The year is coming to a close, and it’s time to look back on some of the greatest rock and metal songs of 2019. This year brought a mix of veteran bands releasing new material (Ozzy Osbourne, Papa Roach) and new favorites (Dirty Honey, I Prevail). Read on for Audio Ink Radio’s Top 12 Rock and Metal Songs of 2019, and check out the first half of our list here featuring songs released in the early part of the year. Listen to a discussion of the list via the Audio Ink podcast below.
12. Dirty Honey, “When I’m Gone”
Dirty Honey took the rock world by storm in 2019 and scored the first No. 1 rock radio hit from an independent band. That track, “When I’m Gone,” is a nostalgic rock anthem that takes one back to greats such as Guns N’ Roses and Aerosmith.
11. I Prevail, “Hurricane”
Michigan rockers I Prevail have not one by two Grammy nominations for their new album, “Trauma.” The song “Hurricane” off the set is a towering rock anthem with spiraling lyrics, such as, “It hit me like a hurricane / It hit me like a tidal wave / And I don’t know why I drown my mind in everything they say.”
10. Five Finger Death Punch, “Inside Out”
Las Vegas hard rockers Five Finger Death Punch wrapped up the year with news of a new album, “F8,” out in early 2020, and a new single. That new song, “Inside Out,” shows off the heavy side of Five Finger Death Punch, with aggressive riffs and vocals.
9. Ozzy Osbourne, “Under the Graveyard”
Ozzy Osbourne has had a rough year, to say the least. He has been off the touring circuit while he recovers from surgery and illness, but thankfully, he was able to record some great new music while resting from the road. On “Under the Graveyard,” Osbourne offers that familiar “Ozzy” sound, and the track is simply haunting and eerie from start to finish. Zakk Wylde is missed on here, but other than that, it shines.
8. Tom Keifer, “The Death of Me”
Tom Keifer of Cinderella is an incredible musician, and he is consistently putting out solid music. His latest album, “Rise,” features solid rock tracks, and “The Death of Me” is a stand out that’s climbing the mainstream rock radio charts.
7. Puddle of Mudd, “Oh Oh”
Wes Scantlin is back on track and released a new album with Puddle of Mudd in 2019, “Welcome to Galvania.” With Scantlin sober and back making music again, the album’s first single, “Oh Oh,” is a welcomed addition to rock radio this year. The track is classic Puddle of Mudd, with driving guitars and a super catchy hook.
6. Papa Roach, “Come Around”
Jacoby Shaddix and the guys of Papa Roach are ruling 2019 with tracks off their new album, this year’s “Who Do You Trust?” Their latest single, “Come Around,” is straight-up Papa Roach, with an in-your-face attitude and fun, hard rock vibe.
5. Killswitch Enagage, “I Am Broken Too”
Killswitch Engage have one of the best metal albums of the year in “Atonement,” and the song “I Am Broken Too” is special because it shows a vulnerability that few metal bands can communicate. It’s a heavy song but has a melodic, beautiful chorus that makes it one of the best songs of the year.
4. Saint Asonia featuring Sully Era, “The Hunted”
Saint Asonia released their latest studio album this year, “Flawed Design,” and out of the gate, the guys scored a chart-topping rock hit in “The Hunted,” which features Sully Erna from Godsmack. The song features raging riffs and Adam Gontier’s powerful, triumphant vocals. It should be noted that Godsmack’s “Under Your Scars” was a huge hit this year, but it came out in spring 2018, so the song didn’t qualify time-wise for this list.
3. Theory of a Deadman, “History of Violence”
Theory of a Deadman is back with a new album, “Say Nothing,” out in early 2020. The first single off the set, “The History of Violence,” follows the story of a girl trapped in an abusive relationship. It’s a serious topic, and the guys do a great job tackling this very real issue.
2. Alter Bridge, “Indoctrination”
One of the most unique songs on the latest album from Alter Bridge, “Walk the Sky,” is the mighty “Indoctrination.” The song has a deep, slugging groove throughout, which gives it a different feel for Alter Bridge but still remains that Alter Bridge character. It’s a stand out and another example of how they soar. (Note: Alter Bridge’s “Wouldn’t You Rather” was one of Audio Ink’s top 10 songs from the first half of 2019.)
1. Tool, “Fear Inoculum”
This year was a landmark one for Tool fans, as the band finally released their long-awaited new album, “Fear Inoculum.” The title track off the set is an opus. It’s riveting, classic Tool, with complex instrumentals, doom-y textures and Maynard James Keenan’s gripping vocals.