Choosing the Top 10 Hard Rock & Metal CD’s of 2010 was the most daunting task ever. 2010 was a terrific year for music. There were so many great releases to consider this year. I can’t remember the last time I had this much trouble formulating a year end list. There were over 40 quality hard rock & metal releases that I re-listened to. With so much good music, it was very hard to choose the best twenty, but these were the best of 2010 in my opinion.
Vain’s All Those Strangers was supposed to be released in 1991, but the financially strapped Island Records buried it. I am grateful that Davy Vain finally led this disc see the light of day. To my ears, this CD sounds like a natural continuation on Vain’s awesome debut, No Regrets. It may have been recorded in 1991, but it was officially released in 2010. It is a worth # 20 of 2010. If you are a fan of Vain, you need to get this disc now!
I used to avoid hard rock bands with female lead singers. I just haven’t found very many that I liked. Sister Sin is one of many bands that totally changed that notion. I loved their last album, Switchblade Serenades, and their new disc True Sound of the Underground is quite good as well.
Wig Wam released their third CD, Non Stop Rock ‘N’ Roll in 2010. Much like their prior releases, their new CD is one heck of a fun listen. If you are a fan of hair metal, or even The Darkness, you need to check out Wig Wam’s latest opus. I think you will enjoy it!
It was refreshing to see Roadrunner Records sign a band with a sound that brings 80’s hard rock to mind. Time to Burn is a pretty solid debut from the Las Vegas rockers. Check out the Hard Rock Hideout Review at the link above.
When Ozzy Osbourne’s latest effort Scream came out, I didn’t really get into it that much. I did like the title track, but found the disc a little lacking. I don’t know if I didn’t give it a fair chance, but a few months later, and Scream has really grown on me. It is much better than I originally though. I like this one enough now, that I am actually considering picking up the Tour Edition (released October 5th) with the added bonus tracks. Sure, it isn’t Diary of the Madman, or The Ultimate Sin, but Scream does rock!
I have listened to Slash’s new solo CD a ton in 2010. After listening to this disc, I must admit that Slash is either a complete genius, or a total nutjob. Never in my wildest dreams would I think a song with Slash & Fergie would work, but it does. I think far too many people didn’t give the song “Beautiful Dangerous” a fair chance due to Fergie’s involvement with the Blackeyed Peas. After hearing this tune, I wondered why she is wasting her time in a pop act. She can flat out sing. Myles Kennedy, M. Shadows, Ian Astbury, Chris Cornell, Lemmy Kilmeister all turn in some solid vocal performances. Sure, I would rather have another Slash’s Snakepit CD, but there are some good tunes on this disc. After hearing the tunes with Myles Kennedy, I would love to see him take the Velvet Revolver job, but I know that won’t happen.
Best new band of 2010? There are several great new bands who made their debut in 2010. UK Rockers Jettblack make a strong case as one of the best new acts with their debut effort, Get Your Hands Dirty. This is another CD that I have played a ton this year. I love it!
SKIN may not be a household name in the United States, but they should have been. They have been putting out quality releases since the mid nineties. Breaking the Silence is SKIN’s final release. It is a shame that the band is calling it a day, but at least they are going out on a high note!
Olli Herman aka H. Oliver Twisted the former lead singer of Crash Diet, returned to his band Reckless Love full time in 2008. The end result is the awesome debut from Reckless Love. Glam metal has never sounded so good in 2010. If you haven’t picked up this CD yet, look for the band’s recently released Cool Edition of the debut, with bonus tracks and an acoustic cover of Def Leppard’s Hysteria! If you haven’t check out Reckless Love yet, I highly recommend that you do. This is a great band with a big future ahead of them!
You gotta love Jason McMaster ! This guy has been blasting out quality hard rock since his Watch Tower days. In 2010, he has put out the best Broken Teeth record yet with Viva La Rock Fantastico. This disc has been a staple on the Hard Rock Hideout Radio show all year.
Hinder’s All American Nightmare didn’t come out until December, but quite honestly, I think they have put out their best effort yet. This CD gets better with repeated plays, and is easily worthy of the top 10 at Hard Rock Hideout. “Red Tail Lights”, “Hey Ho”, “Put That Record On”, and “Waking Up The Devil” are amongst my favorite songs on this CD.
Armored Saint’s lated disc La Raza kind of came and went without a lot of fanfare. The band didn’t tour for La Raza, and it is a crying shame. La Raza is one of the better releases from Arormed Saint.
I consider myself one of the biggest Airbourne fans on the face of the earth ( ok maybe # 2 behind Pascal Carrière). Either way, I knew before No Guts, No Glory was released that I was going to love it, and I do. The band’s debut Running Wild blew me away, so maybe I was expecting to raise the bar with their sophomore effort.While I love this CD, I think No Guts, No Glory is more of a continuation of Running Wild. It doesn’t break any new ground, but it still kicks ass!
