Best Ten Hard Rock/Nu Metal Songs of 2009

A lot of hard rock bands had singles on the charts in 2009. Which ten were the best?

2009 saw the release of lots of good new hard rock/nu metal songs. It also saw the return of several veteran rockers with singles such as Metallica’s “Broken, Beat & Scarred” (off their Death Magnetic CD), AC/DC’s “Anything Goes” (from Black Ice), and Creed’s “Overcome” (from their CD Full Circle).

Here’s a list of ten of the best.

10. “Hard to See” — Five Finger Death Punch

Off Five Finger Death Punch’s 2009 CD War is the Answer, the band proves that it’s here to stay. “Hard to See” incorporates a catchy melody that, while reminiscent of their debut album The Way of the Fist, sounds different from their earlier singles. Not surprisingly, “Hard to See,” according to Wikipedia, is the band’s most successful single thus far.

9. “So Long, Good-bye” — 10 Years

From their CD Division, this song is mellow and haunting. With lyrics like “The rivers from your eyes can’t change my mind,” this song is hard to ignore.

8. “Wars” — HURT

This song, like “So Long, Good-bye,” is also mellow but sounds in many ways like classic HURT. “Wars,” off the CD Goodbye to the Machine, has an insistent beat and great vocals. HURT’s sound has matured with every album, and “Wars” was a perfect song to release as the CD’s first single.

7. “Burn It to the Ground” — Nickelback

Dark Horse, Canadian band Nickelback’s sixth CD, had several singles released in 2009, but “Burn It to the Ground” is classic Nickelback. Some might argue that “Something in Your Mouth” is a catchier tune, but others might claim that it is also sexist. “Burn It to the Ground,” though, is a fun song with memorable rhymes. Once it gets stuck in a listener’s head, it’s hard to get out.

6. “37 Stitches” — Drowning Pool

Even though the hard and heavy version of “37 Stitches,” off Drowning Pool’s Full Circle CD, has been heard on the radio since 2008, 2009 saw the release of the band’s album Loudest Common Denominator, which featured the acoustic version of this song. Thanks to the airplay of the acoustic version, the plugged-in version got more play as well. Both versions are great; like HURT, Drowning Pool’s newer songs show a growing maturity and more diverse sounds.

5. “Check My Brain” — Alice in Chains

Fans may have had their doubts about the band since the death of Layne Staley, but “Check My Brain,” off the band’s CD Black Gives Way to Blue, is classic Alice in Chains, certainly thanks to Jerry Cantrell. William DuVall, while not Staley, is a decent addition to the band, and makes fans glad the band is back, evidenced by the single’s number one position on Billboard’s Rock Chart.

4. “Sound of Madness” — Shinedown

This song off Shinedown’s third album titled The Sound of Madness had lots of airplay in 2009, and the lyrics are unforgettable. It’s a fun song. Like other bands on this list, “Sound of Madness” is a testament to the fact that Shinedown will be around for a while.

3. “Sulfur” — Slipknot

Veterans Slipknot got lots of airplay off the CD All Hope is Gone. “Sulfur” is classic Slipknot, reminiscent of songs off Vol. 3: The Subliminal Verses, but “Sulfur” blends well with the other songs on All Hope is Gone. The CD has a wide range of songs from slow to hard and heavy; “Sulfur” is somewhere in the middle.

2. “The Night” — Disturbed

The fourth release off Disturbed’s CD Indestructible showcases one of the great things about the band. They easily and beautifully intermingle hard, heavy sounds with haunting melodies. David Draiman’s vocals against Dan Donegan’s heavy guitar are an Indestructible match.

1. “Whiskey Hangover” — Godsmack

Godsmack’s fans have waited patiently for new songs. The new song, released only as a single, served to get fans excited for Sully and company’s new album due out in 2010. The song is number one on this list because it’s reminiscent of older Godsmack (with a rhythm like “Moon Baby”) but also similar to newer songs (like “The Enemy” from IV). Their newest song is definitely Godsmack, and it’s hard not to sing along to this catchy, fun tune when it plays on the radio; who can resist the count from “one sip” up to “six, seven, eight”?

Yes, 2009 had lots of other great hard rock singles from bands like Linkin Park, Three Days Grace, and Marilyn Manson, as well as others, but the ten here were memorable releases for the bands that created them. These songs will continue to sound great years from now.

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