The Best Albums of 2019, #10


10. Danko Jones, A Rock Supreme (Rise Above)

As I’ve mentioned many times before, I am subjected to an inordinate amount of bro-ey rock music at my place of employment, and as much as I’ve had to tune out the same male rock music from the ’70s through the ’90s, I also have to hear a great deal of exceptionally mediocre new male rock music. The overrated and amateurish Greta Van Fleet aside, look at these names of bands who have had constant airplay on Canadian rock radio in 2019: Blue Stones, Glorious Sons, BRKN Love, Half Moon Run, W3apons, Dirty Honey, Static Shift, Highly Suspect, Head and the Heart, Black Pistol Fire. Who? Again, who?! Every single one of those bands is forgettable, generic, and come across as genuine as Blues Hammer. THIS is the best rock music has to offer in 2019, according to corporate radio?

As usual, corporate radio is dead wrong, and it is criminal that it ignored a career-best album by the mighty Canadian Danko Jones. The man has been churning out great, high-energy hard rock for 20-odd years now, and A Rock Supreme sees him and his band capturing the aggression, riffs, hooks, and all-out fun in a way they’ve never done before. Starting with the gloriously meta “I’m in a Band”, it’s a 41-minute crystallization of everything that makes Danko such a riot. Unlike those cookie cutter bands I mentioned, he doesn’t mimic rock cliches; instead, he celebrates them. When you write songs called “Dance Dance Dance”, “We’re Crazy”, and “Burn in Hell”, you sure as hell had better sell it in a way that makes it stick out, and Danko goes all-in, imploring you to embrace the goofiness and energy instead of acting like you’ve heard it all before. Meanwhile, you’ve got tracks like “Lipstick City”, “Fists Up High”, “You Got Today”, and “That Girl” which are phenomenal combinations of Motörhead, ’70s KISS, and Thin Lizzy. This album has hung around me all year long, and I have yet to tire of it, and every time I blast it, it cleanses my musical palate after hearing so much inferior music. Danko is the man. Go buy this joyous record now.