Best Black Metal Bands
The Top Ten
An awesome band (formed by one man) and one of the pioneers in the black metal genre (together with Celtic Frost).
One of the best black metal bands I've heard.
One of the best viking metal bands I've heard.
One of the best thrash metal bands I've heard.
Classic band! Just listen Enter the Eternal Fire... And you'll know soon what I'm saying.
Quorthon the man the myth the legend
A very underrated band in general
I’m not a black metal fan so I haven’t heard that much black metal bands. All I know are these classic old bands and some blackened death/thrash bands. Burzum and all burzum copy bands suck, 1 riff for ten minutes make me sleepy. Darkthrone have some good albums but also many boring ones. Venom sound just like hardcore punk. Emperor is epic and Bathory (except the first album) is glorious. They are the best in what I have heard.
I listen to Enter the Eternal fire and loved it in less than a minute, before the first four listens I had already checked their best albums and downloaded them. They make the type of music I always thought was a fantasy. If you are passionately hardcore, dark, and a little compassionate... They'll be the best thing you've ever heard (Nutty Nyc)
At The Heart Of Winter is too good for them not to be considered either the best ot ne of the very best
What's awesome about Immortal is that their lyrics aren't satanic.
IMMORTAL, DARKTHRONE, BURZUM, MAYHEM AND EMPEROR should be at first spot irrespective of their position they equally important
This list totally wrecked
DIMMU BORGIR is greatly influenced by IMMORTAL
Whether or not you consider them to be the best, they're regardless the most black metal band there is besides Gorgoroth. And, I would say they're even more-so black metal -- they haven't released their names, they've perhaps stuck to the sound more than anyone else. It doesn't get more black metal than Immortal. - JR302
An awesome band, greatly influences most bands of the death/black metal scene.
Dead was the first man to use the corpse paint.
The only band of the world to have a murderer and a murdered recording together.
Hail Mayhem! DARKNESS IS GLOWING!
This is the best Black Metal band of all time in my opinion. The band that created the Black Metal atmosphere in my view. - ahh28
Hail Mayhem. Necrobutcher, Dead, Euronymous and Hellhammer are emperors of the second wave!
Blends terrifying and brutal together. As someone who comes from thrash and death metal Mayhem introduced me to Black Metal and I have yet to find a black metal band as talented as them.
True Norwegian Black metal : repetitive, monotonous, hypnotic. Try to listen to it with full concentration on the music, it's like traveling to another imaginary world
Cradle of filth are not BM.
Darkthrone is True Norwegian Black Metal and should be number 2m/
Darkthrone should be top three
Emperor has a level of composition that is superior to all other black metal bands without sacrificing rawness like Dimmu Borgir
Wtf!! How is Emperor not at the top of this list?? While I'll give Venom credit for starting the genre in a way, their music on the other hand sucks. Emperor are the kings of Black Metal! Every great element of Black Metal (other than the general riff structure and vocal approach, which goes to Mayhem) was done first by this band. Dimmu Borgir sounded like an Emperor tribute band at first and Satyricon isn't even Black Metal anymore they're more like Black Rock. Great list but Emperor should be a no-brainer #1 here. Kudos for throwing Celtic Frost in the list as well!! - sorteal
Emperor took everything a Black Metal band was supposed to be with the same general style as well as the embrace of church burnings, and then made it even better with their songwriting and brilliant vocals and musicians. The atmosphere and ominous feeling you get from listening to their stuff from "In the Nightshade Eclipse" gives many people chills and really feels like some evil force is present. Also, Emperor called it quits before they could become bad (as many bands stay active for way too long while their music becomes worse and worse), making many look up to them as "legends".
Emperor is definitely the cream of the crop when it comes to black metal. They do represent the pinnacle of songwriting, musicianship, conveyance of emotional intensity and atmosphere as far as I know and hear - not to mention one of the only BM bands I've ever seen that don't look and sound like pretentious idiots.
He is the one man super band with the vocals of a crazy man!
