Is There A Thing Such As “Modern” Classic Rock?

Is There A Thing Such As “Modern” Classic Rock? | I Love Classic Rock Videos

Highly Suspect vocalist and lead guitarist in the annual Carolina Rebellion Music Festival - Kevin RC Wilson

Rock and roll and its variations has had its run. Admit it or not, the recent decade or two has ushered the influx of hip-hop/rap and pop music. The new kings have arrived, and opinions are divided. Good for those who have flexible enough tastes to adapt to new styles, but purists have something else in mind. While some artists come up with hits that are sure enough to stir interest in the general public, there is some truth to the creative effort behind this music. Using catchy chords and progressions but simplifying them down to rudiments, one can infer the relative ease in composing such hits. This is why four-chord progressions are easily transposable from song to song, with only the lyrical melodies varied. But is classic rock dead?

Far from it, actually. Rock music is very much alive, and has gone underground, with today’s prevalent genres dominating the charts. Here are some of the most underrated bands who are keeping the craft alive, and slaying altogether. Take a gander and listen to these revitalized and energized tracks that are sure to take you back to rock’s glory days.

1. Highly Suspect

Hailing from Massachusetts, this band started from humble beginnings. Twins Rich and Ryan Meyer formed the band with their best friend Johnny Stevens, and initially played as a bar cover band. With influence like Pink Floyd and Hendrix, you know you’re on the right track. Highly Suspect’s tracks also incorporates blues and hard rock elements, with a lovely grit to it. Vocalist Johnny Steven’s technique has some similarities with the iconic Chris Cornell as well, his syllable enunciation to be exact. Didn’t get nominated for Grammy’s for nothing. Definitely one of the top bands in “modern” classic rock.

2. Royal Blood

English rock duo from England, Royal Blood has got some tricks up their sleeves. Mike Kerr, who plays the bass and vocals, uses several effect pedals to make his bass sound like a standard lead guitar. Surprisingly, the technique sounds good in execution, allowing for heavy basslines in conjunction with lead riffs. Drummer Ben Thatcher drives the tempo with a mix of rock and roll, grunge, and hard rock influences. Don’t forget the cowbell. The vocal harmonies are tight as hell too, that upper range serving well with the band’s bass-driven melodies.

3. Kaleo

Representing Iceland is diverse sub-genre rock band Kaleo. The band is known to take on even psychedelic rock, reminiscent of Pink Floyd’s influence, but they seriously sound good with blues rock. Preserving the Chuck Berry impact on the band, their music brings back the good ole’ sixties and seventies, also incorporating some of Led Zeppelin’s modified blues and call-and-response dynamics into the mix. Loud and generously echoed guitar riffs are sure to make the crowd foot-stomping in no time.

4. Red Sun Rising

Fast forward to the 90’s, the world saw the rise of punk and grunge rock. This newer, faster-paced sub genre caught the attention of the youth of the era, with melodies now heavily utilizing the rhythm guitar to drive the songs. Red Sun Rising brings back the energetic feeling of punk and grunge with their playing styles. The vocal’s rich quality provides a strange contrast to the music, but surprisingly melds together beautifully especially in harmonies. This brooding style is reminiscent of Deftones, Alice in Chains, and Linkin Park.

5. Dorothy

Another homage to the dirt-crusted blues rock sound, Dorothy is another band that continues to propagate the genre in the modern setting. Frontwoman Dorothy Martin has been likened to her influences such as Patti Smith, Grace Slick,  and The White Stripes. The band is known for generously distorted guitar riffs with a more muddy quality than usual. This produces a grittier, raspy quality known from works of Cream and Led Zeppelin. This earthy blues rock, paired with female vocals, is a welcome addition to the family of contrasting yet compatible.

Classic rock on! What other bands do you think should be in this list? Let us know in the comments!