Top 50 Metal Songs Of All Time

For the last week, Gibson.com has been slowly revealing their staff-selected list of the Top 50 Metal Songs of All Time.

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For the last week, Gibson.com has been slowly revealing their staff-selected list of the Top 50 Metal Songs of All Time. Today marks the final day of that process, as the Top 10 have finally been unveiled. Gibson also released the results of their readers' poll today with a list of the Top 25 Metal Songs of All Time as chosen by visitors to the site.

Metallica's "Master Of Puppets" was chosen as Gibson.com's #1 pick, with Motrhead's "Ace Of Spades" and Ozzy's "Crazy Train" rounding out the top 3. Metal gods Judas Priest dominated the Top 50 list, with 7 songs selected by the staff. Iron Maiden and Black Sabbath both came away with 6 selections, in what turned out to be a good poll for British Heavy Metal bands.

At the top of the Readers' Poll is Iron Maiden's epic "Hallowed Be Thy Name." The Readers' Poll ended up being a much more diverse list than the staff picks, with bands ranging from classic rockers Mountain to symphonic metallers Nightwish making the Top 25. The fans also chose to include Led Zeppelin under the "Metal" category, with "Stairway To Heaven" and "Whole Lotta Love" making the list.

It seems the Readers' Poll was friendlier to newer acts as well, with Slipknot's "Psychosocial" and Lamb Of God's "Laid To Rest" both making the 25-song cut.

Without further ado, here are the full lists:

Gibson.com's Top 50 Metal Songs of All Time:

01. Master of Puppets, Metallica 02. Ace of Spades, Motrhead 03. Crazy Train, Ozzy Osbourne 04. Iron Man, Black Sabbath 05. The Number of the Beast, Iron Maiden 06. War Pigs, Black Sabbath 07. Paranoid, Black Sabbath 08. One, Metallica 09. Hallowed Be Thy Name, Iron Maiden 10. Breaking the Law, Judas Priest 11. Children of the Grave, Black Sabbath 12. Welcome to the Jungle, Guns N' Roses 13. Black Sabbath, Black Sabbath 14. Hells Bells, AC/DC 15. The Trooper, Iron Maiden 16. Painkiller, Judas Priest 17. Stargazer, Rainbow 18. Enter Sandman, Metallica 19. Back in Black, AC/DC 20. Runnin' with the Devil, Van Halen 21. The Hellion/Electric Eye, Judas Priest 22. Run to the Hills, Iron Maiden 23. Let it Go, Def Leppard 24. Epic, Faith No More 25. Hangar 18, Megadeth 26. Rime of the Ancient Mariner, Iron Maiden 27. You've Got Another Thing Comin', Judas Priest 28. Fear of the Dark, Iron Maiden 29. Raining Blood, Slayer 30. Walk, Pantera 31. Holy Diver, Dio 32. Highway to Hell, AC/DC 33. Heaven and Hell, Black Sabbath 34. Bulls on Parade, Rage Against the Machine 35. Fade to Black, Metallica 36. Angel of Death, Slayer 37. Peace Sells, Megadeth 38. Freak on a Leash, Korn 39. Them Bones, Alice in Chains 40. Cemetery Gates, Pantera 41. Detroit Rock City, KISS 42. Devil's Child, Judas Priest 43. Run with the Wolf, Rainbow 44. Would?, Alice in Chains 45. We're Not Gonna Take It, Twisted Sister 46. Hell Bent for Leather, Judas Priest 47. Beyond the Realms of Death, Judas Priest 48. Bomber, Motrhead 49. Unchained, Van Halen 50. 10,000 Days (Wings, Part II), Tool

Gibson Readers' Top 25 Metal Songs of All Time:

