The top 20 rock albums of 2011…19 Michael Monroe

Sensory Overdrive by Michael Monroe

19.  Sensory Overdrive by Michael Monroe

Released in March of this year, Sensory Overdrive is a spell-binding album by legendary former Hanoi Rocks singer, Michael Monroe and his band that consist of Ginger, Sami Yaffa, Karl Rockfist and Steve Conte.  Sensory Overdrive is his first studio album since 2003 dour Whatcha Want and boy is it worth the wait.

Performances at Download cemented Monroe as a rock god, and the album even won “Album of the Year” award at the 2011 Classic Rock magazine awards.

Album Highlights
Modern Day Pleaser will definitely be one for the live gigs, while 78 and Bombs Away have sublime riffs.  Buy this album from Play.com now

The top 20 rock albums of 2011…

Seeing as we are in 2012, I thought I would review the top 20 rock albums of 2011.  It has been a fantastic year for rock with a whole host of new rock bands, comebacks and reunions and classic rock legends.

Kicking off the top 2o, are 80’s prog rockers Dream Theatre with their 11th album, A Dramatic Turn of Events.

20.  A Dramatic Turn of Events by Dream Theatre

After losing drummer Mike Portney, the search was on for a new stickman, and they found Mike Mangini.  Things couldn’t be better in the Dream Theatre camp, the latest album is a corker, and one of the most anticipated albums of the year.

Album highlights have to be On the Backs of Angels and  Lost Not Forgotten.

Top 100 rock vocalists : And the winner is…….

We are finally here at the number 1 spot, after a long, hard slog, a lot of planning, changing minds and many debates I can finally announce the top rock vocalist of all time.  The cream of the crop, the level by which all other rock vocalists should aspire to.  The one, the only, the greatest, the voice of rock and roll…….

All hail Mr Robert Plant.

Top 100 rock vocalists : 2 Ian Gillan

2.  Ian Gillan (Deep Purple)
After watching countless live dvd’s and clips on YouTube , and then finally seeing the master live in Birmingham, I have come to the conclusion that Gillan is an absolute legend.  I always knew that but seeing him live just re-iterated this fact…..the guy didn’t miss one note!  And he is in his 60’s!  He hasn’t quite got the mobility and stage presence he once had but who cares?  He blew me away…..from the opening track Highway Star through classics such as Black Knight, Woman from Tokyo and of course Smoke on the Water it was 2 hours of pure rock and roll heaven.

We bow in your presence Mr Gillan….

Top 100 rock vocalists : 5 Paul Rodgers

5.  Paul Rodgers (Free, Bad Company)

Probably the least well know singer in the top 10, but former Free and Bad Company singer has a magical voice.  And he stepped in for a certain Freddie Mercury once……nuff said.

If you weren’t a fan, then you will be now.  Sit back and enjoy the talents of Paul Rodgers…..

Top 100 rock vocalists : 6 Axl Rose

6.  Axl Rose (Guns ‘n’ Roses)

Guns ‘n’ Roses vocalist Axl Rose.  You know what?  If you are not a fan of his vocals, then just listen to this acapella version of Welcome to the Jungle.



Top 100 rock vocalists : 7 Bon Scott

7.  Bon Scott (AC/DC)

Now, considering DC are my all time favourite band, many of you may have thought Scott would have been #1.  I wouldn’t be that predictable now would I?

Now as much as Scott was pure entertainment on a stage, he certainly isn’t the greatest.  However, Scott would captivate his audience with his sexual innuendo’s, tight jeans, hairy chest and a cheeky smile….hang on, he was a rock singer – so was this for the girls or boys?  Who cares…

He wrote many a song on early DC albums Highway to Hell, TNT, Powerage, Let there be rock and Dirty Deeds, and when Scott sadly passed away in February 1980, many thought that was the end of AC/DC as was the legacy he left.  However, he would have wanted the band to continue, and promptly appointed Brian Johnson from relatively unknown band Geordie.  Before you could blink their best ever selling album Back in Black was released as a tribute the great man and soon became the second biggest selling album of all time.


Album review – Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea by Black Stone Cherry

Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea

It’s not often you come across an album that you know you are going to love and listen to over and over agin, is it?  Well, I have found one.  Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea  by the sublime Black Stone Cherry is, quite simply, a stunning album.  From the opening track, the dark, rustic tone of White Trash Millionaire  to the final track Die For You, it just doesn’t get tired.  I have listened to it at least 12-15 times already, and it keeps getting better and better.  Even the tracks I didn’t like at the beginning seem to be turning into some of the best songs.  Now that for me is a sign of a star record in the making!  “Record”?  How old am I..??

Anyway the track listing:

1.  White Trash Millionaire – the sole reason I bought the album in the first place.  Stunning opening with some deep and meaningful lyrics.  Lead singer, Chris Robertson’s vocals are epic and the riffs equally so.  This is a true rock anthem.  9/10.

2.  Killing Floor – Very dark, mysterious, underground feel.  Excellent track if you are in a bad mood so you can growl as you sing (or is that just me?).  7/10.

3.  In My Blood – Stunning song.  Excellent vocals and equally good riff, it’s a song that lifts you up after Killing Floor.  8/10.

4.  Such a Shame – Dirty, dirty riff.  Sounds a bet metal but don’t let that put you off, it’s a belter!  8/10.

5.  Won’t Let Go – A much slower track, but it seems whatever genre of song (does that make sense?) it seems to work.  8/10.

6.  Blame it on the Boom Boom – Single from the album, and as close to a pop-rock song as you will find here.  Utterly addictive mind.  9/10.

7.  Like I Roll – It says it all when one of the poorer tracks still manages to get a hefty seven.  7/10.

8.  Can’t You See – The standard isn’t really dropping yet, another great track.  7/10.

9.  Let Me See You Shake – A mixture of rock ‘n’ roll, blues and country in this belter of a track.  8/10.

10. Stay – Beautiful song with actually meaningful lyrics.  Wouldn’t have thought that would you?  9/10.

11. Change – There is no letting up.  Another decent track.  7/10.

12. All I’m Dreaming Of – Another slower song and another excellent rock track.  Wow – this album rocks!  8/10.

Bonus tracks:

13. Staring at the Mirror – hmmmmm, unsure of this but still a half decent track, seems to be sloping off a bit, but then again these are bonus tracks.  6/10.

14. Fade Away –  Maybe not.  Love Fade Away.  8/10.

15. Die For You – Disappointing end to a fantastic album.  Can’t complain really tho, it’s not often you get 15 tracks of this calibre.  5/10.

At the end of the day, this is a truly superb album, and I would highly recommend this to anyone who likes rock, rock ‘n’ roll, blues, country, hard rock or metal.  It’s not often you listen to the first few songs of an album and know you are going to love the band, not just the album.  That is all I will say.  Buy it.  Now.  Plus they are doing a UK tour with Rival Sons.  Should be epic…

Top 100 rock vocalists : 9 Bruce Dickinson

9.  Bruce Dickinson (Iron Maiden)
This guy’s voice is just incredible.  If you are not too familiar with the name then shame on you – he was / is the lead singer of heavy metal, er, heavyweights, Iron Maiden.  What I really like about Dickinson is his need to piss people off, he is a pure unadulterated rebel.  He will defy anyone to get his point across (remember the episode with Cliff Richard?).  And then there was the whole shenanigans of the Bring your daughter to the slaughter single.

 Bruce Dickinson is everything that rock and roll should be.