• Watch Rick Astley Rock Out to Slipknot’s ‘Duality’

    It’s never too late for a delayed Christmas present and thanks to Rick Astley’s TikTok account, we’ve got the video you never knew you needed to see. Yes, that’s a trench coated Astley rocking guitar along to Slipknot’s “Duality.”

    Since launching his TikTok account in 2020, Astley has delivered a number of wonderfully bizarre clips playing along to well-known pop, rock and alternative songs, but to kick off 2021 in early January, the “Never Gonna Give You Up” singer and RickRoll king brought the heavy by rocking along to Slipknot’s Vol. 3 (The Subliminal Verses) classic. The clip also finds Astley sporting sunglasses and playing against a desert-themed backdrop. Watch and enjoy.

    The deep-voiced red-headed vocalist ruled the pop world in the late ’80s and early ’90s with hits from four studio albums. But it was his breakout song “Never Gonna Give You Up” that has stood the test of time and kept Astley in the spotlight as social media grew and “Rickrolling” – the act of teasing a video online only to replace it with Astley’s “Never Gonna Give You Up” clip – became a popular prank. After a lengthy layoff from recording, Astley returned with new music in 2001 and has recorded sporadically ever since.

    Despite being known for his pop hits, the singer has shown his love for harder music over the years. He’s performed a live mashup with Foo Fighters and covered their music in the past and he’s also added a pretty killer cover of AC/DC’s “Highway to Hell” into shows as well.

    Astley’s TikTok account has gotten off to an entertaining start with the singer aping along to songs from Foo Fighters, MGMT, The Strokes and Pet Shop Boys and actually covering an R.E.M. favorite.

    The 40 Best Cover Songs of 2020

  • Pretty Reckless’ ‘Death By Rock and Roll’ Tops Album Sales Chart

    It was a big week for The Pretty Reckless as the band’s Death By Rock and Roll album debuted atop Billboard’s Top Album Sales chart this past week, one of several charts the album topped once the tallies were compiled.

    According to Billboard, Death By Rock and Roll arrived with 16,000 copies sold in the U.S., giving the band their first chart-topper on the Top Album Sales chart. In addition, the record was No. 1 on the Current Rock Albums chart, the Record Label Independent Albums chart and Internet Albums chart.

    The Top Album Sales chart is based solely on traditional album sales. The Billboard 200 Album chart, which also factors in streaming, had the record at No. 28 this past week.

    During their career, The Pretty Reckless have placed four albums on the Billboard 200, with their 2014 effort Going to Hell receiving the highest placement, landing at No. 5 on the chart.

    The Death By Rock and Roll title track became the band’s fifth chart-topping single on the Mainstream Rock chart last year. In the lead up to the album, the group also released the promotional tracks “Broomsticks” and “25,” while the Tom Morello-featuring “And So It Went” was released as the second single in January.

    68 Best Rock Songs of 2020

  • 11 Pets of Rock + Metal Stars to Follow on Social Media

    Surely, after enduring a year of a pandemic, your social media feeds are in a terribly sorry state. The same people posting the same thing (which is nothing — it’s a pandemic, nobody has a life), the latest memes you’re already so done with by the next day and the same six photos of some cute animals. Here to liven up your life, once more, we’ve rounded up some lovable doggos and feisty cats who call some famous rock and metal musicians their prideful owners.

    It’s time for some new follows and we’re starting with legendary drummer and his pup Mickey. This Maltese-Yorkie mix of Mike Portnoy’s has amassed over 8,000 followers and is always smiling, sitting comfortably on a lap or nestled up under a blanket on the couch. He’s a brave little cancer survivor, too, deserving of a round of a-paws!

    Keeping with drummers, Motley Crue’s Tommy Lee boasts Nina Da Weena Dog and Teenie the Weenie. Teenie is a very recent addition to the home, after Lee and wife Brittany Furlan said goodbye to their dear Wicky earlier in 2021. Our condolences. Dog Heaven gained another angel that day.

