Top 20 Rock Albums of 2023 (So Far)
This year is sounding quite familiar, as several artists revisit their pasts on their 2023 albums.
U2 and Stewart Copeland, drummer for the Police, put new spins on some of their classic songs on Songs of Surrender and Police Deranged for Orchestra, respectively, while Van Morrison reached back even further and recorded Moving On Skiffle, an entire album of songs from the U.K. era that spawned rock 'n' roll.
Still, other artists moved forward while looking back at their pasts. Both Foo Fighters and Depeche Mode released new albums following the deaths of longtime members of their bands in 2022. But Here We Are, Foo Fighters' first release since drummer Taylor Hawkins died at the age of 50 and Depeche Mode's Memento Mori, their first since LP co-founder Andy Fletcher's death, were informed by the losses. And both rank among the bands' greatest works.
Some veterans chose the collaborative route in 2023: John Cale brought in guests like Weyes Blood and Animal Collective for Mercy, Iggy Pop enlisted Chad Smith, Josh Klinghoffer and Duff McKagan for Every Loser, and Ian Hunter's Defiance Part 1 includes appearances from tons of friends and fans, from Ringo Starr to Slash to Jeff Beck. Taylor Hawkins, in some of his last session work before his death, appears on both Pop and Hunter's albums, too. Check out our list of the Top 20 Rock Albums of 2023 (So Far) below to see the best records this year has to offer.