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Awesome Music: Hard Rock
Hard Rock
  • Hard Rock itself has a massive pile of this. Bon Jovi's "Living on a Prayer", "Blaze of Glory", and "Wanted Dead or Alive", Living Colour's incredible "Cult of Personality", Deep Purple's "Highway Star" and "Smoke on the Water", AC/DC's "Highway to Hell" and "Back in Black".
  • On the same note as AC/DC, "Thunderstruck" always gets the blood pumping! The electrifying opening riff, the powerful guitars, the thundering drums, Brian's epic vocals... WOW.
  • Deep Purple also have...
  • "Lift U Up" by Swiss band Gotthard, especially the intro and that little guitar...bit at about 1 minute 25 seconds.
  • Quite possibly the undisputed masters of this trope, the original Guns 'N Roses. Between "November Rain", "Estranged", their ultimate rile-the-crowd song (admittedly taken from Bob Dylan), "Knockin' on Heaven's Door", and their classic "pure, innocent love" song "Sweet Child O' Mine" (with an amazing solo), they have more undisputably awesome songs than any other band. And of course, who can forget "Paradise City", which was deservedly their constant closer.
    • The first four original Guns N' Roses albums (Appetite for Destruction, Lies, Use Your Illusion I&II). Notable moments: The second riff in "My Michelle", the last two minutes of "Rocket Queen", all of "Mr. Brownstone", all of "One in a Million" - but mostly the parts that offend people. In UYI I&II, you have: "Don't Cry", "Coma", "Locomotive", "Bad Apples", and "You Could Be Mine".
    • "Shackler's Revenge". The chorus fills whoever listens to it with awesome.
    • A lot of Chinese Democracy is more awesome than most people give it credit for. Especially the title track, "Chinese Democracy", once you get past that weird 40-second intro and hit the main-riff. Then once the other guitars, bass, drums and vocals kick in, the song just goes from awesome to nearly epic.
    • "Welcome to the Jungle".
  • "Eye of the Tiger" makes any Training Montage infinitely more awesome!
  • Queen:
    • "Show Must Go On".
      • Reality Subtext just makes this one jaw-dropping. Freddie was practically on his deathbed and couldn't even stand without assistance. Brian May wanted to take a pass on the song as a result. Freddie said, "I'll fucking do it, darling," slammed some vodka, and belted it out in one take.
      • And then the Links did it!
    • And "Princes of the Universe", A.K.A. the theme to Highlander.
    • Also the theme to Exalted.
    • When you perform at Live Aid and own the whole show with a song entitled "Radio Ga-Ga", you are pretty much the physical incarnation of this Trope. Queen's 20 minute set at Live Aid was voted the greatest rock performance ever by a bunch of critics. If you haven't already seen it, you're missing out. Here's the whole thing.
    • "I Want It All". In addition to the awesomely defiant lyrics (helped in no small part by Freddie Mercury's voice), it also features what may the most awesome shredding of Brian May's career.
    • "Don't Stop Me Now" was already an awesome Queen song, but this Automatic Mario tribute is in a high enough Made of Win tier that is almost impossible to define. There are four distinct levels that are synced up to each member of the band.
    • And of course, "Bohemian Rhapsody".
    • In the lap of the Gods, the direct prelude to "Bohemian Rhapsody".
    • "The Prophet's Song" surely counts.
    • "The Hero", and its progenitor "Battle Theme" to a lesser extent, are some of the most epic Queen songs ever. Possibly even more epic than "Flash Gordon"?
    • "Hammer To Fall".
    • "Stone Cold Crazy".
    • "Brighton Rock". If there was ever a track that proved that Queen was more than what Classic Rock radio showed, this was it, with the band plowing down the road at 125 mph with Freddie delivering an insane vocal performance at the beginning and end of the track.
    • "We Are The Champions", the victory song by excellence.
    • That and "We Will Rock You" have been classic sports rally songs ever since their debut.
    • "Innuendo", anyone?
    • "Ride the Wild Wind" is one amazingly kickass driving song.
