We’re currently counting down the best tracks of the year, as voted for by Classic Rock’s staff and writers. One rule: only one track is featured per artist. Today, we gleefully display numbers 40-31.
40: PiL – Shoom
The climactic highlight of PiL’s exuberant new album What The World Needs Now… is this prowling dub-disco marathon featuring a glorious growly, hilariously foul-mouthed vocal by John Lydon. More filth than fury.
39: Jeff Lynne’s ELO – One Step At A Time
With its driving beat, judicious use of cowbell and keening melody, this was closer to peak-era ELO than we had any right to expect from Lynne’s first album in 14 years.
38: Nightwish – The Greatest Show On Earth
Nightwish’s piece de resistance for 2015, this is a magnificent sprawl across multiple moods that always retains their distinctive symph-metal style. An irresistible cornucopia of soundscapes, and a symphonic masterclass – Richard Dawkins spoken-word appearance included (yes, really).
37: Tame Impala – Let It Happen
The first single from Tame’s third album was eight minutes of blissful psych-disco, mesmeric and melodic, like Daft Punk reborn as a rock band.
36: Scorpions – _We Built This House _
It could have fitted neatly onto any of the classic 80s Scorpions albums. It soars, swoops and has a sublime chorus. It’s masterful pop rock, but delivered with that unmistakable Scorps sting.
35: Radkey – Romance Dawn
Possibly featuring more ‘hey’s than any track since the Ramones’ heyday (ho ho…), this highlight from Dark Black Make Up showed why the Radke brothers were the breakthrough punk band of 2015.
34: Pond – Elvis’ Flaming Star
The song is fun. The video is fun. Hell, even the title is fun. There’s everything to like about this wonderfully offbeat, psychedelic yet furiously catchy piece of pop – stemming from the Tame Impala camp.
33: Israel Nash – Strangers
Beautiful slice of soft, cosmic americana from Nash’s gorgeous sixth album. Laurel Canyon hippy strains merge with psych hints and captivating harmonies to glorious effect.
32: Duff McKagan – How To Be A Man
What does it take to be a man? Dusty, atmospheric Western tones and steely-eyed strumming, if you’re GN’R’s bassist, united with Izzy Stradlin to raise hopes of a GN’R reunion.
31: Keith Richards – Trouble
This stand-out saloon-bar jam from Keef’s third solo album_ Crosseyed Heart_ captures some of the sloppy honky-tonk clatter of primetime Stones, topped off with a gloriously smoke-damaged vocal by the 71-year-old guitar legend.