Good Rock Bands
Although it sometimes seems like they’re everywhere, good rock bands are hard to come by. In a musical genre where it’s all been done before, it takes a special mixture of dedicated musicians to create something unique in rock music. Only the most talented and creative bands can pull it off.
- ZZ Top Formed in Texas in 1969, this rock band created their sound by injecting a heavy dose of blues influence into their music. The band didn’t find major mainstream success until the 1983 album “Eliminator,” when songs like “Gimmie All Your Lovin’” and the synth-blues anthem “Legs” showed the world how good this rock band could be.
- Led Zeppelin One of the most highly regarded rock bands of all time, this quartet still receives heavy airplay on classic rock stations across the globe. Robert Plant’s soaring vocals meshed with Jimmy Page’s mind-boggling guitar riffs to create a truly explosive sound. The band is best experienced by listening to 1971 album “Led Zeppelin IV.” Songs like “Stairway To Heaven” and “Black Dog” encapsulate this rock band’s legacy.
- The Rolling Stones Since forming in Britain in the early 1960’s, this rock band has been a constant presence in the musical landscape. Mick Jagger and the gang are synonymous with rock music, providing dozens of classic songs that still sound good today. The band’s standout album is 1971’s “Exile On Main Street,” which features immortal tracks like “Tumbling Dice” and “Shine A Light.”
- The Doors As far as good rock bands go, you can’t do much better than these guys. The Doors pioneered mainstream acid rock, giving misguided youth a soundtrack to their self-discoveries. Before front man Jim Morrison’s death in 1971, this rock band produced a handful of immortal albums, most notably 1967’s “The Doors,” which contained “Light My Fire” and “The End.”
- Def Leppard After forming in the working-class town of Sheffield, England in the late 1970’s, this rock band began to produce the uncompromising, guitar-driven songs that would propel them to success. Def Leppard became one of the biggest rock bands in the world with 1987’s “Hysteria” and the arena anthems “Pour Some Sugar On Me” and “Armageddon It.”
- Van Halen Combining guitar virtuoso Eddie Van Halen with unpredictable front man David Lee Roth was one of the best ideas in the history of rock music. The band’s lasting legacy is their 1984 album, appropriately titled “1984.” Songs like “Hot For Teacher” and “Panama” best encapsulate this rock band’s unique mix of melody and talent.
- The All-American Rejects This modern rock band is a relatively new presence on the scene, releasing their first major-label album in 2003. The band quickly earned a devoted following, finding mainstream success with 2005’s “Move Along.” Along with the title track, songs like “Dirty Little Secret” and “It Ends Tonight” showed the band’s knack for writing good, melody-driven rock songs.
- Kiss Of all good rock bands, this group is the most savvy when it comes to self-promotion. Kiss’ music is almost secondary to their diverse business ventures and visually stimulating live shows, but once you get past the flash, classic albums like 1976’s “Destroyer” are solid rock n’ roll compositions.
- The Police During the new-wave revolution in the early 1980’s, this rock band managed to stand out with their well-written, melodic songs. 1981’s “Ghost in the Machine” is the band’s strongest album, fueled by classic tunes like “Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic.”
- Tool Reclusive and mysterious, Tool has captured the imaginations of rock music fans with their ominous persona and unique musical style. Though this progressive metal band is best-known for 1993’s “Undertow” and their award-winning subsequent releases, the raw power of the 1992 EP “Opiate” is the standout in their catalog.