Top 10 Greatest Metal Bassists
The Top Ten
Cliff was really a great bassist. Not that others on this list are bad. But Cliff was really an epic bassist. (also an epic musician).
I think Cliff is the reason Metallica is so successful today. Cliff made Metallica what it is today. If Cliff hadn't died so early, Metallica would have been an even greater Band. (not saying that jason and rob are bad).
As Flea(bassist of red hot chilli peppers) rightly said-"This* was a great moment in the history of electric bass guitar. "
*this refers to the moment when Cliff composed 'Anesthesia-Pulling Teeth'
A lot of people may say that Cliff is overrated but bear in mind that he was only 24 when he passed away and he was already a beast with more years of experience he would've been unstoppable
Innovator and pioneer, he made playing bass even cooler( no knocks go to the greats Geezer and and lemmy) but what this man did with a bass guitar was epic and gave you goosebumps every time you listened to any of his eye melting solos!
Based on where Metallica was going musically with Cliff they could have been even bigger than they already are. Cliff Burton is the best bassist in metal history. Rest in peace, your memory will live on.
He is the best heavy metal bassist. He is most known for his "galloping" playing style. He has unique techniques which nobody can copy. He is also a great song writer.
Cliff was incredible, but Harris is essential for Maiden. His presence, career and songwriting prove why he is the best metal bassist
Cliff is the trendy pick because of Metallica.
Metallica is played on the radio much more than Iron Maiden ever has. Cliff was very good but he's not deserving of #1.
Steve Harris is phenomenal. It's hard to pull Burton's bass out of a Metallica song as it's being played. Harris on the other hand you can always hear his galloping bass.
He and Burton truely deserves to be in top 2. You can shift both players around the 1st and 2nd position and it won't matter to me. I voted for harris because Burton is already at number 1. Metallic Maiden 4 Life... I'll piss on you if you disagree!
I get that he's not considered the greatest bassist of all time (but I still believe he's the best), he's at least without a doubt the greatest metal bassist! Most creative by far. Listen to Black Sabbath's solos in their earlier songs (Sweet Leaf and War Pigs are great examples). Geezer just goes insane and it sounds absolutely amazing. His tone is also my favourite by far. If it weren't for Geezer, I'm not even sure if Black Sabbath would be my favourite band (Iommi is still a riff god so probably). Cliff Burton is massively overrated but I admit Steve Harris comes close on this one.
These Metallica and megadeth fans seem to outnumber the traditional metal fans. They neglect Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, who CREATED HEAVY METAL. Infact, every metal band is influenced by Black Sabbath. Cliff Burton himself was influenced by Geezer Butler and Steve Harris.
Gezzer rules the best watch live and YOU WILL SEE! - mentalfeed70
AWESOME! He allowed Sabbath to pwn without a rythm guitarist.
solid bassplayer, very underrated. Although guitarwork in megadeth is excellent, there's always a solid bass behind this. When women say: behind every good man stands a better woman, they actually mean this.
To me, David Ellefson is the best Metal bassist; the first time I heard the Peace Sells album, I was blown away, I didn't even know what he was doing, and he influenced my style with his sound and technique on albums: Peace Sells, So Far... RIP and Countdown. I met him once, he is a helluva nice dude, I even got a few emails from him; his favorite Beatles song is "Day Tripper" because it's riff driven. David Ellefson #1 for influence, Cliff Burton is tops for inspiration. John Myung may be a brilliant musician, but I don't like his bass style, it just seems to finesse and not really heavy, in attitude I mean, he always looks in a happy zone when he's playing, real Metal bassists want to kick your A$$!
Megadeth is the big 4 band that a lot of guitarist and real musicians like, because of their technical supeiriority over many other band in the era. The guitar work of Dave Mustaine and Marty Freidman or Chris Poland or whichever line the particular song has, over shadows the band bass player, David Ellefson. A very underrated bassist. It seems to me that most top 10 list leave him out or put him at the bottom, for what reason I don't know. Listen to the peace sells album, or countdown, or rust in peace. Enough Said.
Listening to David Ellefson explain his playing philosophy is a master class in bass performance. Like Geddy Lee (for example) he knows exactly how to fill in the band's sound with his instrument--from driving the drum kit's rhythm into your skull to putting a nice thick bottom end on the guitar work. Plus his tone is monstrous. Anyone that can cut through a Mike Clink "wall of sound" mix has some serious balls in his sound.
