Top 10 Best Metal Vocalists


August 2, 2015 - Don't agree with the list? Vote for an existing item you think should be ranked higher or if you are a logged in, add a new item for others to vote on or create your own version of this list.

The Top Ten

SU-METAL - Babymetal
For her age she has an unbelievable voice which will only improve over time and more training.
Definitely needs to be on this list if we are being fair here. Amazing vocalist.
Well you gotta admit, She HAS potential. Though she may be young, her voice gets you. Its not the type of voice that gives you a feeling that you are being brought to a place filled with the magic of the song, but more like, the feeling of familiarity... it feels like she is standing beside you, looks at you, grabs your arm and says "Lets have fun! ". Her voice is sincere and filled with the amount of fun she is having on stage. You can sense her... awe (can't get the right word)... in it.
[Newest]She is not called the Queen for nothing. Great range. Her soul is in her voice.

2Bruce Dickinson - Iron Maiden
The legendary vocalist: Bruce Dickinson. Now in his mid-50's and he can still hit those incredible notes in almost every gig he plays. In many of his songs in Iron Maiden, Dickinson has showed his "scream" (most famously in Run to the Hills and Infinite Dreams) which is one of the most impressive vocal displays in metal.
Dickinson's the best of this group, but too take this list more seriously, besides Dickinson, and Dio. Where is Robert Plant, Rob Halford, or Axl Rose?. I may have changed my choice if you had included them in the discussion. They are legends and Household names. Dickinson Mr. Air Raid Siren gets the nod here!.
Bruce Dickinson is the Greatest lead singer in the world his range I unbeatable. He is a great guy friends with major people is a singer, musician, songwriter, pilot, fencer, broadcaster, author, actor, marketing director, and certified badass and going to defeat cancer and send cancer to purgatory to deal with Eddie. Up The Irons
[Newest]Great band but not great vocals

3Ronnie James Dio - Dio
Seeing Dio and Rob Halford not in the top 5 makes this list a complete joke. Dio is one of the greatest metal vocalists in music and has one of the most powerful and phenomenal voices of all time.
"sing me a song your a singer" is the best opening line ever in a song mainly because Dio's voice makes it sound so much better.


Ronnie james dio is the best. Rest in peace ronnie james dio. You are the best. Because your sound is wonderful. You will never die. And metal will never die!
[Newest]Listen to his range on Stargazer amazing! For that performance he should be #1

4Rob Halford - Judas Priest
It's not even close. come on. Halford is off the charts, then when you get to the charts, Dickinson is next.
Just hear the difference between "Beyond the Realms of Death" and then "Painkiller".
Halford can sing with an extraordinarily clean voice, but can scream like no one else can do. He helped create metal, influenced lots of important singers and surely knows how to use his 4 octaves (though he is best at hitting high-pitched notes).
He truly deserves to be #1.
Rob is a very operamatic high active vocalist whom can scale better than anybody bar Freddy mercury his idol.. I rest my case, if it wasn't for priest n rob you wouldn't even have maiden n Dickinson... halford is the greatest! "! "
[Newest]Get real no one in metal is even close to rob as a vocalist

5Roy Khan
Outside all the typical vocalist that people are listing on here... Corey Taylor, Matt tuck or Matt Shadows... Roy Khan can actually sing. He does not have a typical or weak singing voice... Its not poppy nor is it something that would be considered likeable by the mainstream community but he is by far one of the most unique and incredible voices that has ever been heard by human ears. His range is absolutely astounding, the only metal vocalist I've heard in the 2 decades of my listening to metal that can even top Roy is Devin Townsend. He also has a great control over his tone giving him an ability to make something sound beautiful, haunting, powerful... And so much more. He is more than just a "Metal vocalist" he is an artist, painting portraits with each note. He also is an outstanding live performer, he is charismatic, energetic when he needs to and subtle when its called for and using that he has the best stage presence imaginable. The man deserves so much respect and is without a doubt the top vocalist in metal history.
A man with a great great heart. A man with an extraordinary voice full of emotion. A man almost destroyed by his own creation. Always went on 200%. Brilliant work with vocal melodies, dynamics, harmonies, emotions, lyrics... He made every performance and recording so organic and mindblowing. Pure magic. People usually don't talk about this but I think that he's actually one of the greatest story tellers in metal genre. Listening to that guy and watching him perform is a real adventure. Roy Khan definitely deserves to be on a better position.
I truly believe he is one of the few singers that made music something more than just melodies and notes. He added emotions and magic.

His Kamelot where one of the best bands ever existed, with a unique charm. Karma and The Black Halo are simply two of the greatest albums ever made.
[Newest]How can an Asian girl be on the top
More comments about Roy Khan

6James Hetfield - Metallica
How come James is #1 in best metal/rock voices and in the best metal band of all time but he is #5 in metal voices? Still Bruce is second in my opinion still he has a extremely EPIC METAL voice but James is the best.
You cannot beat James' metal vocal ability at seattle 1989. It was amazing!
A big joke hetfield is at no 6... All the voters are blind.. Hetfield can sing hard medium and soft both like hard in creeping death, master of puppets.. Medium in ride welcome home, enter sandman and slow in unforgiven 2, nothing else matter.. He is best live performer... Metallica is best band of the world and they are god of metal... Hetfield deserve 1st position in this list... He is best vocalist + rhythm guitarist and member of Metallica.. Name of Metallica is enough...
[Newest]Metallica is the best he should be #1.

