Many bands left their mark with music in 2016, but how many completed their vision with equally as interesting videos? The visual medium can add an extra layer of understanding and appreciation for the song and with our 10 Best Rock Videos of 2016, we're celebrating some of the best offerings.
Bands like A Day to Remember, Shinedown, Sum 41 and Puscifer went the more humorous route with their clips. Five Finger Death Punch offered something truly personal for their entry. Disturbed, Avatar, John 5 and The Temperance Movement get points for delivering more artistic visions and Beartooth deliver a surprising narrative that made us stand up and pay attention.
Get a look at our picks for the 10 Best Rock Videos of 2016 in the countdown below.
"White Bear"The Temperance Movement
Not only is "White Bear" a great track from The Temperance Movement, but the band delivered an eye-catching video for the song as well. Director Steven Sebring manipulates time and light with some interesting camera techniques that capture the beauty in movement of a band fully engrossed in their performance.
Avatar have always delivered a visual presence with their music and that carried over this year with the geometric wonder that is their "For the Swarm" video. The aggressive rocker is accompanied by a visual assault as the band members appear on colorful cubes the fall into formations mirroring the sound of the music. This Johan Carlen-directed clip introduced fans to the band's new album and definitely left its mark.
Beware! There's danger ahead in Beartooth's "Aggressive" video. The clip is delivered from the viewer's point of view, taking you on a frantic journey that includes the packing of several sharp instruments, rummaging through random drugs, spray painting property, attacks on others, tossing a molotov cocktail and more destructive behavior. But the big reveal is ultimately what sells the clip and makes you question what you just saw. Thumbs up for excellent use of storytelling in this one.
Maynard James Keenan has shown a wicked sense of humor and a fascination with pugilism, so we get a bit of both in the Puscifer video for "The Arsonist." The animated clip envisions Keenan as an MMA fighter first squaring off against Ronda Rousey, then joining her and fellow fighters Cat Zingarno, Holly Holm and Cristiane "Cyborg" Justino as they take down the Trumpzilla that threatens the town. It's a bit of biting commentary right in the midst of election season that definitely landed its punch.
"Fake My Own Death"Sum 41
So ... much ... pop ... culture! Can Sum 41 escape it? Can anyone? The band has a little fun with the overabundance of trending topics that appear to be chasing down the band's members in their "Fake My Own Death" video. Will they escape Kim Kardashian's "break the Internet" photo, Angry Birds, Bill Cosby or other destructive forces? Watch and see how many familiar items you can pick out.
"Making Monsters"John 5 and the Creatures
John 5 and the Creatures encounter some real creatures in their video for "Making Monsters." Directors Matt Zane and Johnny Coffin help John 5 with the video, which features a young boy working on some models of creatures, leaving them in his work space and having them suddenly come to life at night. Watch as a mini-John 5 rocks in a "monster" band with the Creature from the Black Lagoon and Frankenstein.
In one of the funnier videos of the year, Shinedown does not hold back in skewering not only themselves but also the music industry as a whole in their "Asking for It" video. The band recruited child actors to play themselves, while the real Shinedown members appear as video crew members. The clip really takes jabs at the band's image and picks apart some of the the thinking in the industry. Overall, it's a fun clip that's well executed by the band and director Darren Doane.
"Naivety"A Day to Remember
And we've got Darren Doane's work back-to-back with the director helping A Day to Remember with another humorous clip, "Naivety." The clip centers on the supposed reunion of A Day to Remember, but it comes when each of the members are well into old age. The guys have their fair share of issues, like fighting over Depends and struggling to load gear, not to mention dosing off while driving the van to gigs. But get them onstage, and they can still put on a show like no other.
"The Sound of Silence"Disturbed
Disturbed's "The Sound of Silence" cover was already powerful, but thanks to director Matt Mahurin, it got an equally impressive visual representation. The director uses black and white, light and darkness and shadows all to great effect. And if you were unsure of how much David Draiman connected to the lyric, all you need to do is watch the closeups on the singer's expressive face as he sings.
"I Apologize"Five Finger Death Punch
Five Finger Death Punch typically make some sort of mark with their videos, but they may have delivered their most personal clip to date with "I Apologize." Singer Ivan Moody's battle with addiction issues have come to light over the past year, and the somber clip for the track addresses that head on. Moody is seen walking through a graveyard with a shovel, passing by a number of familiar names on gravesites -- Joplin, Hendrix, Weiland, Staley, Cobain, Bonham, Morrison and more. Eventually he comes to his own headstone with a born date but no end. As he sits atop a freshly dug grave, he ponders his fate and in the process invites us in to his world. Nathan Cox directed the affecting video, one that moved us while bringing attention to those dealing with various forms of addiction. For the artistic expression and honesty, we salute Five Finger Death Punch's "I Apologize" as our Rock Video of the Year.