Tuesday, May 11, 2021

The Top 50 Heavy Metal Songs

Heavy Metal:

Top 50 Songs

Heavy metal is rooted in the hard rock of the late ‘60s and ‘70s, most often attributed to Black Sabbath, Deep Purple, and Led Zeppelin, who all got their start in England in 1968. Distortion, extended guitar solos, and overall loudness characterized the genre and the lyrics are often stereotyped as having Satanic themes.

However one defines the genre, here are the top 50 heavy metal songs as determined by aggregating 32 best-of lists. Those songs appearing on 7 or more lists were then re-ranked based on overall points in Dave’s Music Database.

Click here to see other genre-specific song lists.

1. Black Sabbath “Paranoid” (1970)
2. AC/DC “Back in Black” (1980)
3. Guns N’ Roses “Welcome to the Jungle” (1987)
4. Metallica “Enter Sandman” (1991)
5. Deep Purple “Smoke on the Water” (1973)
6. Metallica “One” (1988)
7. AC/DC “Highway to Hell” (1979)
8. Kiss “Rock and Roll All Nite” (1975)
9. Ozzy Osbourne “Crazy Train” (1980)
10. Guns N’ Roses “Paradise City” (1987)

11. Black Sabbath “Iron Man” (1970)
12. Scorpions “Rock You Like a Hurricane” (1984)
13. Van Halen “Runnin’ with the Devil” (1978)
14. Motörhead “Ace of Spades” (1980)
15. Metallica “Master of Puppets” (1988)
16. Black Sabbath “War Pigs” (1970)
17. Judas Priest “You’ve Got Another Thing Coming” (1982)
18. Judas Priest “Breaking the Law” (1980)
19. Iron Maiden “Run to the Hills” (1982)
20. Kiss “Detroit Rock City” (1976)

21. AC/DC “Hells Bells” (1980)
22. Iron Maiden “Hallowed Be Thy Name” (1982)
23. Quiet Riot “Bang Your Head (Metal Health)” (1983)
24. Whitesnake “Still of the Night” (1987)
25. Iron Maiden “The Number of the Beast” (1982)
26. Dio “Holy Diver” (1983)
27. Black Sabbath “Black Sabbath” (1970)
28. Iron Maiden “The Trooper” (1983)
29. Deep Purple “Highway Star” (1972)
30. Megadeth “Symphony of Destruction” (1992)

31. Dio “Rainbow in the Dark” (1983)
32. Ozzy Osbourne “Mr. Crowley” (1980)
33. Megadeth “Peace Sells” (1986)
34. Metallica “Fade to Black” (1984)
35. Judas Priest “Painkiller” (1990)
36. Pantera “Walk” (1992)
37. Megadeth “Holy Wars…The Punishment Due” (1990)
38. Slayer “Raining Blood” (1986)
39. Megadeth “Hangar 18” (1990)
40. Metallica “For Whom the Bell Tolls” (1984)

41. Pantera “Cowboys from Hell” (1990)
42. Judas Priest “The Hellion/Electric Eye” (1982)
43. Black Sabbath “Heaven and Hell” (1980)
44. Black Sabbath “Children of the Grave” (1971)
45. Rainbow “Stargazer” (1976)
46. Slayer “Angel of Death” (1986)
47. Accept “Balls to the Wall” (1983)
48. Iron Maiden “Rime of the Ancient Mariner” (1984)
49. Iron Maiden “Fear of the Dark” (1992)
50. Diamond Head “Am I Evil?” (1980)


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First posted 1/24/2018; last updated 5/11/2021.

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