This solo project has become some of the best Black Metal out there. - ahh28
My personal favorite artist in any form in any category for anything, definitely deserving of the number 1 spot, having pioneered second wave black metal. Even though he now refuses to associate himself with the scene and had no intention to start or take part in it in the first place. However, leaving my passion for Burzum aside, if it was placed second to Bathory I wouldn't be ultimately dissatisfied. But anything else? Bull. - KeyToTheWatchtower
Every song has an iconic or differentiating riff with every other instrument at top quality... Recorded and written by one man.
Honestly, I like Dimmu Borgir a lot (hate me), but they don't belong on this list. They aren't "true black metal", the top spots should belong to the bands Dimmu Borgir looked up to (Bathory, Immortal, Venom, Mayhem, Emperor, Celtic Frost)
Basically, they are too symphonic to be considered a true black metal band, because they took the "raw" element out of the music. - ryanrimmel
While they're not completely black metal but, I feel they deserve their position on this list. They had a huge influence on a lot of extreme metal bands that emerged after the mid-90s.
Whilst staying true to their black metal origins, this band's sound evolves with every album. They're are pleasure to listen to, it's pure escapism for me. Love the fact that every album has a different feel and sound too.
Dimmu Borgir! They should be a bit higher. Regardless, the rest of the bands (or most of them) are definitely worthy of their positions, such as Mayhem, Burzum, Immortal and of course, Bathory, however Behemoth should be up there too, or at least somewhere higher than they are. But hell, all metal (with the exception of the not so good metal) is good metal.
Behemoth should be way higher, and it is the best deathly black metal band to date (anytime) so its gotta be one of my favorites
Their not to black metal these days but I love their older raw black metal albums behemoth are defiantly one of my favorites.
This is the god of death metal in poland along with vader-basically death metal band but but many songs of this band has a twendency to black metal, they are one of the most professional band in the history-by the way nergal is cured and can compose more legendery songs like before
The only black metal band that has good production. Every black metal band is like "we sound so evil" but the production is absolutely horrible. Behemoth stands out to me because they have amazing and evil and huge production
Even though bands like Venom, Celtic Frost or Mercyful Fate have influenced the genre a lot, neither of them are actually black metal. I'd say that Venom would be for thrash / speed metal list. - levtomas1998
Just because later bands change the style of black metal, it doesn't mean Venom, Celtic Frost weren't black, Celtic Frost were even Death Metal. - GREYBOYY
Lets not be stupid. There wouldn't be black metal with out these guys.
crazy 2 here the music sounds better than a whole lot better than there counterparts
Not the best, but they're great, and I love them. I think Kirk Hammett put it the best. "Listening to Venom is like watching a bad horror movie, as long as you don't have high expectation's you'll enjoy it a lot"
Very cool message from the band. This band's mostly about the message they want to spread instead of the music itself. Simply nice
One of the best bands in the genre, should be way higher on the list.
How come these guys aren't at the top? Gorgoroth is but the most brutal (yet understandable in terms of melody) black metal band of all, these are the most satanic group of musicians there is and wrote the hymn of black metal that is Sign of an Open Eye.
One of the darkest and best black metal bands! Should be on at least top 5!
Their song themes are very dark and evil but what stands out to me is their musicality. They were playing so much more melodic and genius music than in my opinion a lot of other bands
With such lyrical themes such as satanism, darkness and death but can still remain musically melodic and beautiful (black-metal wise), Dissection is definitely one of the greatest Black Metal bands ever, at least way greater than Demon Burger.
Anti-cosmic metal of death...
Please don't put bands like dimmu borgir here... They're not black metal band!
Pure Satanic swedish Black Metal. Hail the Legacy!
18? What? This is by far the best black metal band ever! Granted, they experiment with a lot of different types of metal, but black metal is the true sound of Celtic Frost. Tom Warrior is an absolute genius, and he's basically my biggest inspiration for writing music
The first true Black Metal band. (Bathory is good but Hellhammer/Celtic Frost is ridiculously great) Danse Macabre is the most terrifying track you can hear.