    As you’ll see below, we’ve got plenty more pets to follow from band members. There’s Winston Finnegan Luhrs (August Burns Red’s Jake Luhrs) and his beefy little leg hanging over the couch, the classic dog and cat rivalry within the home of Cattle Decapitation’s Travis Ryan, Ice-T’s chonks and more.

    11 Pets of Rock + Metal Stars to Follow on Social Media

    Mike Portnoy’s Dog Mickey

    Follow Mickey here.

    Motley Crue: Tommy Lee’s Dogs Neena Da Weena Dog + Teenie the Weenie

    Follow Neena here and Teenie here.

    Cattle Decapitation: Travis Ryan’s Dog Ona + Cats Nomi and Patty

    Follow Ona, Nomi and Patty here.

    Body Count: Ice-T’s Dogs King Maximus and Princess Alexus

    Follow King Maximus and Princess Alexus here.

    Trivium: Paolo Gregoletto’s Dogs – Lady and Mochi

    Follow Lady and Mochi here.

    August Burns Red: Jake Luhrs’ Dog Winston Finnegan Luhrs

    Follow Winston Finnegan Luhrs here.

    The Word Alive: Telle Smith’s Dogs Colby Jack + Darby

    Follow Colby Jack here and Darby here.

    Ex-Machine Head/Sacred Reich: Dave McClain’s Dog Mr. Indy McClain

    Follow Mr. Indy McClain here.

    49 Rock + Metal Artists Pose With Their Pets

  • Kid Rock Has 18 Songs Ready for Next Studio Album

    It’s been a few years since Kid Rock released his last album, Sweet Southern Sugar, but it looks as though a new record is in the works. During Detroit radio station WRIF’s 50th Anniversary feature checking in with multiple musicians, Rock offered an update on his next album.

    Rock says (at around the 34 minute mark in the player below), “This Covid thing has been crazy for everybody. And my heart goes out to everybody who’s been affected by it, especially people who’ve lost people. But it’s kind of afforded me… I haven’t had this feeling since my first big record, Devil Without a Cause, where I’ve had this much time to sit around and re-write, zero in, replay — just meticulously go song to song to song.”

    He continued, “I’ve got 18 that I’m in love with now, and four more that I wanna record. And I don’t know what the hell I’m gonna do with them. But thank God I’ve got my studio. That’s been my saving grace through this thing.”

    No timeline for the new album’s release was revealed, but Rock sounds well into the record at this point.

    Though Sweet Southern Sugar was Rock’s last studio album in 2017, he did release a greatest hits collection the following year and he issued an ’80s electro song “Quarantine” under the pseudonym DJ Bobby Shazam last year.

    Kid Rock Speaks to Detroit’s WRIF-FM

    2021’s Most Anticipated Rock + Metal Albums

  • 15 Rock + Metal Music Video Cliches

    The history of music videos is fascinating. The surest way to promote a hit new single, viewers watching closely will notice that music videos have specific tropes within various genres.

    Pop music videos tend to be the most avant garde, featuring scenes that literally make no sense or have nothing to do with the song itself (think Britney Spears’s space-Titanic themed “Oops!…I Did It Again” or Lady Gaga’s poolside Dalmatians in “Poker Face”). Hip-hop is littered with voluptuous ladies in sexy, barely-there outfits and over-the-top markers of wealth.

    And of course, rock and metal have their own music video clichés seen in plenty of popular music videos. Now, just because a music video depicts some type of cliché doesn’t mean it’s bad. In fact, there are some straight-up classics in the list below.

    From vixens on cars to sad rain, here are the rock and metal music video tropes we’re used to (and very often tired of) seeing.

    • 1

      Performance Videos in Stereotypical Locales

      Performance videos are essential to rock, metal, punk and hardcore bands — everyone knows it’s all about the live show. Yet, for all the creativity that abounds in these genres, bands automatically default to the same locations: abandoned houses or warehouses, open fields, churches (ironically, of course) and empty swimming pools.

      The common denominator here is that rock and metal bands show up to locations where they’re not wanted. The type of location varies depending on the message: a church for the wicked, an empty pool for the Venice Beach-born skater punks and empty homes that signify a broken family or shattered self.

