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The Rock Sound Top 50 Releases Of The Year: 50 - 41

Rob Sayce
Rob Sayce 29 December 2017 at 17.00

Here's part one of our huge rundown...

After another incredible 12 months in music, we've rounded up the best, brightest and most life-changing records of 2017.

The full list appears in our current issue, the Rock Sound Awards powered by EMP!

Here's part one..

50. DANNY WORSNOP 
‘THE LONG ROAD HOME’
(EARACHE)
Of all the amazing things about the Asking Alexandria frontman’s whiskey-soaked, dirt-raw country album, the sheer heart and hurt running through songs like ‘Prozac’ and ‘High’ left the deepest impression. But with kind-of ludicrous, hugely entertaining bangers like ‘Mexico’ and the brilliantly-named ‘Don’t Overdrink It’ along for the ride, his debut solo release was one of the most irreverent listens of 2017 too. We’ll tip our cowboy hats to that. 



49. MALLORY KNOX
‘WIRED’
(RCA)

Entering the year, Mallory Knox hoped to release the album that would finally put them out front with British rock’s big guns. And ‘Wired’ did bear some of their finest work to date, with frontman Mikey Chapman on fighting form. From the deeply personal ‘For You’ to the emotionally intense ‘Falling In Love’, it suggested that when they’re let off the leash, they’re still a considerable force to be reckoned with.



48. NOTHING,NOWHERE.
‘REAPER’
(DCD2 / EQUAL VISION)

With a unique, haunting vision and nine songs that cut to the heart of the human experience, nothing,nowhere. (AKA Vermont’s Joe Mulherin) threatened to change the alternative music game with this debut album. From the hip-hop-meets-emo genius of ‘Houdini’ and ‘Hopes Up’ – the latter featuring Dashboard Confessional’s Chris Carrabba – right through to the melancholy climax of ‘Nevermore’, it was equal parts raw, confessional and completely groundbreaking. This signalled the start of something incredible.

 

47. THY ART IS MURDER
‘DEAR DESOLATION’
(NUCLEAR BLAST)

"We will take over the game and raise the bar so no one will touch it or us,” claimed an emotional and defiant CJ McMahon, as the vocalist announced his reunion with Thy Art Is Murder earlier in 2017. And boy, what a return it proved to be. ‘Dear Desolation’ raised that bar and then some, resulting in the Aussie deathcore gang’s most brutal, cohesive and annihilating album to date. Do call it a comeback.

46. NEW FOUND GLORY 
‘MAKES ME SICK’
(HOPELESS)

Some 20 years and nine albums into their careers, New Found Glory still have the ability to surprise us. Dipping their toes into more tropical and experimental waters than ever before – without losing any of their trademark pop-punk charm – they proved that, not only can you most definitely teach old dogs new tricks, but that they’re still among the undisputed kings of the genre.

45. SLEEPING WITH SIRENS 
‘GOSSIP’
(WARNER BROS.)

In a year of reinventions, Sleeping With Sirens took perhaps the boldest plunge. Tearing up the sound they’ve spent years honing and rising from its ashes, ‘Gossip’ introduced a sleeker, smoother and more radio-friendly Sirens. It was a huge risk and the scope was tangible – lead single ‘Legends’ was even appointed the theme song for the U.S. Winter Olympic team. But, most importantly of all, the outcome has been a whole new world of new possibilities.

 

44. AUGUST BURNS RED
‘PHANTOM ANTHEM’
(FEARLESS)

Even with their 15th birthday looming on the horizon, the metalcore veterans proved that they’re still among the best in the game. Though there were plenty of crushing breakdowns and labyrinthine slabs of guitar on ‘Invisible Enemy’, it was punctuated by moments of melodic elegance too. August Burns Red went hard on album eight, making for an intense ride – and a victorious one, too.

 

43. CIRCA SURVIVE 
‘THE AMULET’
(HOPELESS)

Circa Survive returned to our stereos with another colourfully progressive opus, and though ‘The Amulet’ didn’t quite match the raucous and uninhibited sound of the Philly five-piece’s previous work, it perfectly captured the emotion of its life and death themes. From the mind-bending melodies of ‘Lustration’ to the hypnotising rhythms of ‘Tunnel Vision’, it was taken up another notch by  Anthony Green’s otherworldly pipes.  Captivating stuff.

 

42. CHASE ATLANTIC  
‘CHASE ATLANTIC’
(WARNER BROS.)

Proving they’re not just ones to watch in the future, but also very much a band people need to sit up and pay attention to right now, trap-rock-pop trio Chase Atlantic built on their solid armoury of EPs with this debut album, combining the best of them. The simmering, soulful ‘Cassie’ in particular provided yet another new blueprint for what rock is ‘allowed’ to be in 2017 and beyond.

 

41. YOU ME AT SIX 
‘NIGHT PEOPLE’
(BMG)

It must be pretty difficult to keep things fresh when you’re over a decade into your career, but with ‘Night People’, You Me At Six showed that they are far from running out of steam. Combining huge choruses with sweeping melodies, this was proof that you don’t always need loads of bells and whistles to write an album. Sometimes all it takes is good, honest songwriting.   

  

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