1. Every Planet We Reach is Dead, by Gorillaz
I'm usually not all that into the heavily experimental kind of music, but Gorillaz kind of threw a curve ball at me recently when I was giving their iconic album Demon Days a full listen in the form of this song. It has this real swanky, bluesy/jazzy swagger to it. Something you wouldn't expect out of a group that primarily does more modern alternative rock/hip-hop stuff. The vocal harmonies are delicious. It's a nice fusion of old and new. When I read that Ike Turner did the keys, it all made a lot more sense to me. That said, check this out for yourself.
2. Blue Turk, by Alice Cooper
Continuing the jazzy/bluesy vibe, here is a deep cut from Alice Cooper. That bass line is one of the sexiest things I've ever heard. Really holds the whole tune together. The smooth trumpet solos are what really makes the tune sparkle and come alive, though. This is the furthest thing from rock n' roll, but I'm really ok with that. Honestly I really never would have expected a song like this out of Cooper, but I'm glad it exists. I think you'll be just as pleasantly surprised as I was when I first discovered this tune so many years ago.
3. Cleopatra, by The Lumineers
Changing things up a bit, this is a tune the singer in my band turned me onto last week. It's not my usual shindig, but I find the vocal melody along with the simple three chord progression to be rather pleasing to the ear. There is also nothing particularly rocking about this song either, but it's emotionally powerful. It's softer alternative rock, but I guess it doesn't hurt to give something different a try once in a while, right?
4. Cowboys from Hell, by Pantera
All right, all right. Back to the stuff with some volume and balls to it. This Pantera classic is a staple in any metalhead's playlist. It has some damn fine guitar work by the late Dimebag Darrel. You can hear a LOT of that Randy Rhoads influence in his playing, especially the solos. The intense vocal styling of Phil Anselmo is rather timeless and iconic as well. Granted it's not for everybody, but if you love metal then you're sure to do just fine.
5. Riff Raff, by AC/DC
This is one hell of a fun song. Then again, I have yet to find a song by AC/DC that isn't. While this might never have gotten much in the way of any airplay, it matches the level of energy and intensity of anything that has. This is 70's Bon Scott era AC/DC at their finest. That main riff is memorable (and one of the first AC/DC riffs I ever learned on guitar) and will keep you pumped for the entire duration of the song. It builds, crashes, and then launches you into overdrive. A must-have for anyone trying to get themselves going with music.