The 35 Best Rock Songs of 2017GuitarSpotting
35 Best Rock Songs – 2017
It’s hard to believe, but yet another year has come and gone. And so it’s time to count down The Best Rock Songs of 2017.
This year’s crop is an eclectic mix of new rock and roll sounds and styles, not overly top heavy but deep in quality. The list includes hard rock, metal, pop, psychedelic, progressive, indie, punk, blues, country, and of course, heaps of loud guitars!
There’s some great stuff here. So look at your speakers, and crank that little volume knob hard right. It’s time to rock.
The Majesty of Rock
Just like last year’s list of the 35 Best Rock Songs of 2016, I had originally intended to make a Top 25 list this time around. But with 79 songs making the final cut, I decided to stick to a Top 35 format once again. That seems to be the sweet spot where every song deserves to make the list. It just feels right.
Rock and roll ain’t dead yet, and this year’s song list is chock full of cool sounds, lyrics and videos, great guitar playing, and a whole lotta rock and roll swagger.
Songs are listed like this:
Artist – Song Name (Album Title)
The rules of the list are simple: No more than one track per artist, album must be released in 2017, song must hold up to repeat listens. Now let’s stop talking and start rocking!
Oh, there is one rule, for you:
The Best Rock Songs of 2017
Honorable Mention: Blackfield – From 44 to 48; Alice Cooper – Paranoiac Personality; Art Nation – Ghost Town; Wesley Fuller – #1 Song; Nothing More – Go To War
35. Chris Cornell – The Promise (Single)
“When I feel like lies are all I hear.
I pull my memories near.
The one thing they can’t take.”
‘The Promise’ was originally written for a movie soundtrack (The Promise), and released as a single in March 2017. It was a bit of a departure for Chris Cornell, mellower than his work in Soundgarden and Audioslave and featuring lush orchestration. Sadly, it was the last solo release before his death in May.
Written about the genocide in Armenia during the Ottoman Empire, the song was deeply personal for Cornell, whose wife’s grandparents were affected by this crisis.
He delivers a great vocal performance here, a sad reminder of his talent and ability.
34. Goodbye June – Oh No (Magic Valley)
“I bet you thought you were the love of my life, oh no.
I bet you thought that I would lay down and die, oh no.”
Goodbye June is a Tennessee rock band who released their debut full-length album Magic Valley in May 2017.
Lead vocalist Landon Milbourn stomps and howls his way through the track ‘Oh No’ over blistering guitars and a rocking backbeat.
A hard driving blues-inspired rocker.
33. Royal Thunder – The Sinking Chair (Wick)
“It’s not over. You still have time.
Said the voice of reason.”
Georgia’s own Royal Thunder released their 3rd album Wick in April.
‘The Sinking Chair’ is a screaming rocker with some fine guitar work throughout (check out the guitar solo).
But the track gets its sense of urgency from Mlny Parsonz’ high-octane vocals, which take the song to a whole other level.
32. Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes – Vampires (Modern Ruin)
“I’m sick of being hidden in the darkness.
That all these vampires adore.”
English punk rockers Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes released their 2nd album Modern Ruin in January 2017.
‘Vampires’ is a catchy rocker with a punk vibe, dark lyrics and engaging chorus.
TLDR: Doesn’t suck.
31. Louise Distras – Outside of You (Single)
“Forgive and forget, pain and regret.
Why do you feel this way?”
English indie rocker Louise Distras checks in at #31. ‘Outside of You’ was released as a single in the summer, as she continues to work on a full-length album.
It’s good stuff, a fast rocker with a punk edge and killer chorus.
30. X Ambassadors – Hoping (Single)
“Keep on hoping (keep on hoping).
When it all feels broken.
Got to keep my hope alive.”
New York indie-alternative rock band X Ambassadors released several singles in 2017, including the powerful ‘Hoping’.
The song is about keeping hope alive in a time of cynicism and fear.
It’s an interesting song with elements of electronica, gospel, and alternative rock, led by lead singer Sam Harris’ soulful vocals.
TLDR: Soul pop.
29. Nothing But Thieves – Amsterdam (Broken Machine)
“So I hit my head up against the wall.
Over and over and over and over again, and again.”
Nothing But Thieves are an English alternative band, and their 2nd album Broken Machine shows off a wide range of influences.
‘Amsterdam’ is a driving rocker featuring a strong rhythm section, howling vocals and a smashing chorus.