Not every band that starts jamming in their garage is really looking to reinvent the wheel whenever they step up to the plate. Rock and roll is all about having no rules, and sometimes it’s enough to just make some of the loudest rock music you can regardless of what anybody thinks about you. Sometimes artists get their identity down to a science though, and they wind up with an entirely new genre laying at their feet.
While they might not have planned on making rock history by any stretch, every one of these bands became the blueprint for what the new form of rock and roll was going to be like, whether it was the way they liked to dress or the style that they played the music. Every one of these artists’ styles tended to rub off on their counterparts, either going in a similar direction or trying to twist things in a different direction because they didn’t like what they did.
No matter how you want to look at it though, these records tended to have a certain impact that no other band did around that time, still making you nod your head and sing along even if the sound was a bit more gnarly than what you were expecting. Even if the bands in question were a bit uncomfortable with their legacy in rock history, it wasn’t really in their hands anymore. Rock and roll is meant to be unpredictable, and if you’ve launched an entire new genre, you’re going to have to stand up for what you believe in.
10. Black Monk Time - The Monks
In the early ‘60s, there seemed to be only one type of rock and roll. Even though the British Invasion gave us the Beatles and the Stones trying their own hand at rock and roll, the common vocabulary of Chuck Berry and Buddy Holly was the only connective tissue that made rock and roll what it was. Half a world away though, the Monks had something a bit nastier in mind.
Formed when each of the members were in the Army overseas, Black Monk Time is the only album the band made, taking the sounds of traditional rock and roll and giving it a healthy dose of attitude. Even though most of this album was misunderstood in its time, the Monks were on the cusp of what would become garage rock, making songs that were much more indebted to improvisation and leaving in some of the chaotic moments to give the songs more momentum.
The results wouldn’t really be felt until years later, when bands out of Detroit like the MC5 and The Stooges started making their own wild stabs at what rock and roll could be. Rock and roll already had a reputation as a fairly nasty genre, but this was just the beginning of how filthy it could get.