Mary Ouellette, SheWillShootYou.com
We’re not even halfway through 2012 and there have already been a number of high quality hard rock albums released. So far, 2012 is looking like the year of the woman in rock, as several female-fronted bands have unleashed critically acclaimed discs, including Lacuna Coil, Halestorm, Dead Sara and Nightwish, to name a few. But there's still room for the boys on this list, as such acts as Marilyn Manson and Shinedown have released strong albums this year. As new albums continue to come out in 2012, we will be updating this list with any discs that are worthy of cracking the Top 10. In the meantime, check out Loudwire’s current list of the Top 10 Hard Rock Albums of 2012 (So Far).
Taproot’s sixth studio album ‘The Episodes’ is a concept disc that was conceived even before the band released its 2010 album ‘Plead the Fifth.’ Frontman Stephen Richards holds onto his unique distorted, melodic vocals while also belting out thick growls throughout some of the tracks.
'Requiem for the Indifferent'
Dutch symphonic metalers Epica have unleashed their fifth full length disc ‘Requiem for the Indifferent.’ The debut single ‘Storm the Sorrow’ represents the entire tone of the disc. The record offers the tantalizing vocals of frontwoman Simone Simmons, beautiful orchestration but it also has heavy gutturals, edgy riffs, galloping drum patterns and much more.
‘The Church of Rock and Roll’
The psychedelic rockers of Foxy Shazam have infected our ear drums with their single ‘I Like It’ off of their groovy latest album ‘The Church of Rock and Roll.’ The disc is definitely packed with party tunes that have soul, it’s funky and it rocks. From beginning to end, ‘The Church of Rock and Roll’ is complete with big choruses, deep bass lines, falsetto vocals and so much more.
Adrenaline Mob are a supergroup featuring Russell Allen (Symphony X), drummer Mike Portnoy (formerly of Dream Theater) and guitarist Mike Orlando. Their hard-rockin’ debut album ‘Omerta’ includes their catchy single ‘Undaunted,’ as well as a cover of Duran Duran’s ‘Coming Undone' (featuring Halestorm singer Lzzy Hale). The band's touring lineup has been round out by bassist John Moyer (Disturbed).
‘The Strange Case Of…’
Speaking of Lzzy Hale, her band Halestorm takes the sixth spot on the list with their sophomore album ‘The Strange Case Of…’ which is filled with gargantuan and endless vocal range. It’s a wonderful mystery of how long Ms. Hale can keep a note going. The entire band seems to keep going on the road as they have just announced dates for an extensive 2012 world tour.
It’s a major year for Shinedown with the release of their fourth studio album ‘Amaryllis.’ Their single ‘Bully’ and spent several weeks at No. 1 on the rock chart while 'Amaryllis' scored a big debut on the Billboard 200 tally. It was also recently announced that Shinedown would be co-headlining the 2012 Uproar Festival along with Godsmack, Staind, Papa Roach and more.
‘Imaginaerum’ is the latest disc by Finnish symphonic metal band Nightwish. The new album is dark but filled with twists and turns and takes you on a wild roller-coaster ride with a fusion of sounds and melodies. The band will also release a full length feature film of the same name to accompany the record, plus they've also announced a 2012 North American tour set for the fall.
Dead Sara's debut self-titled album is currently being powered by the radio hit ‘Weatherman.’ Frontwoman Emily Armstrong showcases vocal layers that can go from a raspy whisper to a soaring yell, while guitarist Siouxsie Medley delivers some chunky riffs throughout the disc. Check out our exclusive interview with Armstrong and Medley here.
The Italian rockers of Lacuna Coil unleashed their sixth studio record ‘Dark Adrenaline’ this year and they have been on tour nonstop in order to promote it. They kicked off 2012 being part of Gigantour and now they are headlining the ‘Dark Legacy Tour.’ ‘Dark Adrenaline’ is a heavy yet melodic album that beautifully captures Lacuna Coil’s signature sound.
Marilyn Manson has returned with his brand new album ‘Born Villain’ which is his follow up to 2009’s ‘The High End of Low.' The debut single off the album ‘No Reflection’ has been heating up music charts and the record as a whole marks a new musical direction with the same eerie yet poetic essence that Manson fans know and love. Manson himself has referred to 'Born Villain' as his 'comeback album,' and upon listening to the disc, it certainly appears to be a successful comeback.
What Is Your Favorite Album of 2012 So Far? Are any of the above 10 discs one of your favorite rock albums of 2012? If so, tell us which ones?
by: Liz Ramanand