Imagine voting Cliff Burton or Steve Harris over John Myung - DenyYourMaker
john myung has more bass playing power in his little finger than cliff burton could dream of having. I learned pulling teeth in like 2 days I have yet to completely learn a dream theater song all the way through! genious!
Metrolopolis pt. 1, Panic Attack, and many more! No need to list songs to tell that he's probably the best bassist ever! Followed with Markus Grosskopf (Helloween - listen to Eagle Fly Free, Halloween and Keeper of The Seven Keys, then understand what I'm saying) and Cliff Burton
No matter what others say, he is the best bassist in this list...believe it or not, he can play two bass solos at one time...isn't it great! Can steve harris or cliff burton can do that? No...because john myung is way more professional than those two players...he deserves number 1
When you want to talk about actual talent and not name recognition then talk about Steve.
Amazing bass player. Great stage presence. Always a pleasure to watch on stage.
One of the greatest (if not the best) bass players of all time. Just take a look at the bands he's been in. A very talented guy. He has technique, speed, and diversity. Should at least be in the top 5
Why the hell is Steve at 24 and Pantera's bassist and Bullet For My Valentine's bassist are above him? An amazing bassist.
Just amazing. His work on schism, 46 & 2, and others is just Phenomenal. And not only is he a good bassist, but also a good writer and musician. How have I not reached minimum quality yet? Stupid computer doesn't know what quality is.
Justin plays his bass with the prowess of a lead guitarist. His bass lines are more technical than a lot of guitar riffs from other bands. He contributes so much style and musicality to the band without overshadowing the other members. You would not have the TOOL sounds without him
I find it hard to believe that Johnny Christ is ahead of this beast, Justin belongs in the first 10 just for his work in Lateralus alone, not even referencing the other amazing albums he was in...
Guys justin has done a beautiful job in every song like 46 & 2,lateralus,vicarius and the pot that it is really difficult for everyone to play as a bass player I can see that he has experience and he should be in the top 5
Why is he not on this list already? He may come from a different age but you can't deny that back in the day, RAtM delivered some of the most effective metal bass lines ever. And he was a beast live.
One of the most underestimated bass players, but has awesome funk, hip hop groove mixed with brutal and inimitable tone!
He has to be on this list, he creates great background for Tom and his stunts
One of my favourite bass players, really fun to play along to
OK kids, Primus are an alternative metal band, so I can see why Les isn't gonna be getting number 1 but jesus, he's by far the most talented bassist on this list, he should at least be top 10. Go listen to Tommy the Cat just to see how talented this guy is, and then vote Primus!
Without any doubt at all, Les Claypool should be #1 on this list, go listen to "Jerry was a race car driver" and My Name is Mud" then you'll believe why he is indeed the best bass player
Unquestionably the best bassist to roam the earth, even though Justin Chancellor is my favourite bassist, Claypool is inarguably the most talented and innovative player on the list.
He is a metal bassist, Primus isn't a metal band but he used to be in the Prog Thrash band Blind Illusion he even played on their first studio album. - christangrant
Rob is a monster on that 5-Stringer of his! He is a veteran bass player with groundbreaking skills, but then again, you would need them to be in Metallica right?
Brilliant bassist that is totally undermined by the metal community. Please, he is much, much better than Newsted and although he might not be better than Cliff Burton, he can definitely play faster than Burton. He has added an additional heaviness to metallica and should definitely be in the top 8. Listen to his cover of Anasthesia (Pulling teeth), what a fitting tribute to Burton!
His style adds an awesome primal sound to Metallica's music. Hiring Robert Trujillo was the best thing they could have done!
Rob's galloping style has contributed a lot to Metallica's songs. Metallica's recent live performances sound a lot heavier and more brutal because of Rob. He may not be the best bassist of all time, but he's certainly one guy you can never ever write off. His name is definitely there, along with the likes of Burton, Butler, Steve Harris and Ellefson.
He has one of the most unique styles of bass in the entire genre. His baselines are powerhouses, and he normalized the bass solo. While he's probably not above Steve Harris, he should def be in top five.
