30 rock albums to look forward to in 2023 (2023)

Planet Rock presents 30 rock and heavy metal albums we’re looking forward to over the next 12 months.

Alongside the locked in releases, we’ve included some records that are still in progress but we’re hoping will see the light of day this year!

Uriah Heep – ‘Chaos & Colour’

Uriah Heep's first album in five years, '', was once again produced by Jay Ruston (Anthrax, Corey Taylor, Black Star Riders) and recorded at Chapel Studios in London. The band's sole constant member Mick Box explains that the pandemic very much inspired the title of 'Chaos & Colour' and shaped some of its themes. "The album title reflects that we were in chaotic times with being locked down, tours being cancelled, businesses folding, and all the chaos that was thrown into the world," says Box. "As far as I could see it, the only colour people had was through music. It helped so many people get through those difficult years, using that strength and power which music has, to make those bad times not quite so bad."
Release date: 27th January 2023

Black Star Riders – ‘Wrong Side of Paradise’

Featuring the Planet Rock playlisted gem 'Better Than Saturday Night' and Black Star Riders' barnstorming cover of The Osmonds' 'Crazy Horses', the band's fifth studio album 'Wrong Side of Paradise' is their first without founding member Scott Gorham, who officially exited the band in 2021. The 11-track record was recorded at Studio 606 in Northridge California and Toochtoon Sound in Redmond Oregon with long-term producer Jay Ruston at the helm. "As with all BSR albums, 'Wrong Side Of Paradise' is an anthemic statement of intent, driven by ferocious guitars and thundering drums," comments frontman Ricky Warwick. "I can only write about my own personal experiences, my families, my friends and how I see a world that is unravelling and changing faster than we can comprehend. That being said, I'm a firm believer in the power of positivity, something that echoes throughout this album."
Release date: 20th January 2023

Metallica – ’72 Seasons’

Metallica's first studio album since 2016's 'Hardwired…To Self-Destruct' clocks in at over 77 minutes and features 12 songs including the barnstorming Planet Rock playlisted anthem 'Lux Æterna' that harks back to the band's embryonic years. Commenting on the concept for '72 Seasons', James Hetfield says: "72 seasons. The first 18 years of our lives that form our true or false selves. The concept that we were told 'who we are' by our parents. A possible pigeonholing around what kind of personality we are. I think the most interesting part of this is the continued study of those core beliefs and how it affects our perception of the world today. Much of our adult experience is re-enactment or reaction to these childhood experiences. Prisoners of childhood or breaking free of those bondages we carry."
Release date: 14th April 2023

Sophie Lloyd – ‘Imposter Syndrome’

Currently rocking Planet Rock's airwaves with the high octane 'Do Or Die' featuring the powerful vocals of Inglorious frontman Nathan James, fast-ascending guitar phenomenon Sophie Lloyd will release her debut album 'Imposter Syndrome' in 2023. Just like the lead single, the record will feature an array of guest vocalists, many of whom Sophie idolised growing up. Sophie enthuses: "I can finally say that I have new music coming! All my music before was instrumental, so this is a very special release for me as it includes vocals, and some of the people we've worked with are people I used to have as posters on my wall as a kid, so it feels very full circle. It's something that I have been working on before the first lockdown, and to be here talking about it feels amazing!"
Release date TBC

Rival Sons – ‘Darkfighter’

The mighty Rival Sons will release their first album in four years, 'Darkfighter', on Friday 2nd June 2023 and it has once again been helmed by producer Dave Cobb. Featuring eight tracks, Rival Sons have promised the record is "cinematic" in scope, and if searing leads single 'Nobody Wants To Die' is anything to go by, it's sure to be very special indeed. Commenting on the record's weighty lyrical themes, singer Jay Buchanan says: "'Darkfighter represents the cultural mitosis of isolation, the Pandemic, and the national fabric of the US getting looser and looser. When I say 'Cultural Mitosis', there are lines being drawn constantly. We're so divided, and you can't step over the lines without offending someone. It certainly informed my writing. We recognized a responsibility to put a good word on people's ears so there's a good word coming back on their tongues too. We missed the joy of the live show and that magical interaction. When it was taken from us, that made me want to sing about topics that were important. There are strong themes on this record of loss of identity, preservation of joy, and beholding light and shape again."
Release date: 10th March 2023

Floor Jansen – ‘Paragon’

Nightwish singer Floor Jansen's debut solo album 'Paragon' is a departure from the symphonic metal of her day job, and instead features 'a diverse collection of pop-infused tracks and emotional ballads influenced by the sounds of her career.' Jansen has already released three singles from 'Paragon' - 'Me Without You', 'Storm' and 'Fire' - and she's extremely excited about her solo venture, enthusing: "To renew yourself and take leaps into the unknown makes you grow. To age is a gift not everyone gets. I am a fortunate woman who got to make an album I never knew I could make. One that even defines me, where I am on my path. I have reached my Paragon! I am so proud of this work! And grateful for all the amazing people in this beautiful life that helped me get here!"
Release date: 24th March 2023

