Best New Rock + Metal Songs of January – Staff Favorites + Tracks You Can’t Miss
Here are the best rock and metal songs of January, 2023!
January was yet another stacked month with tons of artists both big and small offering up new tunes to fuel the start of the new year. Beyond all the essentials — the tracks you can't afford to miss — the Loudwire staff has made selections for their own personal favorites from January.
There's literally hundreds of new songs coming out each week, but nothing was as good as what you'll find below!
Listen to and/or follow Loudwire's Best of the Month playlist here.
You know these bands and you probably heard these songs the instant they came out — midnight Spotify lurkers, we see you. These were the songs that kept January roaring:
All Time Low, “Tell Me I’m Alive”
Avatar, “Violence No Matter What” ft. Lzzy Hale
August Burns Red, “Backfire”
Babymetal, “METAL KINGDOM”
Black Stone Cherry, “Out of Pocket”
Chelsea Grin, “Sing to the Grave”
Crosses, “One More Try”
Daughtry + Lzzy Hale, “Separate Ways (World Apart)” (Journey cover)
Delain, “Moth to a Flame”
Enslaved, “Forest Dweller”
Enterprise Earth, “Death Magick”
Escape the Fate, “H8 MY SELF”
Fall Out Boy, “Love From the Other Side”
Falling In Reverse, "Watch the World Burn"
Ghost, “Spillways” ft. Joe Elliott
Ihsahn, “Contorted Monuments”
In Flames, “Meet Your Maker”
Insomnium, ‘The Witch Hunter”
Jethro Tull, “Ginnungagap”
Kamelot, “One More Flag in the Ground”
Maneskin, “GOSSIP” ft. Tom Morello
Metallica, “Screaming Suicide
Obituary, “My Will to Live”
Overkill, “The Surgeon”
Paramore, “C’est Comme Ça”
Pierce the Veil, “Even When I’m Not With You”
Pop Evil, “Dead Reckoning” ft. Fit For a King
Rival Sons, “Rapture”
Sabaton, “The First Soldier”
Sanguisugabogg, “Face Ripped off” ft. Aaron Heard
Skillet, “Finish Line”
Sleep Token, “The Summoning”
Theory of a Deadman, “Ambulance”
The Veer Union, “10:35”
The Winery Dogs, “Mad World”
Ville Valo, “Neon Noir”
Waterparks, “REAL SUPER DARK”
White Reaper, “Pink Slip”
The stuff Loudwire's team has been obsessed with.
RELEASED: Jan. 12
Is there such a genre as death sleaze? Australian band Ashen mixes a filthy stoner riff with classic death metal in their new track “Inhuman,” essentially giving the listener the sonic equivalent of a speedball. “Inhuman” is some slimy shit, like committing knife crime mid-apocalypse. It’s a strange, but oddly satisfying hybrid that should get metalheads interested in the band’s debut album, Ritual of Ash.
BAND: Scarlet Rot
SONG: “Born in Chaos”
RELEASED: Jan. 20
Hey Darko US fans, are you fiending for another two-person core supergroup of boundless destruction? Well, Infant Annihilator’s Dickie Allen and I, the Breather’s Logan Young have just launched Scarlet Rot. The new track “Born of Chaos” is another example of how chaotic modern deathcore can get following the watershed moment of Mick Gordon’s DOOM 2016 OST. So if you need more boss music in your life, grab a good pair of headphones and blast this pure savagery.
SONG: “Almost Everything”
RELEASED: Jan. 24
Being one of the only groups still standing from the Seattle music scene that kicked off in the late ‘80s, Mudhoney don’t really get the credit they deserve. Their 11th studio album will be out this coming April, and “Almost Everything” is a funky taste of it. The bassline and bongos come together to create one of the most unique intros to a Mudhoney song we’ve ever heard, and, as usual, the melody is complemented by an infectious, fuzzy guitar riff. To say Mark Arm is a creative genius would be an understatement — it’s about time everyone pays closer attention.
BAND: Decyfer Down
RELEASED: Jan. 27
Decyfer Down have been around quite a while, but their latest single “Cycles” paints a frightening picture of how social media has become such a dominating force in modern society. The lyrics discuss how people get lost in these virtual universes because they’re trying to create an image of themselves that isn’t always authentic to who they really are, and the powerful musicality behind the words help amplify how urgent this loss of reality has become.
BAND: Night Demon
RELEASED: Jan. 13
Anyone who has followed our monthly updates here knows that traditional heavy metal will always be the closest to my heart. And that’s not just resigned to the acts of decades gone by, certainly not when there’s literally hundreds of artists killing it in this style over the last 10-20 years.
