Rock Songs With the Best Instrumentals

A lot of great songs have great lyrics, but some songs have some pretty great instrumental parts as well. These are the best of those songs, whether they're completely instrumental or not.

The Top Ten

1 Orion (Metallica)

Orion is easely the best instrumental song ever!

I think Orion is the most powerful peace of music ever. RIP Cliff Burton!

Wow... what a song - lilrocketman

Just when everyone thought Metallica was history they released "Death Magnetic", and that stuff is a little redundant on the riffs but still shows they can jam harder and longer than any band so far.

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2 YYZ (Rush)

YYZ is the easiest choice: it has meaning. The song is about coming home! On top of it being dynamically perfect, it is highly evocative. Orion is a wonderful song too, but come on...

Amazing song by an amazing band. I do think there is a better instrumental by the same band... LA Villa Strangiato is far more complex and diverse. By he way some of the songs on this list aren't instrumentals.. just saying! - scaff212

Sorry Orion, but YYZ is the king. I do like Orion, but YYZ is easily the best instrumental I've ever heard.

Orion? No way brothers. Orion has so little instrumentality compared to YYZ. YYZ boasts everything in a rock instrumental. Great drum solos, great guitar licks and solos and perfect 'Geddy' basslines. Where is Eruption? Black Star by Yngwie? For The Love Of God? Cliffs Of Dover? MAGGOT BRAIN? WHERE ARE THOSE? I thought all of us know ROCK MUSIC very well.

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3 Eruption (Van Halen)

Probably the most well known instrumental

The best instrumental ever! And one of the best guitarists too - CalebMusic

This is a good song - bobbythebrony

You can never go wrong with this song.

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4 The Call of Ktulu (Metallica)

AMAZING SONG! Shows the incredible range that Metallica has. And half the songs on this list aren't even instrumentals

This song is incredible, I love Metallica and all their work but I don't know how someone can say Orion is better than call of ktulu!

This list is so innacurate I want to cringe. The list should contain this and Orion, (Suicide and Redemption is awesome too) For the Love of God by Steve Vai, Black Star by Yngwie Malmsteen, Cliffs of Dover by Eric Johnson, Eruption, Buckethead, and so on. Come on guys, stop voting for songs that aren't instrumentals.

Every now and then I like to put on this song and taste every single bit of it.

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5 Maggot Brain (Funkadelic)

The best guitar instrument ever..

Blackbird McKnight, Bernie Worrel, and Bootsy! 'enough said.

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6 Scene Seven: I. The Dance of Eternity (Dream Theater)

Just try to count the time signatures

#63

I don't want to live on this planet anymore

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7 Any Colour You Like (Pink Floyd)

Without any doubt one of the greatest of course!

I thank David so much for every trip I spend listening to Pink Floyd. This I'll indeed take you to a much higher place.

Simple amazing. Will take you to higher places for sure.

Relax and fly stratosphere...

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8 Jessica (The Allman Brothers Band)

Greatest Rock and Roll instrumental song of all time by a long way. Greatest guitar riff of all time - easy.

I lived in "Beirut, Lebanon for nearly four years during the Israeli - Syrian-Lebanese war in the early 80's. The "Allman Brothers" were a saving grace during all the madness. I lived there for nearly four years. It's a beautiful country caught in the fury of war. If it weren't for the people and the music the world would be nearly unbearable. "Tim Elfstrom" from Connecticut.

Yeah MAN! Roll your car windows down... And Jessica is your highway soundtrack! - frank

How can I download this song

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9 Sleep Walk (The Ventures)

Sleepwalking by Santo & Johnny is classic.

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10 Soothsayer (Buckethead)

How in the name of god isn't soothsayer on the top 10?! It saddens me to see how underrated buckethead is and this song is easily better than most of the ones in the first 10.

If we could hear God in music Buckethead would be his prophet. The raw emotion and depth carried by this song is unreal. No other guitarist in the world can match his skill.

Only buckethead. Only the greatest guitar player of all time could make an instrumental metal song emotional. Just beautiful and just so good.

Soothsayer is the closest thing we can get to hearing the voice of God himself. This song is a masterpiece, the guitar is uncanny and will never be matched ever

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The Contenders

11 To Live is to Die (Metallica)

NO, No no... To live is to die is the best instrumental song dedicated to best bassist by the best band... It's more than a song, it's a Masterpiece! Sometimes words are not enough to make you cry! This is my favorite instrumental song of all times!

