Top 10 Shock Rock Bands of All Time
Shock Rock might best be described as a bastard cousin of heavy metal, or perhaps a twisted sister of punk rock that transcends genres, and can be applied to a cluster of bands, artists, and styles of music over the past three to four decades, respectively.
Triple X Records Rosemary's Billygoat
Sometimes Shock Rock can be used as a pejorative; other times it is a fittingly accurate description of a music, style, image, stage show or persona of a band or performer. Early proto metal /hard rock acts such as Alice Cooper (known as the father of Shock Rock) created a theatrical based experience to accompany the typical rock concert.
Performances often included the use of makeup, costumes, blood, fire, self-injuries, destruction of property, sexual simulations and, in Cooper's case, even mock decapitations. This early sound gave way to bands such as KISS, The Plasmatics, Sex Pistols, Iggy Pop, and hordes of others, whose live shows and aesthetics are both violent and extreme. Shock Rock can encompass anything from psychedelic and classic rock, black metal, grind core, punk, thrash, and even industrial.
This list aims to showcase some of the most prominent Shock Rock artists, yet at the same time give credit to others who are less known, but whose contributions to the scene remain relevant. Most of all, the artists on this list were chosen because they were not afraid to push the limits of artistic expression. If you're not offended, shocked or disgusted at the following musicians, then we didn't do our job. We now present the top 10 Shock Rock Bands of All Time.
For just over two decades, this local horror punk band with roots in Southern California has gathered a cult following for its spectacular live shows which include an electric chair, mock crucifixion, flaming pentagrams, fire breathing and an oozing brew of doom, stoner metal, dark psychedelic rock and hardcore punk.
A psychotic, medieval-themed stage show, over the top theatrics, and a mysterious energy over the years has allowed Rosemary's Billygoat to share the stage with The Dickies, 45, Grave, Circle Jerks, GWAR, Green Jelly, WASP and tons more.
The Dwarves began in the mid '80s in the Chicago area, and first started as a garage rock band, but later evolved into more of a hardcore punk sound. Led by vocalist Blag Dahlia and guitarist HeWhoCannotBeNamed, the band has undergone multiple lineup changes. The band gained notoriety in the late '80s on into the early '90s for unpredictable, often-violent live shows. Furthering their status as a cult band, many of the bands performances resulted in violence among the crowd and even the band themselves. Intense fistfights were a common at Dwarves shows.
HeWhoCannotBeNamed often performs with a wrestling mask and jockstrap. While the other band members sometimes wear various costumes. Over the years, the band has also been accused of performing various simulated and real sex acts on stage. The Dwarves create a sonic form of music that is full of perversity, sexuality, carnal lust, rage, violence, and a hardcore punk rock ethos. The band's sound have developed to include wider ranges of influences including surf rock, grunge, hardcore, pop punk and even hip-hop.