Rock albums don't typically carry that much cultural significance. Being primarily a form of entertainment, these albums often emerge as something you can bang your head to before the next great record comes along. But every now and again, a record comes to the forefront that stops the clock.
What makes these albums important though? Well...there's no real set formula. Upon first glance, not many of these records go together under a single coherent theme other than being on the heavier side of the rock spectrum. However, each of these albums reflected a different shift in the musical landscape. Whether it was from the equipment being used or the radical change in style at play, these records were shocking in the best possible way when they were first released.
Even if these albums had great music inside of them, it's the audience who makes these records feel truly important. As time goes on, these records go from being the albums of the year to a major part of the rock vocabulary that'll inspire millions of potential rock stars to pick up instruments of their own. These records may not sound the same, but they have left an equally indelible mark on the genre as a whole.
20. Whatever People Say That I Am - Arctic Monkeys
With bands like the Strokes and the White Stripes rising to prominence, rock and roll was going in a bit of a different direction during the 2000's. Instead of making songs that made you sound like royal overlords, young bands were taking all their pent up energy back to the garage. Plenty of these acts could have made this list, but the debut record from the Arctic Monkeys showed us how rock could adapt with the times.
Long before they took over the rock landscape, Alex Turner and co. were a few humble rockers making the rounds about England, but everything changed once their songs started getting shared online. Within a relatively short time frame, these guys went from a decent bar band to one of the biggest names in rock, with songs like "I Bet You Look Good On the Dancefloor" sending them up the charts.
Having quality songs didn't hurt either, with every single track on the record depicting what life was like clubbing in modern England. As opposed to the other revivalist acts of the time, Arctic Monkeys had one foot planted in the past and another in the future. Just when it seemed like the well of rock music had run dry, this record came out of nowhere and brought the genre screaming back to life.