01. Hallowed Be Thy Name, Iron Maiden 02. Paranoid, Black Sabbath 03. Master of Puppets, Metallica 04. Never in My Life, Mountain 05. Iron Man, Black Sabbath 06. Enter Sandman, Metallica 07. One, Metallica 08. Black Sabbath, Black Sabbath 09. Crazy Train, Ozzy Osbourne 10. Ace of Spades, Motrhead 11. Laid to Rest, Lamb of God 12. The Number of the Beast, Iron Maiden 13. Bang Your Head (Metal Health), Quiet Riot 14. Psychosocial, Slipknot 15. Children of the Grave, Black Sabbath 16. Run to the Hills, Iron Maiden 17. Rime of the Ancient Mariner, Iron Maiden 18. Stairway to Heaven, Led Zeppelin 19. War Pigs, Black Sabbath 20. Creek Mary's Blood, Nightwish 21. Whole Lotta Love, Led Zeppelin 22. Sabbath Bloody Sabbath, Black Sabbath 23. Mr. Crowley, Ozzy Osbourne 24. Peace Sells, Megadeth 25. Seek and Destroy, Metallica

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446 comments sorted by best / new / date

    naw2
    There's no point being all Hipster about it cause to be honest more people like them and see the songs as iconic so really I have no complaints even if I don't agree with the lists.
    Gexzilla
    I somewhat like this list. MOP #1 - good, not a single screaming/growling/another excuse for being unable to sing band - very good.
    DejaSenti
    So let's all just post our favourite song at the moment and ask why it didn't make it to the list. They said it's a Top 50 list, and it really is a Top 50 list, because those songs are all influential, well known and perceived by most as "Metal".
    Imptheshrimp
    Eh, I'm not gonna make a stupid comment on how I disagree with this list or what it really should be titled or whatever. However I feel I must bring up that people don't give prog rock NEARLY enough credit when it comes to founding heavy metal. I think my #1 metal song might be 21st Century Schizoid Man.
    captainperoxide
    Would you guys stop with all the "oh god, overrated, overrated" bullshit? The songs have been given so much attention exactly for the reason they're on this list, because they're the best. Yes, when you hear a lot of a song, it loses some of its brilliance, because you've heard it so much, it's overplayed, we get that. But that doesn't objectively make it a worse song. So would you please all stop being such pretentious, arrogant douchebags and just appreciate the recognition of good songs?
    HankMcCoy22
    captainperoxide wrote: Would you guys stop with all the "oh god, overrated, overrated" bullshit? The songs have been given so much attention exactly for the reason they're on this list, because they're the best. Yes, when you hear a lot of a song, it loses some of its brilliance, because you've heard it so much, it's overplayed, we get that. But that doesn't objectively make it a worse song. So would you please all stop being such pretentious, arrogant douchebags and just appreciate the recognition of good songs?
    I agree with this guy! Well said.
    postmortem2006
    This list an extremely predictable joke if you ask me. Great to see Ace of Spades in there, but the band HAS done other songs y'know?
    CronoMagus
    I actually think Gibson's list is pretty solid. The fans I agree with less actually p
    GenerationKILL
    HazeSpace wrote: More a top 50 FAMOUS metal songs...
    You're an idiot. The second list was voted on by the public, of course the songs were bound to be well known. Sorry your favorite metal song by the local band down the street didn't make the cut next to Iron Maiden. You moron.
    ledzepmike
    KataklysmDeth wrote: How is hanger 18 higher than fade to black....
    because Its better!!!!
    Wolfinator-x
    May I be the first to say... I'm so glad no death metal appears on those lists (at least I didn't see any). I don't LIKE death metal, it's not worthy of the true bluesy "heredity" of Tony Iommi's licks and the early traditional and NWOBH metal music. Blues, unlike most people know, is an important part of true metal.
    andyscoot
    CFH-For-Life wrote: My Top Ten Metal Songs Of All Time: 1.Cowboys From Hell - Pantera 2.Walk With Me In Hell - Lamb Of God 3.Pull Harder On The Strings Of Your Martyr - Trivium 4.Angel Of Death - Slayer 5.Clenching The Fists Of Dissent - Machine Head 6.Selkies: The Endless Obsession - BTBAM 7.Slipknot - Sic 8.Hit The Lights - Metallica 9.To The Threshhold - Hatebreed 10.Endless Sacrifice - Dream Theater And I feel like my list is 10000 times better than the lists up there and i only put ten bands with ten songs, not 10 songs, 3 different bands.
    Shite list.
    hconn