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Jethro Tull – TBA

Fresh from releasing 'The Zealot Gene' – their first album of original material in 23 years - Jethro Tull have confirmed they have finished recording their as-yet-untitled new album, with a release date planned for the spring. Frontman and founder member Ian Anderson says of their 23rd studio album: "We have been putting the finishing touches to the artwork for the album cover and wrapped up the recording and mixing a few weeks ago. It's a little too early just yet to tease you with titles, tracklists and content, but rest assured that it is all done and dusted as to mastering and the main elements of art and packaging. I hope you will like the concept and themes when I am ready to tell you more."

Those Damn Crows – ‘Inhale/Exhale’

Bridgend livewires Those Damn Crows' new record 'Inhale/Exhale' boasts 10 songs and it was recorded at Vada Studios in rural Warwickshire and Giant Wafer Studios in Wales, with producer Dan Weller. The album is preceded by the powerful and intensely personal single 'This Time I'm Ready', which frontman Shane Greenhall wrote about his late dad. "'This Time I'm Ready' is a song about a one-way conversation I have with my Dad," comments Greenhall. "He's been gone 11 years now but as anyone who's ever lost and grieved somebody close, you never stop talking to them as they were (and will continue to be) a huge part in your life. I think the whole grieving process can be both mentally and emotionally brutal, with long lasting effects. Everyone deals with pain and grief differently, I believe it's made me stronger and genuinely given me more incentive and desire to go do the things I want to do... 'This time I'm ready, light the fire in me.'"
Release date: 17th February 2023

Nita Strauss – TBA

After an eventful 2022 which saw her depart Alice Cooper's band for Demi Lovato's touring group, guitar shredder extraordinaire Nita Strauss is set to unleash her second solo album in 2023. The follow-up to 2018's 'Controlled Chaos' will feature the singles 'Dead Inside' (featuring Disturbed's David Draiman), 'The Wolf You Feed' (featuring Arch Enemy's Alissa White-Gluz) and the rip-roaring instrumental track 'Summer Storm.' Commenting on the latter track, Strauss says: "Instrumental music is where my heart is, and 'Summer Storm' might be the song I feel captures my personal style the most: cathartic, driving and emotional. While a lot of the upcoming record will have guest vocalists, I'm also so proud of the instrumental tracks and excited to officially unleash this one on the world!"

Alice Cooper – TBA

Alongside helming his show on Planet Rock, shock rock legend Alice Cooper has been busy working on two studio albums over the past couple years. Alice told Eddie Trunk a few months ago: "One (album) is written — totally written… and then the other one is just a touch in the future, but that's being written right now too. They're two entirely different kinds of albums, but they're Alice Cooper pure rock and roll albums." Producer Bob Ezrin added: "One (album) is very hard rock; the other one is hard rock but it's twisted. And that's all I can say about it right now, because there's a couple of really important things about both albums." Hopefully at least one of them will see the light of day this year!

Skindred – ‘Smile’

Welsh reggae metallers Skindred will mark their 25th anniversary in 2023 with the release of their eighth album 'Smile' via Earache Records. Featuring the earth-shattering lead single 'Gimme That Boom', Skindred's representatives have hailed the album as the band's "masterpiece." Blurb promoting 'Smile' reads: "These two sides of the album, ranging from joy to rage and love to fury, suggest that 'Smile' is going to be hailed as the band's masterpiece; an album that brings together all facets of Skindred's music – from reggae to metal, rock to pop, dub to electro – into the most mind-expanding and potent collection of songs, designed to melt stereos around the world."
Release date: Summer 2023

Extreme – TBA

Extreme's first album in 15 years could well be on the way in 2023. In an interview with Eddie Trunk last July, singer Gary Cherone enthused that the record contains some career-best material. "I think this is some of the best stuff Nuno (Bettencourt) and I have written," he boldly proclaimed. "I think he would say the same thing… There's only one Nuno and he outdid himself on this record. His solos blow me away. I'm proud of a lot of the songs on the record."

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Iggy Pop – ‘Every Loser’

Punk legend Iggy Pop, who recently retired from stage diving aged 75, has drafted in an array of guest performers for his new studio album 'Every Loser' including Duff McKagan, Chad Smith, Josh Klinghoffer, Travis Barker, Stone Gossard, Dave Navarro and the late-great Taylor Hawkins. The record is helmed by Grammy winning Ozzy Osbourne producer Andrew Watt. Iggy Pop said: "The players are guys I've known since they were kids, and the music will beat the s--- out of you."
Release date: 6th January 2023

Judas Priest – TBA

Judas Priest commenced work on the follow-up to 2018's 'Firepower' way back in February 2020 when Rob Halford, Glenn Tipton and Richie Faulkner posted a photo from the recording studio. Of course, the pandemic got in the way of things, and in September 2021 Faulkner almost died when he suffered an aortic aneurysm and complete aortic dissection on stage during Priest's performance at Louder than Life festival. Despite the significant hurdles, Priest have been busy working on their new record, and in October Rob Halford proudly proclaimed, "In essence, it's done."

