Best British Classic Rock Bands

The Top Ten

1 Queen Queen are an English rock band formed in 1970. Members were Freddie Mercury (Vocals and Piano), Brian May (Guitar, Vocals), Roger Taylor (Drums, Vocals), and John Deacon (Bass Guitar, Vocals). Before forming into Queen, Brian May and Roger Taylor had played together in a band named Smile. Freddie Mercury ...read more.

You asked for my opinion so here it comes.
Queen is the best band ever to exist, and there are many reasons for me saying that.
Queen had loads and loads of talent and creativity.
Ever heard Bohemian Rhapsody?
Yeah, I bet you have.
That couldn't have been written in 10 minutes.
That took hard, long work to be able to write the music, lyrics, and figure out all the different parts of the song.
Not to mention that Queen is so underrated.
May people forget about them, even though they wrote hits like We Will Rock You, We Are The Champions, and Another One Bites The Dust that you can hear likely everyday.
There's a reason why people still listen to music, and that's because it sounds good to them.
Well Queen sounds really good to me.
Freddie Mercury, where do I start?
Yes, he's another reason why Queen is the greatest band ever to exist.
Ever seen Queen, live in concert?
Yes? No? Maybe so?
Well the truth is he can work up a crowd.
And by ...more

Queen are just one of those bands that you can't really fault. They aren't overrated; every inch of their fame and glory was thoroughly deserved. Their live performances have some people of the current generation wishing they were born earlier. Freddie's vocals are probably the best you will hear on the face of the Earth (and he was one of the greatest pianists). Brian and his Red Special are probably the most emotional guitar leads you will hear. John is POSSIBLY the most underrated musician of all time, and was Queen's secret weapon. Roger was no slouch on the drums. His back-up voice was also quite impressive.

Also, all the members of the band were talented writers (they all wrote hits; Bohemian Rhapsody, We Are The Champions and Don't Stop Me Now belonged to Freddie. Brian had We Will Rock You, Hammer to Fall and I Want It All. John had Spread Your Wings, Another One Bites The Dust and I Want To Break Free. Roger had Radio Ga Ga, A Kind Of Magic and These Are The Days Of ...more

Queen rules. Musically more sophicated than any other band. Vocally more talented than any other band. Not one song sounds like another, they had no genre, no one dimension. Take away the incredible vocals and you have classic instrumentals. The rise and fall of the guitar riffs and drum beat are instantly recognizable and incredible. It is well establish about the vocal ability of Freddie Mercury, his range, his rapid voice clearly singing every word like no one before or since. His voice was an instrument he used however he wanted. Likewise could be said of Brian May's guitar. His guitar was his voice and he used it like no one other before or since. And the drum beats got to you too.
But the real test of their greatness, was their lyrics that touched the hearts of their fans, the common man and woman. Who has sometimes wished they have never been born at all, who has felt that they have had their share of sand kicked in their face, who's has felt that they have worked til they ...more

Variety, depth, emotion, skill, power, grace, entertainment, personality and warmth went into every queen song. They are unlike any other group on the planet, in that they attempted all kinds of music styles and never played it safe on any album I can think of. The result is a series of successful and memorable songs which will survive the test of time for years to come. Long live queen!

2 The Beatles The Beatles were an English rock band formed in Liverpool in 1960. The members consisted of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr. They were soon known as the foremost and most influential act of rock era. Rooted in skiffle, beat, and 1950s rock and roll, the Beatles later experimented ...read more.

They were it, like nothing else! If you were alive when they were at their peak, you already know that nothing - and I mean nothing - before or since has captured the imagination and adoration of the world or influenced it as they did. You already KNOW that nothing gets close to this! The variety and originality of sound they produced (while occupying the top of the charts) simply left the rest of the world in their dust, and their appearance and style established men's fashion that we still know today. So, the only credible battle about best bands (or, indeed, best popular musical act) can only be about who might occupy a very distant second place.

Time after time - pro rockers, critics, producers and fans have voted The Beatles Best rock band of all time. Any other band is a distant second no matter who they might be. Look at their library and the timelessness of their songs as well as their variety of styles. Geez people!

Not only because they have the most recognizable and and iconic names in music history, a wide variety of musical repertory, most of their songs are great hits, but also because they have the biggest plot twist in group maturity in history becoming good boys from Liverpool to a globally long-haired experimental rock band that opened up the minds of generations.

in 3rd?
the best band in music history in 3rd?
Pink Floyd and Led Zeppelin are really good bands, but THE BEATLES are the best!