      Examples: Bring Me The Horizon – “Go To Hell, For Heaven’s Sake”; August Burns Red – “Composure”; Attack! Attack! – “Stick Stickly”

    • 2

      Bands Walking Down the Street Like It’s West Side Story

      They’re comin’ for a rumble! Sporting leather jackets and a don’t-mess-with-me attitude, bands enjoy walking side-by-side down streets, heading directly toward the camera like they’re on a mission.

      They own this town, and everyone should know it. Sometimes they even come face-to-face with a rival street gang, and then it’s a battle of intense facial expressions — winner takes all. Also common is the band leading an army of fans.

      Examples: Motionless In White – “Devil’s Night”; Vanna – “Toxic Pretender”; Michael Jackson “Beat It” complete with knife fight during Eddie Van Halen solo

    • 3

      Relationship Fight

      The breakdowns may sound brutal, but in the end the band is most likely singing a love song. Even big, burly metal dudes get their hearts broken (and, of course, the skinny emo ones). Whether it’s in a motel room or over the phone, yelling at your lover and storming out in a huff or breaking bottles is a rock music video trademark.

      Example: Pierce the Veil – “Caraphernalia”; Nickelback – “Someday”; Bon Jovi “Always”; Guns N’ Roses – “Don’t Cry”

    • 4

      Off-the-Wall Party

      One of the oldest rock and metal music video clichés in the book is as old as rock music itself: crazy, sexy parties. Whether they’re in Hollywood or some random person’s apartment, they give meaning to the phrase “party like a rockstar.” Totally ill-advised and 1000 percent fun, these music videos usually involve Strip Poker, aggressive makeout sessions and drunken hijinks. It’s an extension of tour life and the devil-may-care philosophy that comes with it.

      Examples: Bring Me The Horizon – “Chelsea Smile”; Every Time I Die – “Decayin’ With The Boys”; Beastie Boys – “Fight for Your Right”; Jimmy Eat World – “The Middle”

    • 5

      Trapped In A Box

      Metalcore and post-hardcore bands tend to get trapped in literal glass cases of emotion. The metaphor here is obvious; the quick cuts between camera angles amplify the feelings of claustrophobia and panic.

      In some instances, the imaginary box merely serves to emphasize that the sheer power of the music cannot be contained!

      Regardless of the scenario that inexplicably stuck these musicians in a cube, the lighting is actually what ends up being the most important aesthetic factor in these cramped spaces.

      Examples: Silverstein – “Infinite”; Paramore – “Ignorance”; Wage War – “Low”

    • 6

      Overly Normal

      Pop punk, emo, and rock bands often fall into the trope of exaggerated normalcy in their music videos. These geeky caricatures of the average Joe working a typical 9 to 5 provide clear foils to rock musicians’ rebellious lifestyle. It’s the most obvious declaration of individuality, juxtaposing the headbanger’s life with that of a pencil pusher.

      Examples: Pierce the Veil – “King For A Day”; Halestorm, “Amen”; The All-American Rejects – “Gives You Hell”

    • 7

      Girls on Cars

      This metal music video cliché is so tired and misogynistic, it should’ve completely died out after the 1980s. Alas, the tradition has carried on up to the present day, largely because of musicians desperate to portray the classic rock ’n’ roll image of success. They have money and they’re in the fast lane, but apparently that leaves no room for originality.

      Examples: Falling In Reverse – “Good Girls Bad Guys”; Bowling For Soup – “1985”; Whitesnake – “Here I Go Again”

    • 8

      Satanic or Occult Ritual (Usually Involves Fire)

      Metal bands of all types embrace the weird, the supernatural and the demonic. Satanic and occult rituals are ubiquitous in these music videos, usually featuring hooded figures, altars, and enough wax candles to warrant calling the local fire department. Metal music is all about what is forbidden and the imagery that comes with it, which is why metal bands have some of the most cinematic music videos.

      Examples: Behemoth – “O Father O Satan O Sun!”; Mayhem – “Falsified And Hated”; “Atreyu – Long Live”

    • 9

      High School

      Odds are most of the rock and metal bands you listen to got started in high school. They’re also likely the bands that you listened to in high school, which sets the stage for an incredibly nostalgic experience. These are usually songs about feeling like an outsider or being bullied. This music video trope lends itself to being either really dramatic or really funny, as we remember that high school, for better or worse, was a time of extremes.