    • "Headlong" is another song that's totally kickass.
  • Led Zeppelin have put out several; "Kashmir", "Immigrant Song", "Black Dog", "The Song Remains the Same", but especially "Stairway to Heaven", which is not only their most famous song, but according to a Guitar World poll, it has the greatest guitar solo of all time.
    • "Immigrant Song" is used repeatedly by Michael O'Neil in the Posleen War Series to send his Mobile Infantry into battle.
    • "Dazed And Confused", where Jimmy Page plays the guitar with a freakin' violin bow! In the movie The Song Remains the Same, they play a 30+ minutes version of "Dazed and Confused".
    • The last couple of minutes of "The Ocean".
    • "The Rain Song"? Heck, Houses of the Holy was an awesome album in its entirety.
    • For "Over the Hills and Far Away", it's a toss-up between the intensely beautiful acoustic guitar intro and the part when it abruptly transitions into headbanging hard rock (but is still tempered by the acoustic guitar throughout the song).
    • Achilles "Last Stand".
  • Wishbone Ash played "Warrior" in 1973. It doesn't start like much, but the end chorus/refrain is this trope, distilled and bottled: "I had to be a warrior / A slave I could not be / A soldier and a conqueror / Fighting to be free"... It also doubles as an Ear Worm.
  • Then there's arena rock, a subset of hard rock. Out of the arena bands, Boston stands out, with its rousing "More Than a Feeling" and its incredibly epic "Foreplay/Long Time" double song.
  • "The Final Countdown" by Europe.
  • Butthole Surfers' "Pepper" will forever be Crowning Music of Awesome fodder.
  • Rev Theory's "Hell Yeah" really gets your blood pumping, because who can say no to shouting "Hell yeah!" at the top of their lungs?
  • Almost anything composed by Jim Steinman, but his true Crowning Music of Awesome would have to be Meat Loaf's Bat Out Of Hell album, especially the title track. Subsequent awesome tracks include music from 80s movie Streets of Fire ("Nowhere Fast", "Tonight Is What It Means To Be Young"), and the fantastically over the top ballad "Total Eclipse of the Heart" by Bonnie Tyler.
    • "Seize the Night".
    • Both "I'd Do Anything For Love (But I Won't Do That)" and "It's All Coming Back To Me Now" (which not even Celine Dion can ruin), for their dramatic, bombastic nature.
  • Jimi Hendrix's "Machine Gun" from Band of Gypsys. The most incredible thing to ever have been done on an electric guitar.
    • Or "Voodoo Chile" (not the wah-wah one). A 15-minute jam that never once feels boring, together with some of the best musicians ever guesting on the track.
    • Pretty much every time this man picked up a guitar resulted in a CMoA. Behold his amazing cover of Chuck Berry's "Johnny B. Goode", in which he plays part of the solo with his teeth.
  • Aerosmith's cover of "Train Kept A-Rollin'". Each and every one of the FIVE solos could count as a CMOA in and of themselves.
    • "Sweet Emotion" and "Lightning Strikes" stiffen up the sinews, and summon up the blood.
    • MAMA. FREAKING. KIN.
  • Anything by Kiss especially "I Was Made For Loving You".
    • "God Gave Rock And Roll To You" is totally excellent.
    • "Rock And Roll All Night"! It's practically their signature song and oh, so awesome.
    • "Love Gun" is their best makeup-era song, period. That opening riff sounds like a big ol' fucking machine gun going off!
    • OOOOOH OOOOH BLACK DIAMOND.
    • And the songs from their post-makeup days, which got closer to metal (or at least to hair metal). "All Hell's Breakin' Loose", "Into the Fire", "Heaven's on Fire", "Tears Are Fallin'", etc. (Too bad those MTV music videos generally sucked ass.)
  • Queens of the Stone Age's Songs for the Deaf was a pretty darn hard rock album, but at the end of it all, the "hidden" track "Mosquito Song" comes on. The perfect, beautiful, and very dark setup to their next album, Lullabies to Paralyze.