Lemmy is not even my top pic... but #10 on a list of best metal bassists? HOW? STOP IT
The face of the whole band and the speed Metal genre!
Has his own brand. Very best at what he does.
I think he was better that cliff and Rob because cliff played the bass like a guitar. Also Jason was able to play with a pick, fingers, slap, and tapping. He is a great frontman and played and sang. Jason wrote guitar riffs, and had a bigger impact on Metallica than Rob has. I think he should be second place to cliff Burton. Jason is really overshadowed.
Jason did more for Metallica than Rob( no offense) I think he should be 2nd to Cliff. Plus he's the better backup vocalist no doubt
Unfortunately Jason is overshadowed by Cliff Burton and therefore he is underrated as a bassist. In fact I think his bass lines are far better than cliff's (That being said Cliff's solo's were amazing) and rhythm playing over solo "Lead bass playing," if you will that Cliff used to do. And how can you argue with the guy who screams "DIE, DIE, DIE" like he's satan or something?
I do feel sorry for Newsted, for one Metallica constantly hazed him and two he had to walk into Cliff's place an impossible job for anyone no matter how technically gifted they are.
I've never heard of any bassist this amazing, ever. His playing is absolutely amazing and sheerly breath taking!
Talas wasn't very good metal band, but bassist billy Sheehan is probably most prolific bassist ever
Should be number 1 - gemcloben
Should be at least in the top 10
Take the Steve Harris style of finger playing, and apply it to thrash metal. The result is something similar to what Frankie Bello gives you: solid, pumping, bright and fluid, adding a layer beyond and behind, yet distinct from Scott Ian's massive rhythm guitar parts.
Hey guys! 21?! Seriously? Have you listened to Frank's job on Got the Time or Caught in a Mosh?
Caught in a Mosh, Got the Time, Intro to Reality, some examples of his skill on bass so he should really be in the top 10
Come On! Frank is Great.
Way underrated. He should be in the top 10. The song writing. The live presence and damn that bass tone. No one has that tone and cuts across anyone that ever listen to it. It's his sound. No one has the DD sound. He maybe not be all over with being flashy but the man can hold his own
Amazing sound, technique...other than steve harris none more ingenious
Should be much, much higher on the list.
DD at #22? Got to be kidding! He belongs in the top five, no question. Possibly top three.
Great but this list is about metal bassists and Geddy is NOT metal. - Metal_Treasure
23 - Really? Not only is Geddy an intricate bass player, from an instrument standpoint. But, he also sings & plays keys, all the while still holding firm in the structure of each song. Should be in the Top 10 at the very least.
How is Geddy Lee not already on here? He plays Bass for rush which would already be hard enough, he is the lead singer of Rush, and he also plays piano for Rush! How much better can one man get?
Simply one of the very bests. I don't know how the guy of Korn is above him.
Alex Webster's technical ability is astounding. It's not just about speed, the notes he plays are shockingly melodic and clean underneath the pounding drums and shredding guitars. The break fills in Cannibal Corpse and the solos with Blotted Science is god-like wizardry. Check out the genius of Synaptic Plasticity for further proof.
Add on his song and lyric writing ability and you've got a bass GOD.
This might a little over the top, but Alex Webster to me is Death Metals Cliff Burton. He's fast as hell, one of the only original members left, never used pick in his career, and one of the top 5 headbangers in metal today.
Great technic, great feeling, amazing composer of master pieces of metal. Co-writer of several (maybe all) Cannibal Corpse songs. Co-writer of Blooted Science music. This guy must be on the first 10, I think he is not because death metal is not main stream gender.
Alex Webster only at number 26? He should at least be number 5 or so
He has so much flair when he plays, it's just amazing, not to mention he is very good at playing his instrument. The song "Deer Dance", or "Prison song": Prime examples of his skill.
Shavo plays with his own style and even playing low like he does still delivers a clear and powerful sound
The style of this guy is unbeatable! I was on their gig and he literally made love with the bass on the stage.!
I love all the bass line he played very innovative and so refreshed.
Ryan Martinie is the most underrated metal bassist of all time. He deserves to be top 10!
Ryan, in my opinion, is the best bassist there is. Cliff is good, but he's not great. Nobody would care about Cliff if it weren't for "pulling teeth" and the intro to for "for whom the bell tolls." Ryan is my favourite bassist because he is extremely technical, he stands out from every other bassist, he has a great tone, amazing writing skills, etc. He deserves to be a lot higher up on this list.