      Examples: My Chemical Romance – “I’m Not Okay (I Promise)”; Motley Crue “Smokin’ in the Boys Room”; Pearl Jam “Jeremy”; Blink-182 “Josie”; Simple Plan “I’m Just a Kid”; Nirvana “Smells Like Teen Spirit”; Van Halen – “Hot for Teacher”

    • 10

      Mirroring

      First and foremost, mirroring is originally a horror trope, both in literature and in film. Mirroring or doubling works to throw the viewer’s sense of reality off balance. It’s also a way of getting into the protagonist’s frame of mind. The mirror — or a split screen that acts like a mirror — provides a look into an alternate, imaginary landscape, as well as the musician’s innermost feelings.

      Examples: Motionless In White – “Voices”; Megadeth “Sweating Bullets”; The Used – “The Bird And The Worm”

    • 11

      Lost in the Woods

      Another horror trope that extends to the rock and metal world is that of the woods. In literature, from medieval times up to the present, the woods represent a certain lawlessness and mystery. Likewise, bands wishing to evoke that kind of mood tend to find themselves performing in the woods, which is made all the more strange by the fact that they should have nothing to plug their electric instruments into.

      Examples: Harm’s Way “Mind Control”; Paramore – “Decode”; Weezer – “Lost in the Woods”

    • 12

      Rain, Because Emotions

      Water is one of the most ancient themes in storytelling of any kind, often connoting a sense of sadness and heaviness. Water can also represent purification, which is also common in music, often washing away sadness and pain.

      Examples: Asking Alexandria – “A Prophecy”; As I Lay Dying – “Confined”; Architects – “Downfall”; Guns N’ Roses – “November Rain”; Bullet For My Valentine – “Tears Don’t Fall”

    • 13

      In the Van, On the Road

      Often a band’s first music video is the found-footage of van trips past, travelling between last night’s show in North Carolina and the day’s show in Tennessee. These are youthful, innocent, and adventurous scenes about experiencing freedom for the first time. Conversely, van and tour footage can also be used in montage videos.

      Examples: Journey – “Faithfully”; Motley Crue – “Home Sweet Home”; FFDP – “Battle Born”; Wage War – “Surrounded”; All-American Rejects – “Top Of The World”

    • 14

      Metalcore Postures 101

      Every music genre is accompanied by a certain type of posturing: hip-hop slouches, pop seduces and metalcore flexes. In the case of the last, it is such a popular trope that YouTubers have made names for themselves imitating them. One metalcore posture is for the vocalist to have their arms stretched out and open wide. This is basically an invitation for a challenge: “I know I can take whatever you’ve got, so come at me.” Another metalcore vocalist habit is taking an open palm to the chest, indicating that they’re in this with all of their being.

      Examples: Basically every metalcore music video ever.

    • 15

      Intimidating the Camera

      Some bands take metal posturing to the next level and get down right ferocious, snarling and spitting into the camera. There are also music videos that attempt to do this but fail, and end up being unintentionally hilarious. Either way, the close-up is standard in genres that love to get in peoples’ faces.

      Examples: Parkway Drive – “Shadow Boxing”; Guns N’ Roses – “Garden of Eden”; The Acacia Strain – “Cauterizer”

  • Trippie Red ‘Felt Right’ Making a Rock Record With Travis Barker

    Rapper Trippie Redd has shown hints of his rock and metal influence in the past, but the prolific hitmaker is engaging with the rock world more than ever before on his upcoming Neon Shark Vs. Pegasus deluxe release, which is getting an executive producer assist from Blink-182’s Travis Barker.

    And Barker isn’t the only rocker helping Trippie pull off the transition. Deftones’ Chino Moreno jumps on the song “Geronimo,” Scarlxrd and Zillikami turn up on the album closer “Dead Desert” and Machine Gun Kelly assists on two tracks – “Red Sky” and the single “Pill Breaker,” with the latter also featuring Blackbear.

