Wednesday Question: Best Debut Albums?

What are the best debut albums of all time? Post your nominations here for a chance to appear in our top 10 this week.

Ultimate Guitar

No matter how big a band becomes, they all have to start somewhere. And often, it's their debut album that captures the hearts and minds of a generation of fans and lives on as their most genuine effort.

Sometimes the debut is more than just a fan favourite, and becomes an all time classic in its own right. Either way, the debut album is a special moment in any band's career - the sum of their whole life's experience, in fact.

This week's Wednesday question is:

What are the best debut albums ever?

We prefer if you pick full-length albums, but EPs are welcome if they're considered a landmark debut release. Don't post early demos - this is about hearing the first serious studio effort from your favorite bands of all time.

Post one couple nomination per comment, and up vote others you agree with. Look out for the final top 10 to see if your nomination makes it to the final post. Good luck!

931 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Aryan Death Man
    Jimi Hendrix - Are You Experienced?
    Shame it took so long to see Jimi listed. Are you Experienced is one of the best rock records start to finish. Oh and here's a wild card. Soundgarden's UltramegaOK.
    Pearl Jam - Ten
    Way Cool JR.
    I really loved this album when it first came out but I can't stand it now. But for Pearl Jam it was their best album and I can see why people like it.
    This easily is number 1 because they still can't even come close to making anything like it. Anything now is just false hope when comparing it to Ten.
    Led Zeppelin
    Although I'm not crazy about the band as a whole, Appetite For Destruction always stood out as an amazing debut album to me.
    Black Sabbath - Black Sabbath
    Thank God you posted this. As I was scrolling down I didn't see it and started to panic.
    Yes!!! That opening riff for Black Sabbath (the song) is still one of the heaviest riffs
    Not surprised to see this leading since this is overall more of a metal website. It's still a great album, but I don't think it should win. Maybe bottom half of the top 10.
    Aryan Death Man
    The Doors - The Doors (1967)
    Pink Floyd - "Piper at the gates of dawn" (also 1967)
    "00 Lucifer Sam - 4:12 Matilda Mother - 7:17 Flaming - 10:27 Pow. R Toc. H - 13:12 Take Up Thy Stethoscope and Walk - 17:38 Interstellar Overdrive - 20:43 The Gnome - 30:24 Chapter 24 - 32:39 The Scarecrow - 36:24 Bike - 38:36" (that was a comment by somebody on youtube^)
    If were gonna talk about late 60's debuts, King crimson - In The Court Of The Crimson King, it basically invented Prog.
    Why has it taken so long for this to get mentioned!?! Every single song is great and could be on their greatest hits!
    Alice in Chains - Facelift
    This x1000. Every song on that record bleeds excellence
    Man in a box is the main reason I finally purchased a Wah. Jerry Cantrell and Layne Staley (rest in piece) are gods, and this album showcased that beautifully.
    Appetite for Destruction
    appetite was officialy the best debut album of all time ( maybe adele has that record now I'm not really sure, but adle is commercial junk anyway) so it def should win
    Kill Em' All!
    Please Please Me
    Please Please Me is great but it's one of their weaker albums. It's the Beatles from Rubber Soul to Abbey Road (and arguably Help!) that's truly amazing.
    Thought about suggesting this one, certainly one of the most important/influential records in rock.
    Yes. This is an AMAZING record. I have no idea how u have so many downvotes? Some people here on UG are r_e_t_a_r_d_e_d
    It's because I called it a rock record rather than a pop record.
    people in here are all 10 year old kids who don't know about good music. THE BEATLES ARE ROCK
    The Beatles had strong influences on pop music as well as rock music. They bounced back and forth quite a bit between songs.
    It's probably because people get tired of hearing about the Beatles, above the other bands of the age and beyond. They brought a lot of good ideas to recording/production, but when you compare them to Pink Floyd, Black Sabbath, Deep Purple, The Who, Led Zeppelin, King Crimson, etc. are you really still surprised that other people don't think the Beatles are the gods of musical creation that you believe them to be? (e.g. Dark Side of the Moon trumps Sgt. Pepper every time)
    That's just, like, your opinion, man.
    Agreed. Love or hate them, you have to admit that The Beatles were as revolutionary as any band in the history of music, and if you downvote me then you're just too blind or ignorant to recognize it.
    dont get me wrong I love the Beatles as much as the next guy but please please me is by no means a great album
    Undertow (TooL) [in my opinion, that's their debut, versus Opiate]
    Why is this album so far down?? Undertow IS their debut album and it's Just GREAT!!!
    Rage Against the Machine - Rage Against the Machine. still used to test audio equipment in audiophile circles
    Another reason why that album is one of the best ever. The quality is ****ing OUTSTANDING
    "In the Court of the Crimson King" - King Crimson
    this needs to be on the list, it invented prog, best 5 songs that could ever be put on one album, not to mention how ahead of its time the tail end of Moonchild was and still is.
    Rage Against The Machine
    I'll probably get downvoted for this, but I want to bring a fantastic rap album on this list: The Notorious B.I.G. - Ready to Die
    Nas - Illmatic surely for rap debuts EDIT: trying to reply to UniformRecon and failed. sry and it's already been suggested worst post ever agreed
    too many fantastic rap debuts. whole nother discussion
    or devin the dude's debut album if anyone knows who he is one of the best rap albums ive ever heard imo.
    Agree. Great record.
    In all honesty, when it comes to RATM, Evil Empire is my absolute favorite, but their self-titled debut is a strong ass first record. It has to make the list.
    Great call! The first Rage album is amazing... I remember loving it when it first came out ('91 or 92'ish?) and I listened to it the other day and it sounds even better now.
    It sounds so good, it's actually the standard to use when testing stereo equipment. It's just clear as hell across the whole spectrum.
    Jeff Buckley - Grace
    First album I thought of was RATM Can I still change my vote? This guy deserves more than cult-status. WAY more
    I have been scrolling for ages hoping this wouldnt get lost at the bottom of the page. Thabk you good sir. If only he was still around to put out another release
    Kill Em All-Metallica
    I actually didn't like Kill 'em All much, they just didn't stay in rhythm very well. I love everything from Lightning to the Black album, but never liked that one much.
    Nine Inch Nails - Pretty Hate Machine
    I wanted to change my vote to this but it didn't pop up in my head at the time... also a great debut and really put hardcore music on the map in my opinion.
    Oasis - Definitely Maybe
    I think it speaks for itself when it's the album that revived Britpop.
    This. When your debut album kickstarts a whole generation in British music culture, it deserves some lovin' on UG top ten lists at least. Hell, I'm going to go and put it on now.
    im surprised i scrolled this far down to see this one. yes, i grew out of it in recent years, but back in the 90's/early 00's, i couldnt stop listening to oasis
    I was looking for this one among the comments. It is by no means one of my favourite albums (I think the sound is utter shit on most songs) but going from unknown band playing in pubs to worldwide, stadium gig playing phenomenon on the sole merit of your debut album should count for someting. Plus I think it still holds the record for fastest selling debut album ever (although I might be wrong on that one)
    System Of A Down (2000) - System Of A Down . Well ... this album really was something, first time I listened to it I had no idea what the feck it was but I loved it! It was such a different kind of balcanic/funk/art/metal which turned out to be great and mesmerizing (no pun intended). Such a great debut album.
    The Second Stage Turbine Blade
    I posted this to Reddit /r/TheFence to give it some notification don't hate
    Gorillaz - Gorillaz, BTW
    First album I ever bought. Took me years to fully appreciate the all the little subtleties and all the genius that went into it.