Top Ten Best Scottish Bands


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The Top Ten

The greatest band who promote a dying language and took it to the world stage. You don't need to have gaelic to understand runrig songs. They've been going 41 years and still going strong. Amazing musicians and self penned songs that will go down in Scottish folklore. True legends of Scottish music
Is this a joke that Runrig was not included in the list. Runrig is Scotland and they have been around for 40 Years.
They are simply wonderful. Deserve to be #1. I am an American who found them recently and can't believe I have missed them in the past. Their music inspires, their lyrics speak to you.
[Newest]Love this band not my #1 for that is Big Country. However, had it not been my love for Big Country I would never have found this fabulous band. I once was asked what my dream concert would be to see. I said, Logan to open for Runrig & Runrig to open for Big Country. Now that would be the ultimate.

2Big Country
Big Country has been and will always be my favorite band of all time. American lost out not knowing more from them then what the VH1 dubs as a One hit wonder. Luckily I loved this band enough to follow to date and have witnessed many great tracks from them. I was so stoked when Mike Peters from the Alarm took on the vocals for Stuart. Then when Derek Forbes took over bass for Tony Butler I was happy with the match. I do miss my Tony & of course the Man who was just a Man Stuart Adamson. Can't help liking the direction the band has taken their music and are evolving. I'm just very happy that Bruce Watson & Mark Brzezicki are still remainin. Many do not know this but Mark Brzezicki played with the Cult for a short time. Bruce played in the Skids a band in which Stuart also played in. Bruce also played in a band called Fish. Yes I did say Big Country is my all time favorite band.
Big Country was and will always be the quintessential Scottish band. Who┬'s Runrig? Ever wondered how Runrig┬'s "Skye" or "Protect & Survive" would have sounded without because┬'s "The Crossing"?
Simple Minds Should Be Number 1 And Big Country Should Be Number 2 And Both Should Be Miles a Head So Nobody Can Catch them the rest of the bands are rubbish apart from the proclaimers
[Newest]Simply the best rock band ever, period. Adamson was a genius songwriter and much underrated. Inspiring lyrics, thought provoking and poignant.

3Simple Minds
It's Simple! Minds. Love Runrig! BUT. Simple Minds went past the great Scottish tradition and put the best of the west into the great Scottish tradition. They injected Lou Reed and the Doors into their Scottish veins and the result kicks ass! Great rock music with a Scottish touch. These guys knew the musical landscape and added a Scottish touch that I truly value. Thank you Glasgow buddies!
Talented, musical, powerful, melodic, atmospheric & charismatic. Taught U2 all they know about captivating stadium fans as well as reaching indivduals. From their early raw sound to their current material, they have never failed to deliver. Have a re-listen to Live in the City of Light... By FAR the best Scottish band. Period. (Although there have been many other fantastic bands from our wee nation).
Loved their early stuff but also 'the stadium years' which were criminally underrated.
[Newest]Simple the best rock band from Scotland. The band of the eighties

4Biffy Clyro
Amazing live, put on such a good show! Always have an amazing atmosphere when playing and when you meet the guys, they're always so nice! So friendly to their fans, best Scottish band around!
Superior musicianship and thoughtful lyrics really do make Biffy Clyro stand out as one of Scotland's greatest bands.
Franz Ferdinand have nothing on Biffy Clyro.
Just amazing I saw them live in 2007 and I've been begging since to see them again. Just their whole style of playing is amazing defiantly deserve to be at the top good call :P
[Newest]Best Scottish alternative rock band of recent times

5Franz Ferdinand
Not just my favourite Scottish band, but my favourite band of all time. They have released 3 albums all of which were masterpieces, and the 4th is set to follow suit. These guys don't just play rock music they saved it, deserving of the title of "The Archdukes of Rock"
My All time Favorite band from the UK.
I've first heard them from my brother and haven't hated a single song from them yet.
I recommend this band to all who like alternative and Rock.
Franz Ferdinand completely changed my life. Every single song on every single album is just spectacular. I highly recommend this band to any Rock lovers!

