Top 10 Best Death Metal Bands

Death metal is one of the most under-appreciated music scenes in the world, you’ll find technical excellence and precise playing galore if you dare to put your toes into the murky waters of death.

And to help you out, we’ve rounded up the best death metal bands ever for you. 


Death

Best Death Metal Bands

Perhaps not the first death metal band, but certainly the band after which the whole scene was named, Death remains a legendary act. 

Chuck Schuldiner’s, the lead singer, untimely demise means they’re not still recording today, sadly, but listen to Leprosy, Spiritual Healing or Human and you’ll be blown away. 

Get bonus points for playing these albums on your motorcycle speakers!


Cannibal Corpse

Cannibal Corpse

You can’t have a best of death metal list without the scene’s biggest selling act and that’s Cannibal Corpse.

You’ll either love their juvenile pornogore approach to music or hate it. We like Eaten Back To Life and The Bleeding best, where the music is at the fore and the lyrics are slightly less  in your face. 


Morbid Angel

Morbid Angel

Morbid Angel was born out of the Morrisound era of death metal and we still can’t get over how good Altars of Madness and Blessed are the Sick are today, almost 30 years after their release.

They’re still going strong too, though there are a few misses in their more recent catalogue. 


Carcass

Carcass

The UK’s Carcass are still touring and while Heartwork was written off at the time of its release, it’s now considered by many to be their best work.

However, if you like a bit of wordy metal then you should also check out Necroticism: Descanting the Insalubrious because it shreds. 


Entombed

Entombed

It’s become trendy to discount Entombed after their Left Hand Path and Clandestine era and these two albums are mighty, indeed.

But it’s 1993’s Wolverine Blues that we keep coming back to, it’s a groovy, relentless record that leaves us hoarse as we scream along to “Out of Hand.”


Nile

Nile

If you want your music to educate you, then look no further than Nile. These guys are all professional Egyptologists and their music is all about ancient Egypt!

You can’t go wrong with Black Seeds of Vengeance or 2019’s Vile Nilotic Rites, this is technical death metal at its finest. 


Immolation

Immolation

Immolation was considered an also-ran when their debut Dawn of Possession came out (though for those of us who caught them on tour that year, we knew this was not the case). 

But the band has completely come into its own over the last 3 decades and they’re now one of the biggest names on the scene, don’t miss out on 2017’s Atonement


Vader

Vader

Poland’s Vader has become a huge presence in the death metal scene and who wouldn’t love a band named after a Star Wars villian? 

Their back catalogue is huge but give De Profundis a whirl before you check out Solitude in Madness from last year. 


Opeth

Opeth

I hesitate to include Opeth on this list as their current sound is closer to Pink Floyd than Obituary but there’s no doubting that this mega-group (and its spin-off Arch Enemy) had a huge influence on death metal.

You can’t go wrong with the blistering insanity of My Arms, Your Hearse


Dark Tranquility

Dark Tranquility

And if you don’t like anything you’ve heard from above, you might want to give Gothenburg’s Dark Tranquility a go, as this is melodic death metal and, perhaps, the best gateway to death metal that there is.

Projector is my favorite album of all time and they’re my favorite live act too, you’ll also want to check out 2020’s Moment, it’s great. 


Final Thoughts On The Best Death Metal Bands

We like to kick back and listen to these bands on awesome bone conduction headphones (because what could be more metal than that?) and while you might need to give these artists repeated listens before you “get” them, once you do, you’ll be blasting the tunes out too!

If you want to learn more about Death Metal, you could always read Choosing Death which is on our best ever music books list, it’s the definitive guide to the scene. 

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