My top 3 bassists would be:
1. Ryan Martinie (mudvayne)
2. Evan Brewer (The faceless, solo)
3. Dan Briggs (Between the Buried and Me)
Incredible bassist, seriously underrated. People have a problem with wanting to fit in and be popular so usually they vote the bassist off of how successful the band is. This guy doesn't just follow the guitar. He writes bass lines that weave in and out of the guitar riffs to create beautiful music.
Can't believe he's so down in he list! I know pretty much every bassist in this list and even though Burton and Harris are better than Martinie, They're not THAT better.
The best! Listen to "Frontiers" - Symphony X (Bonus Track on The Odyssey). Tasty! Oh and everything on his solo albums (Silent Assassins)
Really unique style and incredible skills. Without a doubt, the most talented bass player I've ever been lucky enough to see live.
I've been a musician for over 30 years and this guys never fails to impress me every time I've seen him I am wowed. Great bassist!
Not only is he technically great but he plays with such feeling you can hear the emotion in every note.
Tom is amazing on the bass. Listen to War Ensemble or another fast track and the bass will blow you away.
Awesome bassist deservedly so and to see he outranks Jason newsted is awesome for how fast he plays he deserves it
In Raining Blood he plays the same way as the guitars. You have no idea how hard that is for a bassist until you try
Araya is the best
Can't believe he's on number 45! I know he plays mainly simple bass line, but check out the early stuff of Priest classic, like SIN AFTER SIN, STAINED CLASS or metal masterpiece UNLEASHED IN THE EAST, he plays basic stuff but adding some incredible melodic bass note to each songs. I think he deserve on top 10 in metal.
Top metal bass player in the world of Metal. A true legend.
At #44?! You've to to be f*cking sh#tting me people. He practically started Priest and the whole heavy metal genre! He's practically the only one, apart from Steve Harris of Iron Maiden who can truly compose great bass lines that can actually equal guitar lines (let alone two guitars, lead guitars at that) in sound and greatness.
Very underrated bass player R.I.P. - TheStargazer
He isn't just a great songwriter, backup vocalist, rhythm guitarist and lead guitarist, but a badass, technical and groovy metal bassist! He played the bass in the Meshuggah masterpiece obZen and he did a great job in it!
Have you ever heard about meshuggah? Just listen and vote for Marten.
He needs to be more well known as well as the band he plays in
Bass line in Demiurge. Need I say more?
Listen to omniscient perception by Beyond Creation and the solo
This guy is amazing, the beginning of room 101 sounds so cool. Even Though carcass Is Death Metal You Can Still Hear His Bass Perfectly Over The POWERade Guitar And drums, Reminds me of steve harris.
He is the german lemmy kilmister he is highly influenced from him that he plays the bass on the same way on thrash metal mode. the only thrash metal bassist who shares bass solos on many songs such as vice of killing, shellfire defense and many others on his classic thrash metal albums
He is 31 on this list cause deftones are less known
I can't find a band that even compares to Deftones with Chi. He was the man. Geddy Lee is an awseome technician. Steve Harris is, well Steve Harris. But Chi was driving force of the best band of all time.
How can Nikki be 39th. The guy is brilliant. He can make nothing something. He's truly brilliant
He should be way higher, he has been rocking' bass with Motley Crue for over 30 years, and with Sixx:AM for a little under 10.
Nikki is without a doubt the coolest rock star of all time!
One of the best if not the best
Rhythm genius...Great solid work...Cool Tone..Even cooler battles with Wolf Hoffmann..Way overlooked back here in Germany.
Wrote incredible songs with
Rebel Meets Rebel
Kill Devil Hill
Rex Brown band
Even though he isn't heard much over Dimebag he is still really skilled. Just listen to his work in the guitar solo in 'Floods'.
he deserves to be in the top 10... he is just not heard over Dimebag. his bass under Dimebag's solos is killing. and floods is just awesome...
