A good love song can steam up any romantic situation, especially when it's of the hard rock variety. On top of that, intimate power ballads are just plain fun to listen to — especially when they mix the might of rock instrumentation with the pining lyrics of a lover who's willing to do anything to be with their significant other.
But it doesn't have to be Valentine's Day — or any other day — for a headbanger to throw on the romantic stuff. Amorous rock tracks are best served when the mood strikes, and we can think of plenty to do the trick. (That said, Oct. 16 does happen to be Sweetest Day.)
But what are some of the most romantic hard rock love songs to get one (or two) in the mood? We've taken it upon ourselves to choose 10 we think are the best to get the fire going.
Ready to feel the love? Scroll through below to get a taste of some romantic rock songs that simply can't be beat. We have an inkling you'll be feeling lovey-dovey in no time.
Nickelback may be best known for their success with hits such as "Rockstar" and "Photograph," but the band made their romantic knack clear with All the Right Reasons single "Far Away." Sweet without being saccharine, the rock song that borders on pop is a devout expression of love. To wit, it'd make a fitting dedication to someone's sweetie. "I love you / I have loved you all along," Nickelback's Chad Kroeger sings.
3 Doors Down, "Here Without You"
Anyone who's been in love knows what it feels like to be away from their partner — especially for an extended amount of time. Absence makes the heart grow fonder, some may say, but in the thick of the moment, such platitudes do little to soothe. Of course, members of rock bands know good and well what it's like to be missing from their loved ones' lives when they're out on the road. 3 Doors Down do a great job encapsulating that feeling on their 2003 single "Here Without You."
Scorpions, "Still Loving You"
How can one mention power ballads without bringing up Scorpions? The German rockers are quite adept at cranking up the romance, and their early single "Still Loving You" — from 1984's Love at First Sting — is perhaps their most monumental example of the task. "It's a story about a love affair where they recognized it may be over, but let's try again," Scorpions founder Rudolf Schenker once explained. "It's the old story; always the old story."
Shinedown, "I'll Follow You"
Echoing the language in Gin Blossoms' 1996 hit "Follow You Down" — and undoubtedly plenty of others — Shinedown's "I'll Follow You" is a tear-wrenching account that probes the idea of going to the ends of the earth to be with one's lover. It's a brave notion, of course — whatever come may, we'll stay together — and Shinedown's booming rock only amplifies the feeling. "I'll follow you down / To the eye of the storm," singer Brent Smith wails. "Don't worry I'll keep you warm."
Halestorm, "Here's to Us"
Not all love songs have to be wistful, however. One of the most fun rock love songs is Halestorm's "Here's to Us," a tune that celebrates the romantic union and that feeling a couple gets when it's them against the world. Hey, if any rocker can make you feel good about your relationship, it's gotta be Halestorm singer-guitarist Lzzy Hale.
Papa Roach, "No Matter What"
Papa Roach are best known for "Last Resort" and their more pumped-up rock anthems. But the group can write a romantic song that easily tugs at the heartstrings. "No Matter What" is such a tune, a stirring anthem of devotion. "You are so beautiful / It should be criminal," frontman Jacoby Shaddix sings. Try that for your next pickup line.
Cinderella, "Don't Know What You Got (Till It's Gone)"
The 1980s were all about hair metal, and rockin' love songs seem like they were specifically suited for the style. Enter Cinderella, the Tom Keifer-led glam rockers who knew a thing or two about the power ballad. Just listen to their classic 1988 number "Don't Know What You Got (Till It's Gone)" if you don't believe us.
Mr. Big, "To Be With You"
Surprisingly, the hard rock love song is a bit of a slippery slope. (Hear us out on this one.) If a rock band trades the loud guitars and drums of the glammy power ballad for gentler acoustic strumming — to serve a more subdued romantic mood — they find themselves in decidedly soft rock territory. Regardless, there are plenty of good examples of this (Extreme's "More Than Words" and Guns N' Roses' "Patience" come to mind), so we feel it'd be remiss not to include at least one sample here. In that regard, Mr. Big's yearning 1991 hit "To Be With You" takes the cake.
Aerosmith, "I Don't Want to Miss a Thing"
Moviegoers can't help but hear Aerosmith's 1998 smash "I Don't Want to Miss a Thing" and not conjure up scenes from the blockbuster Armageddon. The two went hand-in-hand when the former was part of the latter's soundtrack, subsequently shooting to No. 1 on multiple music charts worldwide as a result. "I Don't Want to Miss a Thing" is all about bombast, and, truth be told, it borders heavily on the hokey without stepping inside — still, it really makes those longing feelings for one's sweetie swell up.
Guns N' Roses, "November Rain"
What can we even say about this one? If there ever was a hard rock love song to take the proverbial crown, it has to be Guns N' Roses' "November Rain," just based on grandiosity alone. Perhaps best remembered for its epic music video co-starring GNR singer Axl Rose's then-girlfriend, Stephanie Seymour, the tune itself is a 9-minute opus to unrequited love. "Don't ya think that you need someone?" Rose intones without a touch of irony. "Everybody needs somebody / You're not the only one."