    Speaking in a statement to Loudwire, Trippie Redd discussed why now was the right time to record a rock record. “I’ve known Travis for a while and always thought it’d be cool to do a project together,” he explained. “I’ve loved rock since I was a kid and grew up on Blink-182. It just felt right to make a rock record with him.”

    Barker has already overseen the transition of one rapper in delivering a rock record, with Machine Gun Kelly delivering one of 2020’s top selling rock efforts, Tickets to My Downfall.

    Trippie counts Slipknot and Rob Zombie as early influences alongside rap icons Tupac Shakur, Nas and Jay-Z. And this past year during the quarantine, he dropped his Pegasus album on Halloween, then took the big step toward realizing his rock side by teaming with Barker for the deluxe version of his record.

    Neon Shark vs. Pegasus is due Feb. 19 via 10K Projects / Caroline. You can check out the artwork and track listing below and pre-orders can be placed here.

    Trippie Redd, Neon Shark vs. Pegasus Artwork + Track Listing

    1. PILL BREAKER FT. BLACKBEAR & MACHINE GUN KELLY
    2. WITHOUT YOU
    3. SWIMMING
    4. FEMALE SHARK
    5. GERONIMO FT. CHINO MORENO
    6. SEA WORLD
    7. RED SKY FT. MACHINE GUN KELLY
    8. MEGLADON
    9. SAVE YOURSELF
    10. DREAMER
    11. IT’S COMING
    12. LEADERS
    13. FROZEN OCEAN
    14. DEAD DESERT FT. SCARLXRD & ZILLAKAMI

    2021’s Most Anticipated Rock + Metal Albums

  • Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Announce 2021 Nominees

    Foo Fighters, Iron Maiden and Rage Against The Machine are among the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame nominees for 2021 induction, which were announced today (Feb. 10).

    As in past years, this crop of nominees reflects iconic artists in other genres, such as Jay-Z and Tina Turner. You can see a full list of this year’s nominees below.

    “This remarkable ballot reflects the diversity and depth of the artists and music the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame celebrates,” says Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Foundation Chairman John Sykes. “These nominees have left an indelible impact on the sonic landscape of the world and influenced countless artists that have followed them.”

    To be eligible for nomination, an individual artist or band must have released its first commercial recording at least 25 years ago.

    Foo Fighters and Iron Maiden are among seven of the nominees who are on the ballot for the first time. The Go-Go’s, Jay-Z, Carole King (as a performer), Fela Kuti and Dionne Warwick are also first-time nominees.

    If Foo Fighters are inducted, Dave Grohl will become a twice-inducted performer. Nirvana were inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2014.

    Inductees will be announced in May, and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame 2021 Induction Ceremony will take place in Cleveland, Ohio this fall.

    2021 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Nominees for Induction:

    Mary J. Blige
    Kate Bush
    Devo
    Foo Fighters
    The Go-Go’s
    Iron Maiden
    Jay-Z
    Chaka Khan
    Carole King
    Fela Kuti
    LL Cool J
    New York Dolls
    Rage Against the Machine
    Todd Rundgren
    Tina Turner
    Dionne Warwick

    As in past years, fans will have a chance to get their say with the “Rock Hall Fan Vote” kicking off today and running through April 30. The top five vote getters will then comprise the “fan ballot” that will be tallied alongside the international voting body of artists, music historians and members of the music industry. You can vote at the rockhall.com website.

    See last year’s inductees here. To donate to the Rock Hall museum and get exclusive induction ticket opportunities, learn more here.

    Rock + Metal Acts That Deserve to Be in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

  • 20 Rock + Metal Bands That Formed 30 Years Ago

    In case you forgot, we’re here once again to remind you just how old you are. The year 1991 was three decades ago, which means Metallica’s Black Album and Nirvana’s Nevermind turn 30 this year.

    We’re celebrating a different kind of birthday this time around though — bands.

    This isn’t a “bands turning 30” kind of celebration, because unfortunately as history has shown us, bands don’t always last that long. Instead, we’re gonna take a look back simply to see which well-known rock and metal band formed in 1991, AKA 30 years ago.