Metal album of the year? I say yes! Who would have thought that former T.T. Quick singer Mark Tornillo would have done such a great job as the new singer of Accept. He fits in perfectly, and helped to deliver what is in my opinion one of the best Accept CD’s since the 80’s. No metalhead should be without Accept’s Blood of the Nations.
Krokus is the band that gets no respect in my opinion. The band returned to their classic lineup, and released what is one of the better CD’s in the Krokus Discography with their new CD Hoodoo. This CD has an awesome classic feel to it, and is one that I love to put in my car CD player, and crank up for a long drive. Marc Storace still sounds exactly the same after all of these years. If you are a Krokus fan, you need to get this.
The band formerly known as Warryor, released their debut album Rise of the Tora in 2009. Unfortunately, I didn’t get to hear this CD until 201o. To my ears Black Tora is a band that is very worthy to crack my top five for 2010. These former Rocklahoma participants blast out classic 80’s metal as if they were born in the era. I am very glad that there are bands like Black Tora to carry on with the classic metal sound that I love. Rise of the Tora is a CD not to be missed.
Sweet Jesus, when Christine Sixx introduced me to Taddy Porter, I had no idea what to expect. What I found is a killer rock band that brings together the classic sounds of bands like Led Zeppelin, Bad Company & Grand Funk Railroad. Taddy Porter’s music has more of a 70’s classic rock feel that gives a big boost to revival rock.If you like The Answer, Black Stone Cherry, or Jaded Sun, you need to grab Taddy Porter’s debut CD! It is a great one!
The reunion of Stephen Pearcy with Ratt was a great one for sure. Having Carlos Cavaso as the band’s newest guitar player didn’t hurt either. He helped write some of the better tunes on Infestation. If you are a fan of RATT & Roll, you need to get Infestation now!
The Scorpions narrowly missed coming in #1 in 2010. Sting in the Tail is an awesome way for the band to bid farewell to the fans.If the band would have released the Premium version of their CD first, which has the awesome “Lets Rock” tune, plus five more bonus tracks, this CD without question would have been #1. (The Premium version is only available as an import as of today).
1. Kissin’ Dynamite – Addicted To Metal
Picking a # 1 CD for the year was extremely difficult this year. There was a ton of great music, but when I look at the CD that I kept replaying, and kept going back to, it was Addicted to Metal from Germany’s Kissin’ Dynamite. I have enjoyed this CDa ton. Having a guest vocal from former Accept front man Udo Dirkschneider didn’t hurt the band one bit. This band’s revival rock/ 80’s metal sound always puts a smile on my face. If you missed Addicted to Metal, you need to find this CD now!
The following releases nearly cracked the Top 20, are certainly worth your hard earned cash!
KEEL – Streets of Rock & Roll
Black Label Society – Order of the Black
Iron Maiden – The Final Frontier
Black Water Rising – S/T
Social Code – Rock N Roll
Treat – Coup De Grace
Crazy Lixx – My Religion
Hansel – Never Say Die
Jetboy – Off Your Rocker
Crazy Lixx – My Religion
Overkill – Ironbound
Helloween – 7 Sinners
Dirty Skirty – Long Live Rock N’ Roll
Paul Shortino’s Music Works label signed the band and released their debut effort Rise of the Tora. Not only did Paul Shortino produce this CD, but he also provides background vocals on the song “Warrior”. He must have seen a lot in this young band, and I completely see why.
This disc sounds like it was made in 1984, not 2009. Black Tora may have a retro sound, but make no mistake about it, they flat out rock. Rise of The Tora is cram packed with old school metal riffs that put a huge smile on this rocker’s face. Razer Dave is one of the most impressive new guitarists I have heard in a while. His style seems to encompass a mixture of influences including Eddie Van Halen and KK Downing. Don’t believe me? Listen to Rise of the Tora! This guy can shred!
A singer can make or break a band, and Black Tora’s singer Chris Daniel gets the job done! He delivers solid vocals and plenty of metal screams to keep this listener interested. Edd “The Animal” provides plenty of thunder to drive these songs home.
This CD starts off with the scorching hot tune “Burn Out”. This high-speed rocker quickly establishes that Black Tora isn’t here to fool around. They are out to rock your race off, and with Rise of the Tora, they do just that. You wont find any wimpy power ballads on this CD. This disc is packed from beginning to end with heavy tunes that will make you throw your horns in the air!
“Heart of Fire” is a monstrous tune that needs to be heard by every metalhead on the planet. Some of the additional highlights on this CD include the songs, “Never Enough” “Wild Child”, and “Warrior”. If you are a fan of classic hard rock and metal, check out Black Tora on myspace and grab Rise of the Tora on iTunes or Amazon.com. You will be glad you did!
- Burn Out
- Never Enough
- Wild Child
- Stealing Thunder
- Don’t Drag Me Down
- Born To Rock
- The Slayer
- Hearts on Fire
Black Tora is:
Razor Dave – guitar, vocals
Chris Daniel – vocals, bass
Edd “The Animal” – drums