6Belle and Sebastian
THE most underrated band ever. No competition. So many great songs. Stuart Murdoch is a genius, there's no other way about it. Simply incredibly. And bloody good live.
Agreed; severely underrated. and the more music I listen to the more I become convinced of this. stuart murdoch is the one of the two great writers of the English language, the other being Virginia woolf.
How Belle ^^ Sebastian are as unknown as they are is beyond me. Quite easily the most underrated band of our time. One day, people are going to look back and see how genuis this band actually was. Stuart Murdoch is one of the greatest singer singwriters off all-time. Period..

7The Jesus and Mary Chain
JMC is absolutely the best Scottish band ever!! I love most of the rest on the list but JMC is the only one that help define who I am.
It's a rare trick to uphold the sacred tenets of rock & roll while simultaneously tearing them down. The mary Chain rock!
Discordant, dissonant & riotous. One of the best Scottish bands ever. Forget Biffy Clyro, man.
[Newest]Underrated. They still sound amazing decades later.

They have only been around for 45+ years, 22 studio albums... Scottish Rock Pioneers!... Should be Number 1 for sure!
Very under rated band. My opinion one of the best bans ever.
Best Rock band ever and still going strong

9The Sensational Alex Harvey Band
If you think you are a rock'n'roll expert, listen "Boston tea party" and see. Very appropriate for the times being. Great underrated Scottish band.
Listen to Delilah.
Awesome band

10The Proclaimers
"I would walk 500 miles and I would walk 500 more! " These guys are just so awesome. Definitely one of the best Scottish bands! I love their accent and just how awesome they make the simple lyrics sound.
Love this band. I am American and adore their Scottish accent. The music and lyrics are always great.
clearly and easily the most talented to come from Scotland, if not the entire world.
[Newest]Oh come on feel good foot tapping sing along music

The Contenders

11Deacon Blue
Clearly should be in at least the top 3 if not number 1, been around for over 25 years and sell out tour after tour. As good as some of the bands listed in the top 10 here are, most of them have sold but a fraction of the tickets Deacon Blue have. To put the likes of Belle and Sebastion above them is pure snobbery.
Not only because of their sales but due to the quality of their music and lyrics and the powerful live acts, deacon Blue should be (at least) in TOP 5 of scottish bands.
For me, the best live band... Ever. Deacon Blue have managed to remain my favourite band since I first came across them in '89! And they're still going strong.
[Newest]Lets face it we all know some of their stuff

Incredible band, definitely my favorite. Each song is unique and triggers different emotions, and so damn creative. Doesn't hurt that Fran Healy has a voice of an angel alongside dear Saint Andrew!
Only recently started listening to Travis, but they are an absolutely amazing band. Now my favourite artist! Their songs are just magical.
Why the hell are travis at #10? Only Scottish band to have a record which is within 25 of the best selling UK albums of all time! No offense to the View but have they even sold 1 million records in total? While the Man Who has well and truly passed 6 million.
[Newest]My best friend just recently introduced me to their tunes, I just think they should definitely be ranked higher than #12! Theirs songs and lyrics are awesome!

13Paolo Nutini and the Vipers
The best voice to come out of Scotland! I love Paolo Nutini, I could sit and listen to him forever. His lyrics are amazing and he always sings with a touch of pain in his voice. Top guy.
So in love with this man and his voice! Bought EVERY album!
Paolo Nutini amazing guy & his lyrics are serious! Amazzing xx

14The View
They have already bagged much of the ingenuity of great pop rock bands and I predict The View will create a few new moves

15The Fratellis
Great music! I love The fratellis. It's a pity they split with such a short and promising career
"The Fratellis was my first introduction to scottish bands, and so far, the best"
Although 1 album wonders their first album was a wonder.

16The Exploited
Cannot imagine my teen years without Exploited records!

17Primal Scream
Primal Scream are The Rolling Stones of Scotland - hands down!

18The Corries
Best folk group ever.
I like their songs.


20Sparrow and the Workshop

No contest! One of the best bands to come out of the post punk era, lost count of the amount of times I saw 'em -should have been bigger, I ended up doing the artwork for Rob Kings (aka Lip Machine) Solo single "Lip Machine" but...
They have the best rhythm section, with great grooves! the lyrics are awesome, the guitar has a unique sound and so does the singer! what isn't there to like?
Utterly underrated band should have been recognised for the genuis they were!

