Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Best Rock CD's of 2014

This week, the 2015 Rock Hall inductees were announced. Other than Stevie Ray Vaughan, this is one of the most boring groups they've had. I've already given my feelings on the Rock Hall when they announced the nominees (Maybe the Rock Hall Should NOT Be in Cleveland). I'm not going to rehash that. You can go back and read it if you want. My opinion hasn't changed.

Instead, to give some recognition to bands that truly deserve it, here are my picks for best CD's of 2014! It was a strong rock music year, but there are some clear standouts. So, with that, here we go:

1.) Slash with Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators - World On Fire
Coming off of Apocalyptic Love, I wasn't sure if they could top that CD. They came out with a 17-song, 76 minute monster of a CD that doesn't let up from the opening title track through the end. You can read the full review I wrote when it first came out here.

2.) Black Label Society - Catacombs of the Black Vatican
Zakk Wylde returned with the strongest CD Black Label Society has put out in years. Zakk Wylde's voice was stronger than it's been in some time and these songs just rock. You're not going to find anything here but straight up hard rock. Check out my full review here.

3.) Foo Fighters - Sonic Highways
Admittedly, this one had to grow on me a little and the HBO show was a great enhancement to the CD. But once these songs sunk in, they shined! Grohl tells a story with his songs that few others are able to these days. Read my full review of the CD and HBO show here.

4.) Tesla - Simplicity
One of the few '80s bands that continue to make music that stands out. This 14 song set sees them still in fine form. Many feel they were able to recapture some of the sound and feel of their early albums. I didn't really get that sense, but that's not a slight in any way. Just another strong release from one of the best bands to come out of the '80s.

5.) Judas Priest - Redeemer of Souls
Judas Priest is back with what may be their final CD. It's classic Judas Priest with the twin guitar attack and screaming Rob Halford vocals. If they've lost anything with age, you won't know it from this CD. Some criticized this CD with being too long, but you'll never see that type of complaint from me. I'd much rather see all of the songs they recorded show up on the record. Let the fans decide which songs they want to listen to. 

There are a few more CD's that need to be mentioned:
Sammy Hagar and Vic Johnson - Lite Roast
This set of acoustic songs from Sammy show us another side. Very entertaining set of songs and a must have if you're a Sammy fan.

Ace Frehley - Space Invader
I'm not a huge fan of solo Ace Frehley, but this CD is damn good. Strong riffs and overall catchy songs show Ace at the best he's been in years.

AC/DC - Rock or Bust
With AC/DC, you know what you're going to get: heavy doses of Angus Young and Brian Johnson's screaming vocals. This is exactly that. It might have been ranked higher if it were released earlier and I had more time to listen to it.

Weird Al Yankovic - Mandatory Fun
I wouldn't normally even mention Weird Al here, but his marketing of this album made many of us take notice remember just how talented he is. He even had his fans fighting for him to play the Super Bowl half time show. "Word Crimes" just might be my all time favorite Weird Al song!

That's my list. What's on your list? Tell me what you agree and disagree with. Thanks for reading! If you like this post, be sure to check out my other posts at and share it with your friends.

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