Only one rock artist who began releasing music this century has records among America's 200 biggest albums of 2022

MGK 2022
(Image credit: Interscope / Bad Boy Records)

Billboard, the journal of note for the US record industry, has published its annual list of the 200 best-selling records of the year in America, and save for rapper-turned pop-punk star Machine Gun Kelly, modern rock artists are conspicuously absent from the list.

Not a single rock album released this century features among the 100 biggest selling albums of 2022 in the US, and only two rock albums released since the dawn of the millennium have broken into this year's Top 200: both - this year's Mainstream Sellout and 2020's Tickets To My Downfall - are the work of Machine Gun Kelly. 

Remove Greatest Hits compilations from the list, and just three rock albums feature among the 100 best-sellers of 2022: Fleetwood Mac's Rumours, released in 1977 (number 30) Nirvana's Nevermind, (number 57), released in 1991, and AC/DC's Back In Black, released in 1980, which was the 84th best-selling album of the year in America.

The best-selling rock compilation of the year is Queen's Greatest Hits, which reached number 31 on the sales list. Greatest Hits sets by Creedence Clearwater Revival (55), Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers (78), Guns N'Roses (81) and Journey (93) also placed in the top 100. 

Billboard also published their 2022 Hot 100 list, listing the 100 biggest-selling songs of the year in the US: not one rock artist features on this list, with teenage pop star Olivia Rodrigo's Paramore-sampling Good 4 U the closest thing the list has to a rock song. 

You can read the Billboard year-end lists on the Billboard site.

Paul Brannigan
Contributing Editor, Louder

A music writer since 1993, formerly Editor of Kerrang! and Planet Rock magazine (RIP), Paul Brannigan is a Contributing Editor to Louder. Having previously written books on Lemmy, Dave Grohl (the Sunday Times best-seller This Is A Call) and Metallica (Birth School Metallica Death, co-authored with Ian Winwood), his Eddie Van Halen biography (Eruption in the UK, Unchained in the US) emerged in 2021. He has written for Rolling Stone, Mojo and Q, hung out with Fugazi at Dischord House, flown on Ozzy Osbourne's private jet, played Angus Young's Gibson SG, and interviewed everyone from Aerosmith and Beastie Boys to Young Gods and ZZ Top. Brannigan lives in North London and supports The Arsenal.