The new wave of classic rock: 15 guitar bands you need to know about

Stonefield, Dirty Honey and Thunderpussy
[L-R] Hannah Findlay of Stonefield, John Notto of Dirty Honey, Molly Sides of Thunderpussy (Image credit: Mariano Regidor/Redferns; Scott Legato/Getty Images; Jim Bennett/Getty Images)

SoCal rock 'n' roll crew Rival Sons have been kicking out the jams ever since they formed in 2009. So how, after six albums and a decade-plus in existence, did the four-piece find themselves entering 2021 as one of the forerunners of a new, surging musical movement dubbed the “New Wave of Classic Rock”?

“This type of sound is finding popularity as a kind of backlash to what we’ve been fed over the last 10 years,” says Rival Sons guitarist Scott Holiday. “Things move in cycles, and new rock ‘n’ roll – not alternative or metal, like a real rock ‘n’ roll sound – has been very hard to find over the last decade.”

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Brad Angle

Brad is a Brooklyn-based writer, editor and video producer. He is the former content director of Revolver magazine and executive editor of Guitar World. His work has appeared in Vice, Guitar Aficionado, Inked and more. He’s also a die-hard Les Paul player who wishes he never sold his 1987 Marshall Silver Jubilee half stack.