We still love you.” Damn. No new record for Social Code. I was as excited by the prospect of a new Social Code album as I was about the prospect of Pop Evil’s latest album before it dropped. I just knew that it was going to be great rock and roll. Well, Social Code decided that they had other matters needing their attention. While I still hope there could be a new record in the next year or two, I am severely disappointed that the band has not already released one.
1. Theory of a Deadman’s The Truth Is…
Since their debut album landed in 2002, Theory Of A Deadman has done nothing but release quality rock records. Their first three discs are some of the greatest modern rock that I’ve heard in a long time, especially, Scars & Souvenirs. When the band released The Truth is… this summer, I was excited. A new album from one of my favorite bands found me filled with high expectations and thoughts of greatness. And then I played the album.
The Truth Is… this album sucked. Theory of a Deadman tried so hard to recapture themes from Scars & Souvenirs that made them famous and that is why this album failed. I’m not saying that the band had to go in an entirely new direction, but trying to recreate your last album to recapture market share is a bad idea for any musician. The end result just didn’t live up to their standards, and ultimately the band failed their fans.
With horrendous songs like “The Bitch Came Back,” “Gentleman,” and “Hurricane,” Theory almost lost a fan. The only saving grace to this record is “Lowlife,” a solid song sung in classic Theory style. I’m willing to give them the benefit of the doubt that their next record will prove this album was just a blip on the radar. That being said, nothing disappointed me more this past year than Theory of a Deadman’s The Truth Is….
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