Saddens me that the greatest, most influential black metal band is not even in the top ten. - IronSabbathPriest
#17? No way! They deserve to be in the top five. - IronSabbathPriest
Latest Satyricon's music is more "catchy" and softer than the first albums. Not a band thing, I reallty enjoy the change, good music.
Hell! Why so low? They deserve to be in the top 3 along with mayhem and burzum! New black metal bands suck! For me dimmu borgir is not the real bm their melodies really ruin the black metal essence..
Cradle of Filth are not black metal, nor the Dimmu Borgir, at least my opinion band who created anthem for norwegian black metal sound should be on the top of the list.
What, you have to revise this invalid list and adjust it instantly, this band should be at least in top 5
Oh god, I can't choose... I'm going with Marduk, even though they tie with so many other amazing bands... - shoulderboythemetalhead
Best Black Metal band of all time in my opinion! They should at least be in the top 5 on this list!
Probably the most blasphemous band on the planet, as well one of the best black metal bands nowadays, the reason black metal is still strong. Check out their in my opinion best album, Panzer Division Marduk, and you'll know what I'm talking about, and they still reign mighty and unstoppable.
Unbelievable evil, great for all the family, best growler in the business.
They have released five albums, all of which are brilliant. I even got a signed copy of Marrow of the Spirit from the band! - IronSabbathPriest
This is the band that has defined my life. Ever since I heard The Mantle for the first time ever, my way of thinking and interests altered for the better. The dark dismal lyrics, sometimes about nature, are just so so powerful. I could not ask for a better gift in my life than Agalloch!
Black Metal in a non-conventional way! A lot of atmospheric and acoustic passages. Melancholy and epic musicianship!
The band that made me listen to black metal
The secret of black arts is very challenging to play on drums and this band is amazing
Great list but I think Dark Funeral should be much higher
Really? 18? Dark Funetal kicks ass! They definitely should be way higher on the list. Top 5 at least.
Top 15? Dark funeral should be at least top 5!
Not just a great Black Metal band, but one of the most creative and innovative bands making music today. Enslaved consistently release quality albums.
Enslaved should be higher on this list. One of the best bands of the past 20 years, black metal or otherwise.
Frost is my favorite black metal album. There are a lot of great albums in black metal such as spiritual black dimmensions by dimmu Borgir, pure holocaust by immortal and anything by gorgoroth and dark funeral but frost just stand out in this genera just like transylvanian hunger
Apparently this is an under-rated band! I thought they would be higher. :/ - elves23
One of the best swedish black metal bands out there. Just listen to songs like Legions of the Black Light and Malfeitor and you'll see their greatness. - zappyo29
Watain is literally the best black metal band ever, it's one of the bands that made me the one who I am today
Should at least be in the top ten.
I like Venom but it's not black metal Watain actually is
Top 5 for sure these guys are amazing
The everything on this band is amazing.
The vocals are possibly the most listenable of any black metal band I've ever heard, alongside Darkthrone.
The symphonies are breathtaking, and the lyrics perfectly match the atmosphere given off by said symphonies.
Drums are no slouch either, with very well structured parts and an insanely talented player.
Guitars could stand to shine a bit more, though.
I just found this band the other day and I am so glad I did! They are so amazing. I was listening to their latest album, "Dance And Laugh Amongst The Rotten," and the story was so incredible. The whole ouija story was incredible! I definitely recommend.
Best black metal band to date, the lyrics the symphonic bits, the guitar, the screams. everything fits together in one masterpiece.
I'm in love with Neige. I had to say it, sorry guys.
Alcest invented the blackgaze. They went far from the stereotypical black metal tematics talking about otherwordly, melancholic and ethereal things.
Such a nice and pleasant band
You can feel their songs.. Ah.. such.. I don't know what to say about them...
Their songs (almost all) are so pleasant. - Kaustab
For the longest time black metal had become really stagnant and most of the new bands were just recycling the old and not being any innovative until the genre. Until Wolves in the Throne Room arrive and took black metal to new places. They are by far the best modern black metal bands to date.
You can't make a list without this band they are so good at making their music
True Norwegian Black Metal. Needless to say more.
The most negative band on earth. I love them.
In my opinion, the best black metal band.
