The Best Hard Rock Bands/Artists

71k votes 5.8k voters 209k views 183 items tags f p @

List Criteria: Only hard rock artists. Pure metal bands like Sabbath, Maiden, Priest or punk bands like Pistols, Ramones belong on other lists

Hard rock is a genre that started with bands like Cream, Mountain, Steppenwolf, and Grand Funk in the late 1960s and early 1970s, and filled stadiums in the 1970s and into the 1980s. Hard rock bands are rooted in garage rock, blues rock and psychedelic rock and over time, hard rock has come to include elements of post-punk. That said, some of the greatest bands of all time are hard rock bands. Featuring iconic guitar solos, aggressive music and heavy drumming, top hard rock bands remain some of the most beloved bands in history and their songs continue to be played on radio today.

So, what are the best hard rock bands? Any top 100 list of hard rock bands has to include the likes of Led Zeppelin, Van Halen, AC/DC, Queen, Aerosmith, Deep Purple and Guns N Roses. These bands are considered among the best in hard rock and with good reason. They continue to endure and their songs hold up - even as new hard rock songs fight for space on radio waves. In the cases of the hard rock bands that have retired or long broken up, they continue to have fans, which is a testament to their staying power.

That said, it's up to you to determine what are the best hard rock bands. If you like hard rock and noticed that someone is missing from this list of hard rock bands, feel free to add them. This list answers the questions "who are the best hard rock bands of all time?" and "who is the greatest hard rock musician ever?" If you know enough about the genre, please vote based on the quality of the band's music instead of just voting for the most popular hard rock bands that you might've heard of.
Collection Photo:  via wikimedia
  • 36 ReRanks
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  1. 1
    + 1,641
    - 567

    the people's #1 & most listed
    Blues-rock, Classic rock, Rock music

    ;
  2. 2
    + 1,843
    - 581


    Blues-rock, Boogie rock, Rock music

    ;
  3. 3
    + 985
    - 526


    Blues-rock, Classic rock, Heavy metal

    ;
  4. 4
    + 1,089
    - 632


    Thrash metal, Rock music, Heavy metal

    ;
  5. 5
    + 1,078
    - 643


    Pop music, Rock music, Heavy metal

    ;
  6. 6
    + 893
    - 522


    Glam metal, Blues-rock, Rock music

    ;
  7. 7
    + 1,303
    - 521

    ranked low on reranks
    Glam metal, Blues-rock, Rock music

    ;
  8. 8
    + 939
    - 445


    Glam metal, Rock music, Heavy metal

    ;
  9. 9
    + 647
    - 274

    added by DukeArcher
    Blues-rock, Rock music, Experimental rock

    ;
  10. 10
    + 671
    - 473


    Progressive metal, Rock music, Heavy metal

    ;
  11. 11
    + 594
    - 434

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Glam metal, Experimental rock, Shock rock

    ;
  12. 12
    + 504
    - 217

    ranked low on reranks & added by Bella70
    Glam metal, Heavy metal, Hard rock

    ;
  13. 13
    + 773
    - 343

    ranked low on reranks
    Doom metal, Glam metal, Blues-rock

    ;
  14. 14
    + 641
    - 471


    Glam metal, Rock music, Heavy metal

    ;
  15. 15
    + 627
    - 451


    Glam metal, Rock music, Heavy metal

    ;
  16. 16
    + 519
    - 285

    added by HillaryBeckmanHarvey
    New Wave of British Heavy Metal, Thrash metal, Rock music

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  17. 17
    + 378
    - 369


    Classic rock, Rock music, Progressive rock

    ;
  18. 18
    + 555
    - 391


    Blues-rock, Boogie rock, Rock music

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  19. 19
    + 524
    - 402


    Rock music, Grunge, Heavy metal

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  20. 20
    + 407
    - 304


    Rock music, Heavy metal, Stoner rock

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  21. 21
    + 389
    - 309


    Blues-rock, Classic rock, Rock music

    ;
  22. 22
    + 490
    - 464


    Glam metal, Blues-rock, Rock music

    ;
  23. 23
    + 364
    - 350


    Rock music, Grunge, Heavy metal

    ;
  24. 24
    + 462
    - 303


    Blues-rock, Progressive metal, Power metal

    ;
  25. 25
    + 448
    - 334


    Glam metal, Blues-rock, Rock music

    ;
  26. 26
    + 484
    - 325

    ranked low on reranks
    Glam metal, Rock music, Heavy metal

    ;
  27. 27
    + 375
    - 326


    Post-metal, Metal, Progressive metal

    ;
  28. 28
    + 399
    - 277


    Glam metal, Thrash metal, Rock music

    ;
  29. 29
    + 405
    - 355


    Crossover thrash, Nu metal, Political hip hop

    ;
  30. 30
    + 263
    - 308


    Rock music, Punk rock, Hard rock

    ;
  31. 31
    + 284
    - 297

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Blues-rock, Rock music, Heavy metal

    ;
  32. 32
    + 233
    - 263


    Heartland rock, Rock music, Progressive rock

    ;
  33. 33
    + 340
    - 216

    ranked low on reranks & added by HillaryBeckmanHarvey
    Glam metal, Thrash metal, Groove metal

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  34. 34
    + 275
    - 295


    Rock music, Grunge, Neo-psychedelia

    ;
  35. 35
    + 282
    - 356


    Nu metal, Groove metal, Rock music

    ;
  36. 36
    + 260
    - 278


    Doom metal, Glam metal, Rock music

    ;
  37. 37
    + 224
    - 296

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Glam metal, Blues-rock, Rock music

    ;
  38. 38
    + 237
    - 193

    ranked low on reranks & added by DukeArcher
    Pop punk, Rock music, Classic Punk

    ;
  39. 39
    + 159
    - 221

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    New Wave, Rock music, Experimental rock

    ;
  40. 40
    + 175
    - 235


    Progressive metal, Rock music, Heavy metal

    ;
  41. 41
    + 246
    - 240


    Blues-rock, Rock music, Space rock

    ;
  42. 42
    + 307
    - 391


    Nu metal, Thrash metal, Groove metal

    ;
  43. 43
    + 234
    - 418

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Glam metal, Industrial metal, Rock music

    ;
  44. 44
    + 275
    - 338


    Dubstep, Nu metal, Industrial metal

    ;
  45. 45
    + 242
    - 349

    added by HillaryBeckmanHarvey
    Rock music, Gothic metal, Alternative rock

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  46. 46
    + 220
    - 222


    Gothic rock, Rock music, Heavy metal

    ;
  47. 47
    + 324
    - 273


    Glam metal, Thrash metal, Rock music

    ;
  48. 48
    + 204
    - 285


    Glam metal, Rock music, Heavy metal

    ;
  49. 49
    + 253
    - 320


    Glam metal, Blues-rock, Rock music

    ;
  50. 50
    + 166
    - 188

    added by DukeArcher
    Rock music, Anarcho-punk, Punk rock

    ;
184 +

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