Night Demon, with the self-titled debut single off their third full length, reassert their status as frontrunners in the pack. To these ears, “Outsider” is the power trio’s best track yet. I always love it when a song starts off right at the chorus, immediately breaking the mold of 100 or more new songs coming out in not quite as full force each week.
RIYL defending true steel.
BAND: Fires in the Distance
RELEASED: Jan. 26
Connecticut-based melodic death/doom troupe Fires in the Distance generated some buzz with their ultra Euro-flavored 2020 debut, Echoes From Deep November and now we’ve got the sullen “Harbingers,” the introductory track off the upcoming Air Not Meant For Us full length.
What this four-piece does best is exhibit restraint - the synths (as well as real classical string instruments) are never overbearing despite how much they drive the shifting moods and atmospheres across a dense 10-plus minutes of music and the guitar melodies are efficient, either as a lead or an accent. And the piano melodies? Chef’s kiss — mwooah!
BAND: Heaven’s Gate
SONG: “Into the Sinkhole”
RELEASED: Jan. 20
If you’re thinking, “Damn, how many thrash/crossover/hardcore bands does Tony Foresta need?” and then answer that for yourself in the negative, you’re a fool.
The group, who released an eponymous EP on Jan. 20, also features drummer Paul Mazurkiewicz (Cannibal Corpse), guitarist Mike Goo (Warthog) and bassist Jeff Howe (Reversal of Man), so that alone makes this mandatory listening.
All five of these songs rip, but I’ve singled out “Into the Sinkhole” because it’s a total bruiser played at a doomy pace where Foresta discharges some of the most aggressive and extreme vocals we’ve ever heard from him. So, yeah, the dude really does need another band, if you still held any doubt.
BAND: Black Honey
SONG: “Up Against It”
RELEASED: Jan. 18
Who loves their rock with a life lesson? Well, if it contains catchy hooks like these, why not learn to be a better person in the process? Black Honey’s “Up Against It” is a distortion-filled anthem for those being beaten down with slings from the mouths of others. Starting off with abrasive chugging guitar riffs, the song eventually settles into an infectious fuzzed-out rocker with a message to give yourself a break.
Vocalist Izzy Baxter also delivers an inspired stream of consciousness spoken word spiral in which she urges herself that the cruelty of others is only a temporary thing. Look for the song on Black Honey’s March 17 release, A Fistful of Peaches.
BAND: Daisy Jones & the Six
SONG: “Regret Me”
RELEASED: Jan. 25
Yes, Daisy Jones & The Six is also the name of the limited series from Amazon Studios and Hello Sunshine, but with the series’ arrival also comes a new album Aurora from the titular fictional band from the series. With series stars Riley Keough and Sam Claiflin taking the lead, the single “Regret Me” serves as a jangly ‘70s-tinged Fleetwood Mac-esque “all cards on the table” view of a deteriorating relationship, with neither of the leads letting up in their vitriol.
BAND: Story of the Year
RELEASED: Jan. 17
The St. Louis rockers may be well-removed from their 2003 breakout, but 20 years later they’re still cranking out solid rock gems. This anthemic cautionary tale visits the slippery slope of what happens when acting out over heartbreak turns all-consuming. With pop-punk circling back around in popularity, it’s time to give Story of the Year a new chapter.
BAND: Bass Drum of Death
SONG: "Everybody's Gonna Be There"
RELEASED: Jan. 24
Have you heard the news? Garage rock lives! You'll soon hear why: The noisy, surfy, melodic garage-punkers in Mississippi's Bass Drum of Death released their new album Say I Won't on Jan. 27. Preceded by cavernous and gritty power-pop singles such as "Everybody's Gonna Be There," the outfit's fifth studio effort proves the garage rock revival didn't necessarily end after The Strokes hit peak popularity.
Doesn't every musical genre come back around eventually? The wonders never cease. Right now, in an enclosed carport near you, some earnest band could be crafting a timeless garage pop masterpiece as good as this song.
BAND: Guided by Voices
SONG: "Released Into Dementia"
RELEASED: Jan. 20
Indie rock legends Guided by Voices manage to recapture the mood of their '90s lo-fi glory on "Released Into Dementia," the second song on the band's new album La La Land that emerged this month. After reforming in 2016, singer-songwriter and head GBV guru Robert Pollard seemed uninterested in tapping the spirit of the group's classic tape deck symphonies Alien Lanes (1995) or Bee Thousand (1994). But the aversion appears to have passed. La La Land is the first of at least two albums the absurdly prolific Guided by Voices will release in 2023 — Welshpool Frillies, their 39th (we think) studio album, is expected later this year.