    Perhaps one of the most iconic groups 1991 saw the foundation of was Rage Against the Machine, who would’ve reunited onstage for the first time in around nine years in 2020. Thanks to the coronavirus, that reunion was postponed until 2021, which makes it all the more special as it will also commemorate their 30 year anniversary.

    The early ’90s also saw the rise of Norwegian black metal, so several artists from that subgenre were born in ’91 too, including Varg Vikernes’ Burzum project.

    Check out 18 prominent rock and metal groups that, at some point in 2021, will have formed 30 years ago, below. See our list of albums turning 30 this year here.

    20 Rock + Metal Bands That Formed 30 Years Ago

    46 Rock + Metal Albums You Didn’t Realize Were Turning 30 in 2021

  • Some genius has made Joe Biden do Alex Turner’s ‘That Rock N’ Roll, Eh?’ speech

    Joe Biden‘s inauguration speech yesterday (January 20) has been dubbed over with another iconic speech of our time: Alex Turner‘s 2014 proclamation, ‘That Rock N’ Roll, Eh?’.

    Turner’s speech, from the 2014 BRIT Awards when Arctic Monkeys picked up Album Of The Year for ‘A.M’, fits remarkably well when played over edited clips from Biden’s plea for unity which he made after becoming the 46th President of the United States.

    “That rock ‘n’roll, eh?” Turner famously said seven years ago. “That rock’n’roll, it just won’t go away.

    “It might hibernate from time to time, and sink back into the swamp. I think the cyclical nature of the universe in which it exists demands it adheres to some of its rules.

    “But it’s always waiting there, just around the corner. Ready to make its way back through the sludge and smash through the glass ceiling, looking better than ever.

    “Yeah, that rock’n’roll, it seems like it’s faded away sometimes, but it will never die. And there’s nothing you can do about it.”

    See the genius new mash-up below.

    A host of US musicians played live yesterday to celebrate Biden’s presidential inauguration. The Tom Hanks-hosted Celebrating America TV special featured performances from Bruce Springsteen and Foo Fighters, while the likes of Katy Perry, Justin Timberlake and John Legend also played live during the show.

    The likes of Jon Bon Jovi, the Black Pumas and Tim McGraw also performed during Celebrating America, while last night also saw the New Radicals reunite for the first time in 22 years to celebrate Biden’s inauguration by playing ‘You Get What You Give’ live. You can catch up on all of the clips from last night’s special programme here.

    Reviewing Biden’s inauguration party, NME wrote: “Celebrating America, hosted by Tom Hanks, presents a smorgasbord of celebs selected, you imagine, to appeal to a broad cross-section of the country and relentless optimism that, in any other year, might feel cringe-worthy, but instead feels like the cork finally being popped on a bottle that’s been shaken vigorously and recklessly for four years.”

  • 87 Rock + Metal Albums That Are Turning 20 This Year

    Wow, 2001 was a long time ago. It was also a heck of a year for rock and metal. Tons of killer albums came out in 2001; we’ve compiled 87 of ’em that rock and metal lovers of all stripes likely enjoyed — and still do! Indeed, it’s almost hard to believe these releases all turn 20 this year.

    Back then, most had to purchase an album physically to enjoy it at home. Legally, at least. Sure, peer-to-peer file-sharing networks were on the rise. But the iTunes Store was still two years away!

    All the same, plenty of efforts by big-name rockers emerged in 2001 — many of them on the same day. Think about the landmark release date of May 15, 2001: That’s when Megadeth’s The World Needs a Hero, Tool’s Lateralus and Weezer’s “Green Album” dropped simultaneously.

    It was also smack dab in the middle of nu-metal’s mainstream popularity. Drowning Pool’s Sinner, Ill Niño’s Revolution Revolución, Mudvayne’s The Beginning of All Things to End, Mushroomhead’s XX, P.O.D.’s Satellite, Saliva’s Every Six Seconds, Sevendust’s Animosity and Staind’s Break the Cycle all came out in 2001. Talk about a banner year for the infamous alt-metal subgenre.

    So relive some rock and metal history with 87 albums celebrating two decades of existence this year. There’s something for everyone. Which of these records did you have on your shelves in 2001?