Rock has come a long way from just being the songs that got people pumped back in the '50s. Towards the end of the Summer of Love, rock and roll started to slowly shift into something a lot more gritty and dangerous than anyone had thought of before. Even though the party kept going, there was something a lot more serious going on underneath the surface.
Across every stripe of rock music, you could find a lot more vicious side of things going on as well, with songs that had a lot more dirt under their boots than your standard Boston or REO Speedwagon record. Whether it was hooking up a handful of distortion pedals or singing about some of the most intense things imaginable, these are the albums that you went to when you were looking for something beyond the AM radio rock you were finding on oldies stations.
As much as this could have been a turn off, these are the albums that proved rock could grow up past its party band roots and make people bang their heads for days on end. The safe side of rock may give you some more pop success, but once you reach the dark side...that's where the real fun starts happening.
10. Songs for the Deaf - Queens of the Stone Age
The idea of hard rock started to become a bit of a caricature during the early '00s. Though there were the veins of nu metal and even a few garage rock bands making waves at the time, you could tell that some of them were wearing these retro sounds more like a costume than actually having the passion for it. Just when things started to feel a bit stale, Josh Homme kicked off an album that sent us on a trip through the desert.
Though Songs for the Deaf may be a little much for your average rock fan to take in all at once, this is one of the most airtight bunch of songs to come out of the '00s. As loud as it seems on first listen, there's a lot of variety at every turn, with Homme wearing his gnarlier influences on his sleeve for tracks like First It Giveth and You Think I Ain't Worth a Dollar.
At the same time, you have songs like The Sky is Fallin and Go With the Flow that almost sound like something the Beatles would do if they were pissed off and high off their ass on some bad acid. Given the fact that most rock at the time was about the aesthetic, it's always nice to find the stuff with a little more dirt under its feet.