Top 10 Greatest Metal BassistsOzzyVanHalen
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'
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.
Cliff Burton defined what Metallica stood for... Look at the first three albums they made with him and the rest without... The later ones lack the creativity of the master musician... Pity he couldn't contribute more to metal and Metallica... Rip cliff
The only word I can say about him is that he is amazing.V 92 Comments
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.
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!
Not only is he an amazing bassist (he and Burton definitely deserving the top two), but he is also a very talented song writer. He is the Mozart of modern music, writing the majority of music for Iron Maiden himself.
Steve Harris is my number one, with Cliff Burton at a very close second. - MetarockV 91 Comments
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.
Gezzer rules the best watch live and YOU WILL SEE! - mentalfeed70
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.
This bassist is part of the best band in history. He plays like there is no tomorrow, and he can come up with awesome riffs. I do not need to say much to get the point across do I?V 23 Comments
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.
He showed another dimension for metal bass...and how to create groovy bassline not just following guitar notesV 25 Comments
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
John Myung I way better than Cliff Burton and Steve Harris combined. He should be in the top 3 alongside David Ellefson and Geezer Butler. Also I'm not saying cliff and Steve are bad. I'm just saying John Is better. - 12ccV 27 Comments
The face of the whole band and the speed Metal genre!
Actually, I vote for cliff..'cause he inspired me..but lemmy? Don't forget, cliff also inspired by him..Geddy, Geezer, Lemmy, and Phil Lynott..those man were cliff's influences..and I like lemmy's technique, he's a unique bass player..
Has his own brand. Very best at what he does.
The face of speed metal and motorhead and a complete badass. Who says bassists don't get the girls? #borntolose #livedtowin #longlivelemmy - FatTurtleGamezV 14 Comments
When you want to talk about actual talent and not name recognition then talk about Steve.
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.
"The eternal hippy of all that is fretless" as Chuck Schuldiner would say. Great bass player who brought another dimension to many albumns. Not really a mainstay in any band, but you could always pick him out on any album he was on. Just solid.V 8 Comments
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...
He's a very talented person and if your looking for good bass lines he's the one to go for and I also think Chris Wolstenholme(muse) should be higherV 16 Comments
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.
Not as good as Cliff Burton, but you have to respect him for the awesome bass lines on The Black Album, and his work on Load really is the only saving grace of a pretty lackluster album. A great live player, and his new project, Newsted, released a simply phenomenal debut album.
Good basist godly backing vocalsV 15 Comments
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!
Not as good as Cliff, but excellent bassist. - PhoenixAura81V 26 Comments
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
He really funks this bandV 1 Comment
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!
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
Not metal bassist - DisturbedpotatoV 10 Comments
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.
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.
FRANK RULES BITCHESV 4 Comments
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
The king.V 7 Comments
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
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.
Gene simmons is not a metal bassist
Simmons' only claim to fame is the crazy stuff he does at concerts. His bass playing is not one of those. - FatTurtleGamezV 4 Comments
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.
I love her technics, power slaps I like itV 14 Comments
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
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.!
Extremely underrated. Listen to "Prison Song" or "Mind" or "Suite Pee" - TheMETALgiantV 4 Comments
Check out her new band STAR & DAGGER they kick ass
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?
Great but this list is about metal bassists and Geddy is NOT metal. - Metal_Treasure
Rush is NOT metal, come on people.V 6 Comments
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.
A lot like Steve Harris in being a technicallly blessed player and extremely proficient songwriter.V 15 Comments
Fieldy has one of the most unique sounds ever, I can't think of anyone who can play the bass tuned down so low as fieldy and still sound so good.
Truly the best bassist ever
His slap is awesome and his bass-playing style is inimitable
Watching him play live is just insane. This man knows how to play basssV 4 Comments
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.
Improves every album and is the fearless leader of Avenged Sevenfold.V 11 Comments
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
Extremely Underrated and overshadowed by Dimebag and Phil Anselmo with a very Diverse career
Rebel Meets Rebel
Kill Devil Hill
Rex Brown Band
Check out the Rex Brown Band killer ROCK record
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.
Bass line in Demiurge. Need I say more?V 1 Comment
Very underrated bass player R.I.P. - TheStargazer
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.
Really militarian bass - OdinestV 1 Comment
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 screamerV 1 Comment
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 bestV 5 Comments
Master of fretless bass - Metal_Treasure
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 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.
Fretless bass player - Metal_Treasure
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 (^_^).
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
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)...
Just awsam bass player... If you not heard him... Go to to youtube and heard guti the finale, guti from hell... If you r bass lover you'll sure love it..V 5 Comments
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/
Billy Gould is hands down my favorite bassist just listen to his work in woodpecker from mars
I think that Slipknot is successful because of Paul Gray and other band members. This guy was an awesome bassist.
It is, sorry it wasn't :(, just his playing. He was an incredible guy, too. So for sure, Harris or Burton are technical perfect players, but no one will ever have the aura of Paul. So Rest in Piece Bro, can't believe its nearly four years now, that you are gone. Still missing you.
he is always number one... R.I.P paul gray...
you will always be inside of my heart...
His so overrated it's not funny, Use are only voting for him because he died, and was in slipknot.V 20 Comments
Incredible fingerstyle skills! Hardly any other bassist plays with so much precision at such a high speed. If this was an accurate list, the top three would be Cliff Burton, John Myung and Michael Lepond!
Listen to his solos in Egypt and Seven and you will understand.
Technically speaking, he's incredible; listen to Sea of Lies or Domination, that's all that's needed
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.
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.
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
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.V 1 Comment
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.V 1 Comment
A fantastic bassist with excellent technique and exceptionally fluid playing. He incorporates many different styles into his playing, and his tapping is incredible.
Dan Briggs is a very talented bassist. I mean look at his work on colors, it's absolutely amazing.
Dan briggs is a brilliant bassist, don't believe me, listen to viridian by between the buried and me
This man and Ryan martinie are my two favourites and HAVE to be up there in top few. These men have the skills to pay them little gimmicks they keep sending in the mail called 'bills'
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Top Remixes (21)
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