3 Pink Floyd Pink Floyd was an English progressive rock band formed in 1965 in London, England. They achieved international acclaim with their progressive and psychedelic music. The band consisted of 5 members - David Gilmour (Vocals and Guitar), Syd Barrett (Vocals and Guitar), Nick Mason (Drums), Roger Waters ...read more.

Best band of all time. Their music is beyond awesome. They have the best album ever, which is Dark Side Of The Moon. I had to vote for this band. They weren't afraid to be different in music. Plus, they have the deepest of lyrics.

well duh! it was the first time you had a reason two watch the wizzard of oz (if you know about the one thing where Dark side of the moon syncs up with the movie)

Lyrics that make you think, music that takes you to another dimension. Very easy to just sit in a dark room and listen to any of their albums all the way through

Their songs are accessible but unique and experimental. Not only are they one of the best selling acts if all time but one of the best full stop.

4 Led Zeppelin Led Zeppelin was an English rock band formed in London in 1968. The group consisted of Robert Plant (Vocal), Jimmy Page (Guitar), John Paul Jones (Bass, Keyboard) and John Bonham (Drums). The band's heavy, guitar-driven sound, rooted in blues and psychedelia on their early albums, has earned them recognition ...read more.

I consider myself Hendrix's number 1 fan...yet, I believe when we use the word band, and this being about best British bands, Led Zeppelin is the definite answer. All the members were excellent musicians. These were multi-talented stars with an incredible thirst for creating music. Their music was so easy to understand and had so many levels. Take Immigrant Song, an iconic two-note masterpiece with incredible drive. You also have songs like Achilles's Last Stand, The Rain Song and others that have so many layers. A singer who was a master at the harmonica like the classic blues stars he admired, a guitarist that could play just about anything with strings, a bass player who also played strings and produced incredible music and last but not least...the one and only, John "Bonzo" Henry Bonham who did not have to play any other instrument because he was the hungriest percussionist always on the lookout for a groove. Bonzo would spice every song up differently to the point where ...more

The Beatles were talented yes, but I have to say Zeppelin's members were considerably more so. This is most prominent in Jimmy Page, who was worlds better than Harrison on the guitar. He could make playing a guitar solo with a violin bow extremely entertaining whereas Harrison wasn't even playing guitar in the Beatles' best guitar song (Clapton on While My Guitar Gently Weeps; the Clapton vs Page argument is a whole other argument). Anyway, I could sit through a 20 minute John Bonham drum solo (see live version of Moby Dick) and I've got to say Ringo seems like a nice guy but his talents were nowhere near Bonzo's. John Paul Jones' bass-playing is perhaps more subtle than McCartney's but is intricate in itself; JPJ beats out Paul in terms of bass-playing ability. Finally, there's no denying that both Lennon & McCartney had amazing voices, but Plant's is OTHERWORDLY. Sure, McCartney had a clearer and more "beautiful" tone to his voice but man, Plant ranged from a spine-shivering screech ...more

Led Zeppelin is ranked number 1 on top 10 classic rock bands and rock bands. What makes you think they shouldn't be number one here. They are by far the best band ever and no band even come close. Name a band that has a song as beautiful as the Rain song, and a song as epic as Kashmir or stairway to heaven. There are no bands with the amount of talent or creativity that Zeppelin had

their sound is amazing, I've always loved their great sound
with an infinite list of great songs, everybody should like their music

5 The Rolling Stones The Rolling Stones are an English rock band formed in London in 1962. The first settled line-up consisted of Brian Jones (guitar, harmonica), Ian Stewart (piano), Mick Jagger (lead vocals, harmonica), Keith Richards (guitar), Bill Wyman (bass) and Charlie Watts (drums). ...read more.

They're still rocking since 60s to nowadays. Definitely one of the very best bands from UK. Sympathy for the devil is one of the greatest songs. 99, 99% percent of their songs rock.

So old yet so good

What the hell is led zeppelin. They are so overrated I think beatles is even better than led zep boo come on vote this for number 1

The best frontman ever

6 The Who The Who is an English rock band formed in London, England in 1964. The most recognizable lineup was Roger Daltrey (lead vocals), Pete Townshend (guitar), John Entwistle (bass guitar), and Keith Moon (drums). They are best known for their live performances and hit songs Baba O'Riley, My Generation, and ...read more.

They are simply amazing. They have one of the most energetic lives I've ever seen, yet it's not too much over the top. Exactly what you expect of Rock. People always tell me you either have to be a rolling stones, Beatles or the who fan. I'd pick the Who anyday.