The best melodic black/death metal hybrid there is. The band has many influences from Dark Funeral and Dimmu Borgir in their compositions.
They should be at number 6.
Melodic yet aggressive,you can drown your sorrow deep within the song's melody
Definitely one of my favourites, listened to this since I was 13!
Wrong picture. The photo is from the first Celtic Frost lineup.
My favorite proto black metal band. 1st wave is obviously the best and I HATE IT when people say " well it's not really black metal, more thrash or speed etc". They just don't sound like 2nd wave. But Hellhammer is my favorite. I'm sorry, but they should have stuck to hellhammer rather than change to Celtic Frost... that's my opinion - Rusty665
So black and depressing
Old school 1st wave bm one of my fave bands
For me in the top 10. great sound - christiansteffl
They might not be black metal anymore. But you can't deny the brilliance of their albums. Bergtatt is an amazing black metal album that I find as underrated.
Bergtatt is the best black metal album ever. Period. No one comes close
They aren't black metal anymore, but Bergtatt is one of the best albums ever, and Natten's Madrigal is also. To see them at #41 is shameful.
Their only one album is amazingly amazing, professional drummer...
His debut solo album is incredible - ryanrimmel
I love this band. They are my second favorite band in all of music. But they are not black metal ENOUGH to be on this list. - shoulderboythemetalhead
Good band at wrong category.
85? What? At least in the top ten list..
Ma god - brutal
This band is ass
This isn't black metal, this is hipster nonsense - SirSkeletorThe3rd
Their music is organic, impassioned and often quite beautiful. They consistently deliver high quality songs.
Taking black metal to new places with heavily emotional music.
Best band ever.
More emotional value than any other black metal band.
Drudkh have shown that great black metal doesn't have to come from Norway. drudkh always delivers great albums my favorites being "Blood In Our Wells" and "Autumn Aurora"
Drudkh brings great albums my favorite being "blood in our wells"
Drudkh is the best black metal ambient/folk oriented style- band of the XXI century. They are unique, folkish melodic and atmospheric. Blood in Our Wells is their best relase to date
Not only are they death metal, they're an awful talentless group. I'd rather listen to Black Veil Brides all day than this trash.
ONE OF THE BEST QUALITY DEATH/BLACK METAL BAND
... ¿What? - Doomed_God
Listen to them they are nice. give it a try
The band most underrated of Black Metal
One of the best and most underrated metal bands today!
Probably the best, but very unknown..
Unbelievable band! Invoking The Majestic Throne Of Satan🤘🤘🤘is probably the BEST BM record EVER
Leviathan is why I'm into black metal he deserves all possible thanks I can give
Way to low on the list
Some of the darkest, and most sinister Black Metal out there! - Spineapple
The best black metal ever heard is from leviathan
Nowhere near black metal - Ananya
It's a only true Norwegian black metal band
What horna isn't from norway
Thrash, not black metal. Why?
One of the more interesting black metal bands, who released 3 fantastic albums in the late 90s
Black thrash still awesome
Raw black metal, in my opinion the only black metal band keeping the genre alive and frost is an epic drummer
How are 1349 so far down? They are right now (2014) one of the best Black Metal bands. They also have one of modern metal's best drummers; Frost! Definitely deserve top 15.
1349 should be much higher, one of the rawest and most awesome black metal bands ever!
Why the hell so low down? Should be top 5, Massive Cauldron of Chaos is a masterpiece. best black metal band I've seen live. by far.
One of the best black metal bands there is, everyone that knows can appreciate this beauty
Windir is surprisingly low at 53. They are my favorite band out of the ones in this list, along with Agalloch and maybe Immortal.
Should be way higher. Since they no longer exist since 2004 such a low rank is understandable but everyone who knows this band can appreciate the uniqueness of this band. By far my most favourite band of all time.
Should be in the top 10 at the very least, every album is great, If you like epic, melodic, heavy and experimental black metal this is a band you gotta check out.
Best Band from Latvia! - Mikbiter15
Raw blasphemous black metal
Nor traditional black metal but one of the best DSBM bands.