Like many great metal bass players he was trained as a jazz bassist, which is evidenced by his walking bass lines underneath Dimebag's solos (check out 5 minutes alone). Should be way higher on this list
Overrated garbage. KISS is not even close to metal music but even if they were Gene wouldn't even be in the top 60. The only people who vote for him are stupid 49 year old dads who are going through a midlife crisis who have daughters that weigh more than them. Complete disgrace to rock music. - TheMETALgiant
KISS is pretty much what 13 year old sex fanatics would write songs - YeeMan
Gene simmons is not a metal bassist
Gene has been my inspiration ever since Alive! Came out. He has said that his job is to make what he has in his head come out with his playing, and he does that and then some.
Master of fretless bass - Metal_Treasure
This guy plays bass like a guitarist and totally shreds he is just as active on their albums as the guitarists and he pulls hammerons on bass!
Dude has a unique style and contributes melodically to most pieces, which is more than what most bassists do.
The tones he achieves are unmatched
I don't usually pay attention to a7x baselines, but afterlife is always going to be one of my favorites
He brings a lot of different aspects to what could be a very boring bass line. I'm glad that he spends time trying to improve the bass lines. A7X is very lucky!
Not a very incredible or outstanding bassist, but he never overplays and always sounds amazing with the rest of the band. Not to mention his signature bass is sick and he has a great bass tone.
Technically, not the best bassist, but goes perfectly with other members of Avenged Sevenfold.
X best band ever.. Taiji was a good bassist too though
Heath - San is a great bassist with a fascinatin style. He often looks very elegant on stage and remebers me to a tiger, also in his style. He can play a bass, that you even will forget, that he's playing it, 'cauze he's able to let a bass sounding like a guitar. Than his shows... As a solo - artist also as while his solos. They are great. And Heath - San is really hot (^_^).
Depends on what you're talking about. If he plays slap bass then he is usually a funk type of bassists. If you are talking about his finger picking bassists, sometimes he's metal bassist. - zxm
The best bassist of Asia! He should be at top 20 at least
He's bass playing is adorable... He's slapping is too good... He's the man who made bass the strongest part of his band's songs... You should hear... Guti, Nikrishto, Shurjo... Then you will say yes... That is Bassbaba (Father of bass)...
Your solos are super cool
Highly underrated, driving force for the rhythmically based FNM, which had an incredible influence on alternative and nu-metal going forward. Doesn't quite have the clean-cut kind of style that the higher-ups on this list have, but phenomenal nonetheless.
Billy Gould is hands down my favorite bassist just listen to his work in woodpecker from mars
Listen to Epic. During the solo - Userguy44
Extremely underrated! - Relixx599
This guy kicks mighty ass, not to mention that he can keep up with Mark and Willie. Awesome example of a 'team player' bassist.
Shall be in top 10
The fills this guy pulls off are oustanding
Lamb of god rulesm/
Is Funny Cool And Nice and is Great With Hist Path Of bass and is he have a great voice screamo... Believe what he's a good bassist for that he have to sty in this list of the best bassist
Awesome bassist. But he is not only a bassist he also provides back-up vocals to help out the great Matt Tuck. Bullet for my Valentine are awesome and everything they do is great.
Best bassist and vocalist he is in second no of my list after matt tuck vote him guys he don't deserves to be in 17 position
Best bassist and screamer
Fretless bass player - Metal_Treasure
He should definitely be in the top 20! - CenturyChild
45? Are you kidding me? - Disturbedpotato
Very talented guy
Very special with his 'simple' style.
Aslo a very good singer!
There are better bass players but Marco belongs certainly to the top 20
I actually cannot understand why Forest Lapointe comes after something like fifty other bass players who, having of course been important for the genre, are not nearly close to his level. This man's technique is what every bass player should dream to reach, and it's truly sad to see how his skill is not recognized as much as it deserves.
Dude, this guy is amazing
This guy should be way higher than this
His technique is amazing. He should be 1st in the list.
Like all of the members from Mastodon not widely known, therefore never high in these kind of lists. All 4 members are exceptional on their respective instruments and based on skill Troy Sanders is on par with players like Steve Harris and Cliff Burton. Should be at least top 10
He's not the best, but some songs are amazing and he deserves the 10 or 11 position.
Killrbe killed op
Listen to his side project Bassinvaders. enough said
Check out her new band STAR & DAGGER they kick ass
In "More Human than Human" and "Thunder Kiss '65" she is great