This song feels deep

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12 The Great Gig in the Sky (Pink Floyd)

This is real music.You can feel it in you're bones.

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13 Voice of the Soul (Death)

Absolutely fantastic song. They manage to bring so much emotion and fantastic tone all in one this should be number 1.

Rock song with instrumental? Hell, this is THE best instrumental, ever. Period. Love Chuck Schuldiner

What a MasterPiece, my favorite instrumental of all times and my new anthem

Even though this has no words, this instrumental masterpiece by death metal pioneers Death is beyond any words

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14 Son of Alerik (Deep Purple)

10 min. Of pure ausomeness richie is badass

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15 Highschool Lover (Air) UListen to Sample
16 Comfortably Numb (Pink Floyd)

This is also not a instrumental - Sabbath

This Song is so good, its like a poem with a great solo.

This is not an instrument you idiot

Iii Have Become

Comfortably Numb

Oh, I love this song so much. It deserves to be higher for sure because it really means something if you know what I mean.

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17 Stairway to Heaven (Led Zeppelin)

The description states "the song can have lyrics, as long as it has an instrumental part". - JoLeKosovo

This isn't an instrumental.

This song is not an instrumental, but it is brilliant.

This is NOT, and NEVER WILL BE, an instrumental.

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18 Trampled Under Foot (Led Zeppelin)

While all these songs are good, they are not instrumental formgods sake!

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19 Pretty Little Ditty (Red Hot Chili Peppers) UListen to Sample
20 Crimson Tide and Deep Blue Sea (Nightwish)

Best instrumental song ever, no question.

The best instrumental by the best rock group, no doubt. One of the best cover songs ever. It takes one's soul to the deeps of the oceans.

21 La Villa Strangiato (Rush)

Greatest instrumental track in my opinion, but for everyone else’s info complaining this list is dedicated to the instrumentals of any song, not songs that are only instrumentals. The description of the list states this

What is wrong with the voters? Have they ever listened to this masterpiece? Any place lower than 2nd is witless! This song has one of the best guitar solo ever made. But the problem is, most of the listeners of this generation don't know music. They tend to know the most popular band and go with them. Orion and La Villa Strangiato are the best instrumentals ever.

Best song by Rush, one of the best of all time and No 20, behind Stairway to heaven which ISN'T AN INSTRUMENTAL

Just here it once and you will change your mind. The alex lifeson solo is godlike.

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22 Transylvania (Iron Maiden)

Why the heck can this be down here? This should be 1st overall 3rd minimum

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23 Misirlou (Dick Dale) UListen to Sample
24 Time to Wake Up (30 Seconds to Mars)

30 seconds to mars has diversity in their songs, this ones the best

25 Moby Dick (Led Zeppelin)

INSTRUMENTALS ARE ARE SONGS Without VOCALS. Stairway to heaven and free bird are not instrumentals you stupid morons.

This a good instrumental from well known band,what the heck adding song that is not an instrumental

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26 Baba O'Riley (The Who)

Not a instrumental what the hell - CalebMusic

This song has one of the greatest riffs ever, in all of its simplicity.
Oh, and it also has a violin solo.

Not instrumental. - zxm

Great song, NOT AN INSTRUMENTAL

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27 Little Martha (The Allman Brothers Band)

What a great acoustic masterpiece!

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28 Stream of Consciousness (Dream Theater)

Nothing better on this Planet

This and DoE are probably the best instrumentals I've ever listened to. Dream Theater is certainly a ground-breaking band when it comes to pure musicianship... Just can't beat em. Can't believe this is below New Divide by Linkin Park of all things (which, like the posters above me pointed out, isn't even an instrumental), let alone not on the top ten. But anyways whatever, DT will never get the recognition they deserve it seems, and I'm just glad that me and some others can comprehend the master musicianship they have to offer. Amazing Song.

Many of you failed to understand the term "instrumental". Instrumental=no vocals!

How is this 26. Should be top 5 just because Van Halen, Metallica, and rush is well known doesn't mean they have the best instrumental. I love orion but this is my favorite

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29 Frankenstein (Edgar Winter) UListen to Sample
30 One (Metallica)

Great song, not an instrumental though

Not an instrumental

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31 Into the Lungs of Hell (Megadeth) UListen to Sample
32 New Divide (Linkin Park)

Who was stupid enough to put this song in this list and who is stupid enough to vote it? This song isn't instrumental, and besides, this isn't even one of the best linking park songs...