  • For years, the band, Foreigner had numerous hit songs that fell just short of #1 on the Billboard Pop chart like "Waiting For a Girl like You". In 1985, they finally created the song that put them on top, "I Want To Know What Love Is", a magnificent power ballad complete with a choir accompaniment.
  • Eddie Van Halen more or less invented finger-tapping. Fueled the whole hard rock genre for the 80's. The guitar solo track Eruption was in its time regarded as the best piece of guitar playing, ever.
    • "I'm the One" in particular has a godlike solo. It took finger-tapping to its apex - and then every other rock band had to come along and copy the technique, which steered it into Narm territory.
    • Eddie's solos were pretty much a walking(?) CMoA. "Dancing in the Street", "Hot for Teacher", "Panama", "Drop Dead Legs"...
    • RUNNIN'. WITH. THE. DEVIL. Can you say Epic Riff?
  • Love's "Seven and Seven Is". If you're gonna go full tilt for two minutes, you've got to build up to a nuclear blast. Pretty intense for 1966.
  • "Revolve", "Queen", and "Roadbull" are some of the loudest, grittiest, and most jaw-droppingly spectacular pieces of stoner/grunge rock ever written.
  • "Search and Destroy", "Raw Power", and "Gimme Danger" are all excellent examples of truly glorious rock music. In fact, almost every song by The Stooges is as well.
  • "Cassie" by Flyleaf never fails to make for headbanging.
  • Heart has some amazing songs, but nothing beats this live version of "Alone".
  • Quiet Riot is basically the apotheosis of pop-metal. They blended all of the metal genre's elements - heavy blues, Gothic horror, insane riffs, and pinup sexuality - together into one inimitable package. All these years later, "Bang Your Head" is still terrifying. "Run For Cover" is probably their best song. And "The Wild and the Young" is an underrated gem: Frankie Banali's opening snare beat alone is proof that your world is about to get rocked really fucking hard.
  • Whitesnake deserve to be in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame someday, if only because they were one of the most technically accomplished bands of the '80s. Their 1987 album is pure gold, with not a single bad track. "Children of the Night" particularly deserves a mention: it proved to the band's critics that, yes, they could be subtle....and yet still be Badass, as well. Same with "Kitten's Got Claws" from Slip of the Tongue.
  • Semi-fictional, yes but Spinal Tap has given us plenty of immortal musical moments. "Tonight I'm Gonna Rock You Tonight", for example, is an Ear Worm for the ages. "Stonehenge" is a thrilling celebration of ancient paganism. And while "Break Like the Wind" may be an awful title, it is a flat-out mythic song. But then, would you expect any less from Joe Satriani?
  • Theory of a Deadman, anyone? "Deadly Game" and "Invisible Man" in particular. Those songs are like a comic book come to life.
  • Alter Bridge. They definitely beat the shit out of Creed. Especially "Open Your Eyes" and "Metalingus" (best known as the entrance theme for the "Rated-R Superstar" wrestler Edge). Whoever thought Christian salvation could sound so Badass?
    • "Isolation". Just...wow this song is pretty kickass. Especially in the choruses.
  • Journey in general is made of Awesome Music. There's songs like "Lights", which will invoke nostalgia for anyone who's been to the big cities; "Wheels In The Sky", which is PERFECT to blast on road trips; and last, but certainly not least, "Faithfully", which is THE GREATEST. LOVE SONG. EVER.
    • How about the medley of "Feeling That Way" and "Anytime" from Infinity?
    • "Separate Ways (Worlds Apart)" never fails to give those special feelings you only get from a great rock song.
    • And, quintessentially, "Don't Stop Believin'". One of the most recognizable classic rock songs ever, and the lyrics and melody are absolutely Made of Win. In 2009 it became the top-selling catalog track in iTunes history. Steve Perry had the perfect rock voice: "Do-on't stop/Be-lie-vin'/Hold on to that fee-ee-li-in'/Stree-eet lights/People oh-oh-ahhh..."

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