Greta Van Fleet – TBA

Fresh-faced Frankenmuth rockers Greta Van Fleet have confirmed their third album is almost in the can. Drummer Danny Wagner told Heavy Consequence: "It's nearing completion, and we're very excited about it." Bassist Sam Kiszka adds: "It's conceptually going back to almost the days in the garage, with the raw energy of the sound. But expanding on that because we're the best musicians we've ever been." Greta Van Fleet's last album 'The Battle at Garden's Gate' was released in 2021.

The Winery Dogs – ‘III’

Richie Kotzen, Mike Portnoy and Billy Sheehan's aptly entitled third album 'III' boasts 10 tracks including the "fierce" lead single 'Xanadu.' The trio were inspired to commence work on the record way back in 2019 following a 22-date tour called Who Let The Dogs Out. Mike Portnoy says: "That was a fun little tour that reignited our enthusiasm — and that's also when we knew a third album was definitely in the cards." Billy Sheehan adds: "Getting back together like that was really refreshing. We could relax a bit and enjoy being together onstage, playing without any pressure. It was a beautiful thing." Following in the footsteps of their first two albums, 'III' was once again produced by The Winery Dogs and mixed by long-time band associate Jay Ruston.
Release date: 3rd February 2023

Mammoth WVH – TBA

Having wowed at the Taylor Hawkins Tribute Concerts and his opening slot on Alter Bridge's UK arena tour, Wolfgang Van Halen and his Mammoth WVH band mates will release album no.2 in 2023. We don't know too much about the follow-up to 2021's acclaimed 'Mammoth WVH', but Wolfgang has been posting images from the studio on social media confirming that recording process has begun. Speaking to Guitar World magazine, Wolfgang says he finds making music a cathartic experience in the wake of his dad Eddie Van Halen's death in October 2020. "There's many times when I don't have the strength to do anything, and more than not, that seems to be the case but you've got to find the things that give you life," Wolfgang said. "For me, that's music and being able to wake up every day and think about how I am going to create this second album. It's stressful, but it's also very exciting, and it's what I pull all my thinking into."

Tony Iommi – TBA

The Iron Man kicked off 2023 by posting a video message to fans revealing he's working on a new studio album this year. "I've been writing and recording," Tony said. "I'm having a new studio built, which I'm really pleased about. Well, actually, the studio is built, and it's almost ready to go; I'm just waiting for some equipment. Because of the war (in Ukraine), it's sort of stopped some of the parts coming through. But we're almost there. In another couple of weeks, I think I'll be ready to go in and start work in there, which I'm really looking forward to – writing another album." Alongside potentially releasing a new solo album, Iommi has confirmed Black Sabbath will reissue their Tony Martin-era albums this year. Nice!

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Anthrax – TBA

According to guitarist Scott Ian, Anthrax's new studio album 'should' be released in 2023. Speaking with Midwest Beatdown last August, Ian hinted that the follow-up to 2016's 'For All Kings' will very fiery. He said: "With the song writing that we have right now, going into what will eventually be a new Anthrax album, it just lends itself to even a more aggressive production which I think we will have no problem accomplishing." It remains to be seen whether drummer Charlie Benante's touring commitments with Pantera will stall the release of the new Anthrax record.

Europe – TBA

Europe guitarist John Norum confirmed the Swedish rockers will commence recording their first album since 2017's 'Walk The Earth' in May 2023 "We're gonna start working," Norum explained. "The plan is to start recording in May. So we are writing right now as we speak; everyone is writing new songs." Alongside the new material, Europe are planning to celebrate the 40th anniversary of their eponymous debut album with a box set and tour.

Steve Vai – ‘Vai/Gash’

Guitar virtuoso Steve Vai will start 2023 in style by released his 11th solo studio album 'Vai/Gash'. The eight songs it contains date back more than 30 years, as Vai explains: "This record was written and recorded in somewhat of a stream of consciousness in 1991 within perhaps a two-week period as an answer to my desire to have a particular kind of music to listen to when I was riding my Harley Davison Motorcycle with my friends. It's reminiscent of a certain type of rock music I enjoyed as a teenager in the 1970's. These recordings sat on the shelf for over 30 years and are being released now in 2023."
Release date: 27th January 2023

Airbourne – TBA

In summer 2022, Australian hard rock livewires Airbourne revealed their plans to release their sixth studio album this year. Refreshingly, unlike many records released in recent years, the album will definitely not be inspired by lockdown or the pandemic. Frontman Joel O'Keeffe told Eonmusic: "We did make an executive decision during lockdown not to be too focused on trying to make rock and roll songs that make you feel very good in an environment where you're depressed and you're being held down by the man." His drumming sibling Ryan O'Keeffe added: "We wanted to see people again and play to crowds again before we even think about (recording music); that's what we've always done." Hopefully we'll hear some new tunes at Steelhouse Festival this July!