7Corey Taylor - Slipknot
His voice just raise up my spirit!


Corey's scream is as close as you can get without actually yelling and ruining your voice. Given how angry slipknot's music is, listening makes for a very immersive experience. You feel the genuine rage that the band feels, especially on Iowa. But what he is less known for, and underappreciated for, is his expressive singing. He has a distinct voice, one of the most distinct ever--very easy to pick out. He doesn't have a great range, but he sure knows how to use what he has. he sings with a lot of power.
At least he has to be in the top 5. He's the best screamer their is.
Just listen to psychosocial, wherein lies continue, liberate for his highs and snuff, skin ticket, purity for his lows. He is AWESOME
[Newest]He has the second largest vocal range of any singer, he can go from screaming to perfect chordal singing shown in psychosocial.

8Ozzy Osbourne - Black Sabbath
Is this the best vocalist list or our personal favourite vocalist list? When ozzy sings even bats cry
Ozzy is awesome. By the way Ronnie James Dio should be on this list to
"The Godfather of Heavy Metal", "The Prince of Darkness" OZZY OSBOURNE!
He deserves to be up there on top!
He's way more talented than Bruce and any day way way WAY better than Corey Taylor
[Newest]Ozzy should be at least 3!

9M. Shadows - Avenged Sevenfold
Great vocalist - good range, and great variation with both softer songs (like Seize The Day, So Far Away, and my personal favourite Victim) and heavier songs (like Nightmare, Critical Acclaim and Welcome To The Family).
M Shadows in my opinion should be at least 3. He has a powerful voice and uses it in the way he should use it! On hail to the king album his vocals are just amazing. It's not like any other metal singer. This is Raw power. If the Rev was still here and he sand on Hail to the king, he would be number 1!
Really unique voice. Amazing control and range coupled with an ability to incorporate heavy raspy growl for metal stompers or extremely clean and emotive vocals for ballads with perfect execution at all time.
[Newest]Shadow should be top 1-3

10Michael Kiske - Helloween
Matt Shadows? Corey? Who are they next to the great master Kiske? He is easily one of the best vocalists out there! Even Deris (who is an amazing vocalist as well) who entered in his place has some difficulties into singing the other vocalist songs. Just try to achieve the high noted of Eagle Fly Free, Halloween and a Tale That Wasn't Right, then you'll see what a real vocal master is.
Some decent picks on here, but then a lot that are just vocalists in popular mainstream bands that aren't actually that talented. At least Bruce Dickinson is around where he should be. The problem with Kiske is that he's not actually done much with metal since Helloween. Although you should listen to Ultrasonic's Light of Dawn album. His voice has aged better than most as though he's been in suspended animation all of this time.
Who doesn't know Michael Kiske, and if you don't you have been under a very large rock for the last 30 years, Kiske is a metal god with a range that no one can reach, those high notes he gets out of his golden throat are just godlike

The Contenders

11Geoff Tate - Queensryche
No metal vocalist could do what Tate did. Geoff infused Operatic vocals with theatrical emotion and combined them with power, range and melodic maturity.
His 4 Octave vocal range was on Full display in the EP and followed into their debut full fledged album 'The Warning' with powerful vocals on the title track, fantastic emotion on songs like'Child of Fire'and 'Road to Madness' to the iconic and instant classic 'Take Hold of the Flame' No vocalist in hard rock or metal has had the ability to change vocals like Geoff Tate did. Many singers in yesterdays and todays metal scene claim Tate as their main influence and rightfully so, no one did it better.
I think Tate was the greatest ever in his prime. My top five are in order are Tate, Dio, Dickinson, Halford, and Anselmo.
He was one of the best in his prime the entire operation mindcrime was phenomenal my top 3 in no particular order is Rob Halford Bruce Dickenson Geoff Tate
[Newest]Range, delivery, perfection. #1 in my opinion. There are other greats, but Tate is, as others have noted: phenomenal.

12Phil Anselmo - Pantera
Anselmo has a soulful singing voice yet devastating rage packed into one voice
Why the hell is Ozzy Osbourne on 9, while Phil Anselmo is on 13? He's better than everybody on the list!
Hey.. We talk about metal here! Why Ian Gillan, Axl Rose and other rock/hard rock vocalist was on the list?
Anselmo is the best, his voice is so perfect for pantera's music.. And that's what metal is..
Ian Gillan IS a metal singer - too underrated though. Besides his metal songs with Deep Purple, he recorded the heaviest Black Sabbath album (1983).