Tell those people who tell you that to shut up. I'm a beatles, rolling stones and who fan. But I like the who the most. Seen em 3 times. - sweetbeef

Who, stones, Beatles in that order

John entwhistle. his skills are undeniable.

7 Jimi Hendrix Experience

despite the fact hendrix is american the experience was formed in england and the other members are british I believe so its really a british band.

Sure, Hendrix is by far the greatest American rocker around, but after settling down in England he formed this fantastic group!

It's a American bad not British

What does this band do in this top? It's great group, but it's not British.

8 Deep Purple Deep Purple are an English rock band formed in Hertford in 1968. They are considered to be among the pioneers of heavy metal and modern hard rock, although their musical approach changed over the years. Originally formed as a progressive rock band, the band shifted to a heavier sound in 1970. Deep Purple, ...read more.

Ritchie and John were the greatest. Nobody could compare with them.

"Smoke on the water" has an amazing yet simple riff

Thanks for given purple a high ranking. Blackmore.. Gillan.. Glover.. Lord.. Paice were as good as led zep.. They should be top 5.

The Beatles, ELO and Queen then Deep Purple.

9 Yes Yes is an English progressive rock band formed in 1968 by bassist Chris Squire and singer Jon Anderson. They first achieved success in the 1970s with a progressive, art and symphonic style of rock music. Their best known song is their 1971 hit "Roundabout" off of their album Fragile.

As good of musicians as you'll ever see or hear. Amazing that so few have taken to time to listen and understand how great this band was and still is. Close to the Edge is a groundbreaking album. Yes set the stage for many of today's acts yet no one to date can duplicate their intricate musical scores and soaring keyboard, guitar and bass leads. Hats off to Yes!

These guys were one of the godfathers of progressive rock, I'm sure we wouldn't have Opeth without them.

"Owner of a lonely heart"

10 Genesis Genesis are an English rock band formed at Charterhouse School, Godalming, Surrey in 1967. The most commercially successful and long-lasting line-up includes keyboardist Tony Banks, bassist/guitarist Mike Rutherford and drummer/singer Phil Collins.

Genesis created absolutely fantastic music, played with skill, they could teach most modern bands a lot!

The Contenders

11 Dire Straits Dire Straits were a British rock band formed in 1977 by Mark Knopfler, his younger brother David Knopfler, John Illsley, and Pick Withers.

Sultans Of Swing, Romeo And Juliet, Telegraph Road, Money For Nothing, Down To the Waterline, Where Do You Think You're Going, Tunnel Of Love, Private Investigations, Brothers In Arms, Calling Elvis, Twisting By The Pool, Private Investigations, Once Upon A Time In the West, On Every Street, Love Over Gold, Solid Rock, Walk Of Life, Wild West End, Portobello Belle, Your Latest Trick, Two Young Lovers, So Far Away, You And Your Friend, Lady Writer, etc. Such timeless songs!

Splendid songwriting by Mark Knopfler.

Intelligent music and lyrics.

Incredible fame and fastest/biggest selling band at their time.

There has always been something universal about their music (as for the Beatles), but the music and the lyrics are more profound, according to me.

Simply the greatest band ever formed... Led by the master Mark Knopfler. His guitar style and songwriting ability is unmatched in my opinion.

Mark Knopfler was the king of his generation. All of Dire Strait's songs are just art. They are all Mona Lisas really. Mark Knopfler just makes it cool, and he knows chords no one else knows. He's amazing. Dire Straits is not only the best band in UK but the best in the world...

12 Moody Blues The Moody Blues are an English rock band. They first came to prominence playing rhythm and blues music, but their second album, Days of Future Passed, which was released in 1967, was a fusion of rock with classical music and established them as pioneers in the development of art rock and progressive ...read more.

Different in style not a copycat, most under-rated rock band!

The Moody Blues deserve to be in the Top 10. They still tour and their music is timeless. I am in awe of their passion for what they do!

13 The Clash The Clash were an English punk rock band that formed in 1976 as part of the original wave of British punk.

The only band that matters. The greatest band hands down, although T. Rex and the Smiths come close

14 The Kinks The Kinks are an English rock band formed in Muswell Hill, North London, in 1964 by brothers Ray and Dave Davies. They are regarded as one of the most important and influential rock bands of the 1960s.

Should be way higher up in this list! Way Highre! Could be as high as three or four! People! Listen to their albums from 1966 to 71 and then tell me they didn't influence well, everyone!

