Best Rock Band of 2013 – 3rd Annual Loudwire Music Awards
With apologies to Sammy Hagar, there is more than one way to rock, and the acts in our Rock Band of 2013 category of the 3rd Annual Loudwire Music Awards prove it.
We've got a veteran grunge favorite, '90s nu-metal pioneers, a stoner-rock favorite, a Grammy-winning rock outfit, three perennial charting rock acts, a darkly theatrical rock act, a swagger-filled experimental collective and a band who just earned their first two No. 1 singles. Check out each of the nominated bands below and our cases for each act as Rock Band of 2013.
It was a huge year for Alice in Chains, who gave fans 'The Devil Put Dinosaurs Here' album. The disc debuted at No. 2 on the Billboard Album Chart and yielded the chart-topping singles 'Hollow' and 'Stone,' as well as the Top 5 single 'Voices.' The group also co-headlined just about every major rock festival of the spring on top of playing their own successful headlining trek and co-headlining the 2013 Uproar Festival.
If absence makes the heart grow fonder, then Alter Bridge's return came just at the right time. After successful side projects for Myles Kennedy and Mark Tremonti carried over to 2013, the band's 'Fortress' album arrived with some built-in momentum. The disc debuted at No. 12 and generated the hit single 'Addicted to Pain. Early touring in the U.K. and Europe added to the disc's worldwide appeal.
Avenged Sevenfold's 'Hail to the King' proved to be one of the year's top albums, debuting at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 Album Chart. The title track also topped the rock charts for several weeks, while 'Shepherd of Fire' was earning some late year love. In addition, Avenged Sevenfold was one of the year's top concert draws, co-headlining festivals and staging their own headlining dates.
The often-experimental Clutch simplified their sound after a year of touring with some classic rock acts and ended up with more straight-ahead rockers and one of 2013's most positively reviewed records, 'Earth Rocker.' The title track and follow-up single 'Crucial Velocity' were both hard-driving singles that played well with audiences during the band's relentless tour schedule.
Five Finger Death Punch may be 2013's most ambitious band, generating a two-disc collection known as 'The Wrong Side of Heaven and the Righteous Side of Hell.' This set featured the singles 'Lift Me Up' and 'Battle Born,' with Rob Halford, Maria Brink and Tech N9ne joining them on songs. They also became one of the most sought after headlining acts, playing the Mayhem Festival and staging their own trek.
Halestorm's 2013 success started with their Grammy for Best Hard Rock / Metal Performance for 'Love Bites (So Do I).' They also fared well on the charts with the hit singles 'Freak Like Me,' 'Here's to Us' and 'Mz. Hyde,' and gave fans a fun covers EP late in the year. They also kept up a heavy tour schedule and Lzzy Hale became rock's go-to lady for collaborations.
In This Moment emerged as one of the great live bands in 2013, and with their 2012 disc 'Blood' they also had some of the best songs of their career. The group kept their momentum going with the singles 'Adrenalize' and 'Whore,' each of which came with memorable videos. A mixture of headlining and support dates featuring major acts helped boost their profile and after 2013 the band should be able to write their own ticket.
The huge news for Korn in 2013 was the return of former guitarist Brian 'Head' Welch. And with his return, the band seemed to be rejuvenated both on record and on stage. 'The Paradigm Shift' received mostly positive reviews and gave fans such new favorites as 'Never Never' and 'Love & Meth.' On the road, the return of "Head" made Korn one of the year's top draws.
Pop Evil have been generating solid music for several years now, but 2013 will be remembered by the band as the year they enjoyed their first chart-topping single -- 'Trenches.' As if that wasn't enough, they're 'Onyx' album follow-up, 'Deal With the Devil,' followed suit and claimed a No. 1 spot as well. Add in a full plate of headline and support shows, and Pop Evil were burning it up in 2013.
A series of high profile guests (Dave Grohl, Elton John, Trent Reznor, Alex Turner, Mark Lanegan, Jake Shears) had fans anticipating Queens of the Stone Age's '… Like Clockwork' before the album arrived, but it actually exceeded expectations. The singles 'My God Is the Sun' and 'I Sat by the Ocean' were just part of an overall album experience and fans responded by sending it straight to No. 1 on the Album Chart. Multiple Grammy nominations concluded their year.