Axl Rose, Bon Scott, etc are not metal.


If phil didn't exist = NO SLIPKNOT

13James Labrie - Dream Theater
He's not as good as Ozzy, Bruce, Halford, or Dio, but definitely is a good one, with loads of talent. Besides, his vocal cords got messed up in 1994, after a food poisoning incident, and if you listen to A Change of Seasons, he could still hit the high notes, which to me was incredible considering how bad they were torn up.

Again, doesn't deserve the top spot, but should be in the top 10
Maybe not the best, but a good one
This guy desereves at least no.10... His voice is a high pitched voice... Tye only singer that can go all the way to the F#...
High pitches don't make one a good singer, jesus... His voice is flat, squeaky and soulless, one of the most overrated singer in my opinion

14Brian Johnson - AC/DC
He is not a metal singer bro


AC/DC need I say more

15Serj Tankian - System of a Down
I was gonna vote for Roy Khan, because he is incredible, but my loyalties will always be to Serj Tankian. System of a Down is my favorite band since I was 10 years old. Serj's has this incredible range of style and emotion. You get all these different kinds of songs like Question or Spiders or even crazy ones like Vicinity of Obscenity. And his solo work is amazing too. The big sound of Elect the Dead or the symphonic Imperfect Harmonies or the sorta punk rock Harakiri. Serj is an amazing talent.
Serj is the best!
Immensely powerful and most importantly, diverse voice. He's even doing Opera now. Get me one Metal singer who does the same.
[Newest]He has unique and beautiful voice

16Matt Barlow - Iced Earth
Whilst probably not THE best, he is undoubtedly one of them. His phenomenal voice has soared into the highest reaches of sound and rumbled in the lowest depths. The masculine thickness of his voice also allows for him to be soft while still menacing and strong. His voice is a one of a kind, and it's a damn shame he doesn't get more recognition.
THE voice of ICED EARTH. Killer growls, clean and hight pitched vocals. "Something Wicked This Way Comes", "Horrow Show" and "Immortal" albums are a proof of what is he made of: pure metal and a class A+ quality voice.

Barlow, a perfect mixture between Hetfield, Anselmo, Dickinson and Halford, at his best.
Anything to say? A god among humans, with a great voice tune, power and feeling, and a awesome presence on stages, he knows how to conquer the World!

17Matt Heafy - Trivium
He was so good at ascendancy era. He could sing very high pitch such as pull harder, dying in your arms, declaration, departure. I like him when he sang high.
His solos are unbelievable and the new vocals are pretty but he should scream
Loved him when he sang normal but I wish he could scream with the new vocals
[Newest]He should like the way he sang at the crusade

18Maynard James Keenan - Tool
He always seems to pour deep emotion into his songs, which to me seems to be one of the determining factors of a good singer. Pure talent and singing range is good, but to to have that and be able to put for that emotion is something else.
Who is that Su-Metal person at the top of the list? Anyways, Maynard knows how to sing and how to sing GOOD. Great emotion, great screaming, great everything. He should at least be in the top 5.


Can't believe this guy isn't at least in the top 10, seeing him all the way down here makes me sad
[Newest]Why is Su-Metal above people like Kahn, and Keenan?

19Russell Allen - Symphony X
Debatably the best in the genre and my personal favorite, Russell has a great range of 4+ octaves, an unreal amount of vocal control, an amazing amount of power, a naturally pleasant and soothing vocal tone and a real passion for what he does.

Here is a quote from progressive metal genius Arjen Lucassen on Russell Allen's ability as a vocalist:
"Russell has a very powerful and versatile voice, and on top of that he is a great musician and performer. Russell was one of the few singers with whom I didn't need to be present during recording, but when on the phone he let me hear the parts he had sung, my eyes filled with tears. Russell thought I was joking, but I was truly moved! At the moment Russell is one of the best singers in the world. And he proved that during the Star One tour."

Definitely the best thing to happen to Michael Romeo and the rest of Symphony X and definitely deserving of a better place on this list.
Definitely one of the best metal vocalists of our times, both in Symphony X and in all his other side projects! He deserves a much better position than this!
Russel Allen! Symphony X stands out as one of the Metal greats. There are few bands that can combine technical ability and introspective emotions.
[Newest]This shows how underrated this amazing singer is... He should be at least in the top 10 or 5

20Ivan Moody - Five Finger Death Punch
If corey taylor is number 7, Ivan moody should at least 8 because he sounds just like him in my opinion.
Ivan's got a great voice, and he sounds great while soft too.


Ivan's voice is being used in my new product, the orgasmatron

Comments About This List

Featured Lists
Popular Lists
New Lists

Top Remixes of This List






see more...

Posts About This List

List Info

This list was created 5 years, 31 days ago and has been voted on over 7,000 times. This top ten list contains 171 items, has been remixed 48 times.

Updated Saturday, August 01, 2015

List Error Reporting

See an item on this list that's misspelled, duplicated, or doesn't belong? Let us know. Click here to report the error.