    Did anyone else notice that there was no Anthrax on here? Why are they in the big four?
    fallen.im
    Fajita15 wrote: All right all you guys bitching about this, there is nothing wrong with this list. Metal is a term that means something different every ten years. In the 70's, Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath were heavy metal. In the 80's, Metallica and Iron Maiden were heavy metal. In the 90's, Alice in Chains and KoRn were heavy metal. In the 00's, Slipknot and Disturbed are heavy metal. The genre evolves, to the point that what is metal now was unheard of back in the day, and vice versa. Also, I personally find it harder to appreciate anyone who constantly screams their music. It removes a whole element that a song should have, and that is a true melody, or even just a meaning in lyrics. I love bands like Bullet for my Valentine, Trivium, Avenged Sevenfold, Lamb of God, etc. but none of what they have ever done stands up to the art that Metallica wrought in their first five albums. Powerful, but under control. Extreme, but articulate. Metallica polished off the final look of what metal is today, and that is why Master of Puppets is at the top of this list. 'Nuff said.
    Well said... ^_^ .\m/
    Metal\m/forever
    I completely agree with this List. These songs are all really good songs. I don't give a **** how "Over-played" a song is, these songs are classic and amazing, better then anything ever written these days.
    Wakisazhi
    Decent lists, though a bit mind boggling as to why Enter Sandman is higher on the reader list. Generally with these things its the other way around. Also needs more Tornado of Souls.
    burnsz82
    Set-Abominae wrote: We know you think this list sucks, we know your list would be way better, we know your favorite band was left off, now can we avoid those comments?
    We also know that people like you try to quiet those who have opinions. I didn't make the list, if I don't agree with something I will say so... On a different note, this list is way too long and there's a lot wrong with it, so there.
    craig1888
    I know it can be difficult to place bands exactly into one genre but really, how many of these could really be considered metal at all? Most of it is just flat out rock.
    Set-Abominae
    We know you think this list sucks, we know your list would be way better, we know your favorite band was left off, now can we avoid those comments?
    Wolfinator-x
    Rtard_GWARRIOR wrote: Seem's people really don't like NWBHM These day's. Such a shame.
    I agree. I don't like modern metal at all. Removing the bluesy aspect of metal is like removing the boobs off a chick.
    vinnym86
    They threw Tool in that list just to watch you internet freaks bitch about it. This list sucks. "Mr. Crowley" by Ozzy takes up spot #1-3.
    Wolfinator-x
    CFH-For-Life wrote: Wow because those weren't ignorant statements at all right? You guys clearly havent heard a lot of good metal then. Two bands come to mind when I think Blues and Metal, Pantera and Lamb Of God. You listen to them and tell me there aren't blues roots in there.
    Pantera isn't Death Metal (non-coincidentally, they're good). However Lamb Of God suck.
    Band_2010
    wtf!!!!! such list !!! however i think eminem and 50cent are metal heads 2 so they must be in the list
    queenslander47
    Lists always cause shitstorms in the comments section. No way to make anybody happy. Master of Puppets definitely deserves number 1 in my humble opinion.
    ithinkiplaybass
    my only beef is that twisted sister was so low. I mean come on. it was beaten by Breaking the law. That makes me cry inside
    TheNewWorldMan
    RapeFace McGee wrote: Guns N' Roses AC/DC Rainbow Van Halen Def Leppard Alice in Chains KISS Twisted Sister Tool Led Zeppelin are not metal bands. take those away and the lis looks more like this: metallica black sabbath black sabbath iron maiden metallica judas priest black sabbath iron maiden iron maiden
    how bout none of the bands you listed and add bands like: As Blood Runs Black The Acacia Strain The Devil Wears Prada For the Fallen Dreams Parkway Drive.....just to name a few. I would say this is more of a classic metal list times changed lets update our lists and stop rehashing them. But don't get me wrong I love the classics but its 2011 not the 70s and 80s anymore.
    ~DrEaM ThEaTeR~
    no dream theater? seriously? I don't even listen to them very often anymore (old user name lol) but they DEFINITELY have some songs that could/should be on a list like this.