Top Ten Best Scottish Bands

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The Top TenXW

1Runrig

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.

Absolutely best Scottish band ever

V59 Comments
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.

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

Simply the best rock band ever, period. Adamson was a genius songwriter and much underrated. Inspiring lyrics, thought provoking and poignant.

Probably should be tied with Runrig

V16 Comments
3Biffy 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

Best Scottish alternative rock band of recent times

V10 Comments
4Simple 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.

Don't you forget about simple minds

V11 Comments
5Belle 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.

This should be number one for both this and top five in best bands ever! I LOVE Belle and Sebastian music

One of the coolest band.. I'm from the Philippines

V3 Comments
6Franz 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!

7The 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.

Oh come on feel good foot tapping sing along music

V6 Comments
8Deacon Blue

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.

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.

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.

Swaying arms has to be one of the most romantic songs of all time. True soul and love.

V8 Comments
9The 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.

Underrated. They still sound amazing decades later.

V3 Comments
10Nazareth

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.

Hands down! Best Scottish band ever!

Best Rock band ever and still going strong

V2 Comments

The Newcomers

?Boards of Canada

The Contenders

11The Sensational Alex Harvey Band

Best live band in there,it was a show from street to encore.bamboo rules

Been a massive fan since 76. Ahead of their time. Amazing 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.

V1 Comment
12Paolo Nutini and the Vipers

The most known young Scottish singer outside Scotland. His voice is unique: powerful and passionate, he can sing almost in any genre and he never gets boring. And his band is always quality!

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!

V1 Comment
13The 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

V1 Comment
14The 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.

Seen them live, they're awesome!

V4 Comments
15Travis

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.

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!

V6 Comments
16The Exploited

Cannot imagine my teen years without Exploited records!

V1 Comment
17Texas
18Primal Scream

They have done nearly every music genre and released so many top quality albums. Not 'mani' bands can say that. They have so many different sounds. screamadelica is one of the greatest albums around and will be remembered for years.

V2 Comments
19The Corries

The harmonies between Roy and Ronnie are so amazing. Some of the songs they sing make great lullabies, and they do some classics as well. Although an older band, they are timeless.

V2 Comments
20Sparrow and the Workshop
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List StatsUpdated 1 Jul 2016

1,000 votes
72 listings
8 years, 35 days old

Top Remixes (6)

1. The Jesus and Mary Chain
2. Belle and Sebastian
3. Franz Ferdinand
Blue_Devereaux
1. Paolo Nutini and the Vipers
2. Biffy Clyro
3. Belle and Sebastian
Paisleykel
1. Nazareth
2. Big Country
3. The Sensational Alex Harvey Band
Ironside

WRemix
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