Classic Rock Issue 296 (The Year in Rock 2021) The Ultimate Review

Classic Rock Issue 296 (The Year in Rock 2021) The Ultimate Review

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Classic Rock Issue 296 (The Year in Rock 2021) The Ultimate Review

Note: The export/US version of Classic Rock does not include the two extra gifts (the 2022 Rock Icons wall calendar and a classic rock colouring book)... sorry. Those are included in the UK version only.

Featuring the best new albums, reissues and songs of 2021, plus Robert Plant, Roger Taylor, Alice Cooper, Bruce Dickinson, Lindsey Buckingham, Wolfgang Van Halen, Joanne Shaw Taylor and more...

Another year has rolled on by, and we’ve seen green shoots of a return to something approaching our old normality. And so it’s time for our annual look back at the past 12 months in rock.

The best albums of the year. The best reissues of the year. Our playlist of the year. And, along the way, we talk to a few of the artists who've ensured that rock kept rolling throughout 2021.


The Best Of 2021 - Another year over (just about), and another one in which there were fantastic new albums and lavish reissues. We look back at the 50 best new releases and the standout reissues. We also remember those people who rocked our world but have sadly left us in the past 12 months. We talk to some of the artists whose albums made our top-albums lists, or for whom 2021 has been a year to remember, including…

Alice Cooper - With his twenty-first studio album, Detroit Stories, an in-vintage-form Alice came up with a stone-cold classic

Lindsey Buckingham - Ousted from Fleetwood Mac, the guitarist/vocalist bounced back with one of our albums of 2021.

Wolfgang Van Halen - While having a rock-star parent opens a few doors, it also means you've got a lot to live up to and a lot to prove.

Bruce Dickinson - Iron Maiden frontman Bruce Dickinson on taking inspiration from Rammstein and looking forward to playing live “more than you can ever imagine”.

Roger Taylor - Having just released his highest charting solo album and toured it, the Queen man is enjoying life away from his ‘day job’.

Robert Plant - Finally, the duo have released Raise The Roof, the follow-up to their hugely successful Raising Sand album. And it was more than worth the wait

Joanne Shaw Taylor - Top of the list in our Blues Albums Of 2021 on burnout, her new covers album, working and relaxing with Joe Bonamassa, and being “a giant nerd”.

Francis Rossi - It's good to talk. Certainly Status Quo's Francis Rossi thinks so, as in 2021 he continued his marathon spoken-word tour around the UK. Classic Rock's Mick Wall was alongside him every step of the way.

Benji Webbe - The Skindred frontman on early gig memories, orchestral ambitions, and his recipe for having a perfect Christmas.


The Stories Behind The Songs: Nirvana - In the 30th-anniversary year of the game-changing Nevermind album, we take a look at the incendiary single (and video) that catapulted Nirvana from virtual unknowns to superstardom.

Back To Live - With gigs back on the agenda, we preview tours by The Dust Coda, Bruce Dickinson and Rick Wakeman. Plus full gig listings – find out who’s playing where and when.

The Soundtrack Of My Life: Huey Lewis - The songwriter, singer and band leader on the records, artists and gigs that are of lasting significance to him.


New albums from Volbeat, Bernie Marsden, Geese, Idles, Neil Young & Crazy Horse, Eagles Of Death Metal, Groundhogs, Chuck Berry, Jim Peterik & World Stage… Reissues from The Hellacopters, Eric Martin, Mountain, Pretty Things, U.K. Subs, The Band, The Temperance Movement, Green Day, Hammerfall… DVDs, films and books on Ritchie Blackmore, Eric Clapton, ELP, Bruce Springsteen, Robby Krieger… Live reviews of Roger Taylor, Biffy Clyro, The Courettes, Bauhaus, Johnny Marr, The Waterboys…