22Hue & Cry
The brothers Kane from Glasgow. Still going strong after almost 30 years in the business. Scotland's most funky dudes.
Kane Bros - bitter suite - beautiful.

23Arab Strap
Deserve to be in the Top 10 for "The First Big Weekend" alone.

24Citizen Cain

25Cocteau Twins
One of the most influential bands in the world, let alone Scotland.
#28? What? In a class by themselves if you ask this New Yorker. But hey, perhaps I am missing something. Perhaps these bands ahead of them on this list need my attention. All I can say is the Cocteau Twins are etherial bliss.
Words cannot express my love for Liz frasers stunningly beautiful voice utterly unique singer and band


27Twin Atlantic
Young, new and fresh, they've added a lot to the music industry nowadays and are current, they'll go far- they're even better live than on there studio albums!
Great band, crazy live

28Snow Patrol
Isn't Snow Patrol Irish?

29Frightened Rabbit
Best live band I've seen from Scotland for a few years.
Gman Shoreditch radio
Super solid indie rock. Brilliant use of three guitarists, heart on sleeve lyrics... And great accents of course.

Their music caused my mate to collapse through the sheer volume and sensual assault. Mogwai are the only band which make me smile when I see them live.
A band that can create a wide range of emotions
Beautiful and angry all at the same time

Glasvegas are a top band, not felt a Scottish band hit me with a wall of Guitar fuzz since the wonderful Big country
Very strong and true lyrics and then the sound is almost unique, their first album is best.

32The Trashcan Sinatras
Ridiculously clever lyrics and infectious melodies. They are masters of the art of songwriting.
Cleverer than clever lyrics, guitar parts better than belle sweetest melodies SHOULD BE IN TOP TEN!
Brilliant lyrics, always wonderful with a tune.

33The Paul McKenna Band
One of my favourite bands



36The Beta Band

37Django Django
Been a huge fan of Django Django for a while. Just saw them play at the Unknown Festival in Croatia. One of the best live acts I have ever seen.

38The Blue Nile
These are essentiel and unique. No one comes close to the heartfelt vocals of Paul Buchanan. Pop perfection.

39The Silencers

See them, hear them and have fun with them - great fun.

41Del Amitri

42Teenage Fanclub
Sunshine music for dreich days.

I am spanish and I can't believe that nobody added the Skids (even if it was just association because Big Country is there)


One of the top bands for their time
The best scottish band ever.oh the best band ever. Iam english.

Wow, I had to add it to the list. I was at least expecting them to be on it haha. They're pretty awesome, hopefully people check them out even though they broke up

45Love and Money
Can't believe that such a great band could be overlooked? James Grant. ├ťber talented. 'Strange Kind of Love' is an album that sounds fabulous no matter how many times it's played.
James Grant is a musical genius. "Dogs in the traffic" is the best album by an scottish group that I┬'ve heard

46Baby Chaos
Released two fantastic albums in the mid 1990s, namely "Safe Sex, Designer Drugs and the Death of Rock 'n' Roll" and "Love Your Self Abuse".

"Spread It All Around" is a classic album

48The Average White Band

49Josef K

50Strawberry Switchblade
One of my favourite girl band in the early 80's

51Admiral Fallow
A cracking band - squealing pigs has to be one of the most foot stomping tunes around!

52The Chaplins
The best support band I've seen in years

53Sutherland Brothers & Quiver
Main part of this band is Scottish.

Why are they not near the top?


Annie Lennox is the main 'man' in this band.

Great band and always good for a great time and dancing around... if ya have seen them "live" once ya keep want to see them again in concert

58Red Hot Chilli Pipers
Once you've seen them live, you will always remember. Just a happy band.

59Clyde Valley Stompers

60Camera Obscura

Just love there stuff, really feel good music


63The Delgados
Messed up melodic madness with great lyrics.

64Cold Crows Dead

Where are Gun? I am from Majorca and I am a huge fan. They are the best scotish band and one of the best hard rock bands ever!

66The Waterboys
Cannot believe no one has nominated mike Scotts vehicle for his songwriting genius. Deserve top 10 for whole of the moon alone but so much more to this magnificent band

67Bay City Rollers

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This list was created 6 years, 331 days ago and has been voted on over 800 times. This top ten list has been remixed 6 times.

Updated Friday, April 24, 2015

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