Chester with his amazing voice again mesmerizing in this song with the music in background really really awesome song indeed.

Transformers for the win

New divide lovely song love you Linkin Park

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33 Suicide & Redemption (Metallica)

Hard to pick just 1 Metallica instrumental, they're all amazing, this get my vote, just - Fixxxer

I haven't sensed as much emotion in an instumental since To Live Is To Die. Suicide And Redemtion not only makes me feel like a badass with its heavy riffs, but can also help calm you down with the clean and soft center.

This song is also a perfect example of how not all good solos are fast. It really shows you how smart James Hetfield is, working the first solo.

I can listen it over and over again. - kkkppp

One of the best instrumental sonngs, it has a killing guitar graet bass and drums thhat join together on a grat melody. Any one should listen to this magnific song you wont loose your time. Good job Metallica

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34 For the Love of God (Steve Vai)

I love this all time greatest melodies rocking instrumental rock and blues. It is the finest work of steve vai till the date. I recommend this song for all listeners at least one time to listen and enjoy it!

Total Masterpiece from Vai. Epic depiction of effortlessness and the feel one can bring out from an electric guitar.

Reminds me of something you'd hear from David Gilmour, so in other words, this song is a masterpiece.

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35 Free Bird (Lynyrd Skynyrd)

The first 5 minutes build up to the famous five minute guitar solo

There is no song better than this song. The way the Band worked up the song is just amazing. The slide guitar play is the best I have ever heard and the play of the rest of the Band at the fast part is not to be denied.
This is a song that really got the crowd going but that is not the only reason it is so great. It is great because of the aforementioned facts.

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36 Red (King Crimson) UListen to Sample
37 Cliffs of Dover (Eric Johnson)

The best instrumental and amazing composition, you can be invested in this song more than songs with a full band because the guitar is amazing and better than many other songs. Eruption should be #2 - lntxp01

Cliffs of Dover is among the best in my opinion, and definitely deserves a top 10 spot.

Cliffs of dover is in top20 in greatest guitar solos of all time by rolling stone magazine... This is the most unfair thing ever...

Listen to this song and you'll know why it's the best instrumental ever created. Ever. Awesome solo

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38 Dee (Ozzy Osbourne) UListen to Sample
39 Brother - Pearl Jam UListen to Sample
40 Black Sabbath - Fluff UListen to Sample
41 Genghis Khan (Iron Maiden) UListen to Sample
42 Beck's Bolero (Jeff Beck) UListen to Sample
43 Takillya (Black Label Society) UListen to Sample
44 Don't Start (Too Late) (Black Sabbath) UListen to Sample
45 Tornado of Souls (Megadeth)

Also not an instrumental, great solo though

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46 Dialectic Chaos (Megadeth) UListen to Sample
47 This is How I Disappear (My Chemical Romance)

My Chemical Romance has best songs one of his song This Is How I Disappear has great instrumental rock music. so my request is to checkout this! I'm sure you'll add this legend song!

Not really an instrumental but its still very good! The guitars are very good on record and even better live. Drums are just as good.

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48 The Kill (30 Seconds To Mars) UListen to Sample
49 Marooned (Pink Floyd)

So beautiful and yet depressing. Makes the hairs on my neck stand up

Marooned is so beautiful, I think it deserves higher rank then 52.

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50 Nightmare (Avenged Sevenfold)

I don't get this list. Almost half of songs here aren't instrumental. Is is about rock songs with great instrumental uses where vocals doesn't matter? - zxm

A7X's best song to date, up there with the best songs ever written for mainstream metal - mafree

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List Stats

3,000 votes
191 listings
11 years, 249 days old

Top Remixes (7)

1. Soothsayer (Buckethead)
2. Orion (Metallica)
3. YYZ (Rush)
generalgrieco
1. Black Sabbath - Fluff
2. Takillya (Black Label Society)
3. Dee (Ozzy Osbourne)
Sabbath
1. Orion (Metallica)
2. The Call of Ktulu (Metallica)
3. Any Colour You Like (Pink Floyd)
jimicenafromintempo

WRemix
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