Top 20 Rock Albums, April 2013

Though this month's Top 20 is most certainly anchored by rock 'n' roll icons David Bowie (The Next Day being his first studio effort in a decade) and the late Levon Helm (in the form of a star-studded tribute album), April primarily sees a fast and furious deluge of modern jams. For folks who enjoy their rock shot through with pop, tunesmith extraordinaire Ryan Tedder and his outfit OneRepublic return with the hook-laden Native. The same goes for Bon Jovi's What About Now, which adds at least a half-dozen more rousing anthems, including lead single "Because We Can," to the band's already deep repertoire. Slightly more progressive (but no less pop-tastic) is Biffy Clyro's Opposites. Bona fide stars in its native Scotland for most of the past decade, the group is definitely primed to conquer the States with their latest collection of Muse-inspired art stuff.

And don't fret, all you lovers of the hard and heavy: Our Top 20 packs plenty of that, too. After a late-2012 release date in Europe and the U.K., Rival Sons' sophomore effort, Head Down, finally got a domestic release. (Hey, what took you so long?) If you're craving boogie metal heft and retro-Zeppelin caterwauls (courtesy of longhair dude Jay Buchanan), this is the album for you. Actually, you should probably also check out Clutch's Earth Rocker, seeing as how the veteran act is all about the boogie as well -- and the funk. As fellow Rhapsody scribe Chuck Eddy points out in his review, "Sounds like Maryland's stoner-funk musclemen have been digging Westbound-era Funkadelic." As for Sevendust's Black Out the Sun, it might not be quite as groove-centric, yet the band's ninth studio effort certainly unloads plenty of start-stop riff-raging and post-grunge brooding; there are also touches of screamo, which is something of a novelty for the alt metal badasses.

And now, on to the Top 20 rock releases for this month.

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