Steel Panther – ‘On the Prowl’

After founding member Lexxi Foxx exited the band in 2021, comedy rockers Steel Panther have since recruited Spyder as their new full-time bassist, and they show no signs of slowing down with the upcoming release of their sixth studio album 'On the Prowl' and an accompanying headline UK tour in May. Lead single '1987' is a musical ode to the year in the title with Guns N' Roses, Poison, Whitesnake, Ozzy Osbourne and Van Halen all namechecked. Elsewhere on the record, expect typically crude and daft lyrics, and gloriously overblown rock music on tracks like 'On Your Instagram,' 'Pornstar' and 'One Pump Chump.'
Release date: 24th February 2023

Queens of the Stone Age – TBA

In October 2022, Eagles of Death Metal frontman Jesse Hughes let slip that his band mate Josh Homme had recorded a new Queens of the Stone Age album. During an Instagram livestream, Hughes was asked about his recent activities. He replied: "Recording a new record. Queens (of the Stone Age) just did one, now we're doing ours now." QOTSA's last album, the Mark Ronson produced 'Villains', was released in August 2017.

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The Answer – ‘Sundowners’

Northern Irish rockers The Answer made their sensation live return at Planet Rockstock after six long years away in December, and they will continue their comeback in 2023 with album no.7 'Sundowners' and a headline UK tour. Produced by Dan Weller (Enter Shikari, Bury Tomorrow, Those Damn Crows) and recorded at Middle farm studios in Devon, 'Sundowners' features 11 songs including lead single 'Want You To Love Me.' Enthusing about working with The Answer, Dan Weller says: "I've been swamped by loads of rock bands wanting to make records but when I heard these The Answer demos, I was literally gob smacked – fabulous song after song, crafted, kicking ass, it was almost too good to be true, I simply had to get involved."
Release date: 17th March 2023

Within Temptation – TBA

Fresh from triumphing on their co-headline Worlds Collide UK tour with Evanescence, Dutch symphonic metallers Within Temptation are primed to release their as-yet-untitled eighth album this year. Within Temptation have already shared five excellent tracks from the record, including the Planet Rock playlisted gem 'Don't Pray For Me', and the omens look very good indeed for another killer album.


Blackie Lawless says he wants to finish W.A.S.P.'s 16th studio album before he comes to the UK in the spring on their delayed 40th anniversary tour. "We had started working on a record over a year ago and I'm hoping to be able to finish it sometime in January/February," Lawless told Eddie Trunk. "It won't be out until after the tour is finished, but I'm hoping to have it wrapped up by the time we start." Reflecting on the musical direction, Lawless said: "I want this to be a rock and roll record — an old-time rock and roll record. That's what I'm feeling. And it could be some sort of adverse reaction to what's going on in the world, maybe." W.A.S.P.'s last album 'Golgotha' was released in October 2015.

Slipknot – ‘Look Outside Your Window’

Slipknot percussionist Shawn 'Clown' Crahan says the Iowan masked metallers might unleash their unreleased 'Look Outside Your Window' album in 2023. Recorded during the sessions for their 2008 album 'All Hope Is Gone', the 11-track record features musical contributions from only four Slipknot band members – Crahan, singer Corey Taylor, guitarist Jim Root and DJ Sid Wilson. "It's an amazing body of work," Crahan enthused to Upset Magazine. "You will never hear another Corey Taylor like this. The music and the words… it's one of the best things I've ever done in my life."

Pearl Jam – TBA

Back in January 2022 it emerged that Seattle grunge icons Pearl Jam had joined forces with Ozzy Osbourne producer Andrew Watt at his basement studio to lay down some material. Asked about the band's upcoming plans, Eddie Vedder told Mojo: "We'll make a record with Andrew, I believe. We've already talked about it." Vedder explained that Pearl Jam were working on the follow-up to 2020's 'Gigaton' as they "a strong, healthy ambition to do so." Andrew Watt is a self-professed Pearl Jam mega fan so we're excited to see the results.

Avenged Sevenfold – TBA

After years of teasing new material, Huntington Beach metallers Avenged Sevenfold updated the description of their official website in November 2022 with the words 'Official website for Avenged Sevenfold. New album out 2023.' Drummer Brooks Wackerman has previously described the follow-up to 2016's 'The Stage' as "unlike anything we've ever released."

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