When the Kinks songs first played on radio in the U.S. 64/65 The sound was like nothing I have ever heard before. The songs made you feel alive with the heavy guitar riff. This sound was completely different than the Beatles. I was hooked. Their music has not aged with time. It's easy to use the style of a band already established. But to be the first to create a new sound. That's different. My opinion they should be #,3

Ray Davies is a better song writer than anyone on the list, Dave is underrated as to his contributions to guitar. Top ten easy

"You really got me" has an awesome guitar riff

15 Def Leppard Def Leppard are an English rock band formed in 1977 in Sheffield as part of the new wave of British heavy metal movement.

Definitely Leppard was a great 80s hair band.
Their most famous song is "pour some sugar on me"

I find it weird the best 'British' ones was make by someone called 'Russian'

I still remember when I heard Pyromania album for the first time, awesome. F-f-f-foolin, Photograph, Die hard the hunter, need I say more.

16 Black Sabbath Black Sabbath were a Heavy Metal band formed in Birmingham, England in 1968 by guitarist and songwriter Tony Iommi, singer John "Ozzy" Osbourne, bassist and main lyricist Geezer Butler and drummer Bill Ward. ...read more.

Hm, never heard better guitar riffs besides Deep Purple and Ozzy, aah legendary Ozzy - getting wet eyes when reflecting on this...

Godfathers of metal, got to be at least top ten

Black Sabbath is not a classic rock band and shouldn't be on this list (same for Iron Maiden).

17 Cream Cream were a 1960s British rock supergroup power trio consisting of bassist/vocalist Jack Bruce, drummer Ginger Baker, and guitarist/vocalist Eric Clapton.

The best three musicians in their trade in one band.

Eric Clapton is one of the best guitarists ever!

18 Emerson, Lake & Palmer Emerson, Lake & Palmer were an English progressive rock supergroup formed in London in 1970. The band consisted of keyboardist Keith Emerson, singer, bassist, and producer Greg Lake, and drummer and percussionist Carl Palmer.
19 Rainbow Rainbow are a British rock band led by guitarist Ritchie Blackmore from 1975 to 1984 and 1993 to 1997. They were originally established with Ronnie James Dio as the lead singer and lyricist. Rainbow were ranked No. 90 on VH1's 100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock. The band has sold over 28 million albums ...read more.

They deserve a lot more attention

20 Whitesnake Whitesnake are a rock band formed in England in 1978 by singer David Coverdale, after his departure from his previous band Deep Purple.

Great British rock band, from its early rock-blues to its hard metal sound, always great melodies, lyrics, and David Coverdales fantastic voice. Who can forget, In the Still of the night, Is this love, Fool for your lovin', Here I go again, Don't break my heart again, all superb.

21 Uriah Heep Uriah Heep are an English rock band formed in London in 1969 that was one of the top rock bands in the early 1970s. Twelve of the band's albums have made it to the UK Albums Chart (Return to Fantasy reached No. 7 in 1975). Uriah Heep's distinctive features include a massive keyboard sound, strong vocal ...read more.

Mick box can play period

One of the greats

From 2008's wake the sleeper thru 2015's outsider. Quality hard rock, aor, classic rock. Listen and you will know.

22 The Police The Police were an English rock band formed in London in 1977. For the majority of their history, the band consisted of Sting, Andy Summers and Stewart Copeland. They are most known for their songs "Message In A Bottle", "Don't Stand So Close To Me", "Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic", "Roxanne", ...read more.

"Every breath you take"

So underrated. They defined the 80s.

One of the greatest rock 'n' roll bands alongside Queen and Pink Floyd

23 Sex Pistols The Sex Pistols were an English punk rock band formed in London in 1975. Although they initially lasted just two and a half years and produced only four singles and one studio album, Never Mind the Bollocks, Here's the Sex Pistols, they are considered one of the most influential acts in the history ...read more.

One of the most influential band of all time.

24 The Smiths The Smiths were an English rock band formed in Manchester in 1982. The band consisted of vocalist Morrissey, guitarist Johnny Marr, bassist Andy Rourke and drummer Mike Joyce.

Brilliant band

25 Jethro Tull Jethro Tull were a British rock group, formed in Luton, Bedfordshire, in December 1967. Initially playing blues rock, the band soon developed its sound to incorporate elements of British folk music and hard rock to forge a progressive rock signature.

Long live flute rock! truly deserves better than 25 but then again there were so many excellent examples of brits taking blues to its next logical progression. Really great music.

Truly original masters of all genres from prog to hard rock to folk to jazz to electro

8Load More
PSearch List