Best Live Rock Albums

Live rock albums that capture the essence of the original studio recordings with the added power of a live show, and which has stood the test of time.

The Top Ten

1 Absolutely Live - Rod Stewart

At this concert Rod brought Tina Turner back in to the limelights.

2 Made In Japan - Deep Purple

The best

Should be #1

The best live album of the 70s from the best band live of the 70s. - Metal_Treasure

3 Live at Leeds - The Who

It simply knocks Live/Dead out of the way!

Just legendary

Only No. 3? How can anything be better than this?

Only 22? This is by far the best live rock album ever made!

4 Live After Death - Iron Maiden
5 Unleashed In the East - Judas Priest

Simply the greatest live album by the greatest band. No competition

6 Celebration Day - Led Zeppelin

A 2007 reunion concert that shows three of the four original members (Jason Bonham taking the place of his late father) in tighter form than on their 70's heyday live recordings. - CharlieBrown

All living members of Led Zeppelin unite for one epic show with Jason Bonham (John Bonham's son.) on drums. It really was a celebration day.

I got this up to 1st place! YAY! - UsernameHere

7 Double Live Gonzo - Ted Nugent

A truly amazing live album that captures the craze of 70s' rock music

Captures the Motor City Madman at his finest. His guitar playing is amazing! He can go from loud and fast, to bluesy, to very melodic. I have never heard sounds come from a guitar like those on Hibernation. Great White Buffalo will give you goose bumps. Classics like Motor City Madhouse, Stranglehold, Cat Scratch Fever, etc. - CharlieBrown

8 Alive! - Kiss

This is the album that saved kiss when they were broke and ready to call it quits, should be number one

Actually offers the definitive versions of the best of KISS' first three studio albums, including Rock and Roll All Night. Many of today's rock guitar gods cut their teeth on this album trying to copy every lick; every Ace Frehley lead. You could hand this album to Martians and explain that "this IS rock and roll." - CharlieBrown

9 Live Bootleg - Aerosmith

This album captures the sounds of an actual live concert, mistakes and all and every song kicks ass!

Kick ass live chip away the stone and draw the line

Back when Aerosmith could plug in, turn it up to 11, and rock out. Hits like Dream On, Sweet Emotion, Walk This Way, Back in the Saddle, etc. - CharlieBrown

10 Captured - Journey

Yes, Journey. They were an amazing live band. Awesome musicians playing the hits like Lovin' Touching' Squeezin' and Anyway You Want It and allowed a little more freedom here to jam like on songs like Walks Like a Lady and Dixie Highway. Steve Perry's voice is just as amazing here as on the studio albums too. Listen to his voice leading up to the Do You Recall guitar solo, and in the background of the Wheel in the Sky guitar solo. Otherworldly! - CharlieBrown

Oh yes, Steve Perry is one of the several singers who often sounded even better live. - Metal_Treasure

The Contenders

11 One More From the Road - Lynyrd Skynyrd

A 13 minute version of Free Bird, hello! - CharlieBrown

12 Live / Dead - Grateful Dead
13 Live - Barclay James Harvest

Summer Soldier/Medicine Man is my favourite "side" of Vinyl!

Fantastic band, great set. So underrated all excellent mucisians and songwriters with three great vocalists.

Raw, progressive, melodic... just excellent. Long before they became a little syrupy.

14 World Wide Live - Scorpions

One of the best live rock albums ever. The version of Big City Nights on this album is BETTER than the recorded version. The rest of the double vinyl album is just as incredible.

15 Pulse - Pink Floyd

My goodness! This is too horribly low! This has to be higher! It's maybe the embodiment of all Pink Floyd! From Piper all the way to Division Bell! - higgsboson2142

16 How the West Was Won - Led Zeppelin

An incredible live album that shows the greatest rock band ever at the height of their live powers. All four members were at the top of their game and in perfect sync. Should be much higher.

17 Ozzy Osbourne - Randy Rhoads Tribute

Randy kills it on this album - Sabbath

18 S&M - Metallica

WHY IN THE HECK IS THIS SO LOW ON THE LIST! This has got to be one of the best live albums ever. Not just rock but period! The way the sound just fills the stadium is awesome. This is such a great way that metallica changed up their sound and gave us something unique is in my mind unparalleled.

19 The Song Remains the Same - Led Zeppelin
20 MTV Unplugged - Eric Clapton

This album is one of the main reasons I believe he's the one of the greatest guitarists to ever live so I'll say what I said there - I honestly can't believe this isn't number one on the list. This album and really all of Clapton's music is so personal to me and so many millions of people in this world who've been inspired to pick up a guitar because of him. I remember never particularly liking the guitar as an instrument, whether it was to play with or to listen to, but this alubm and his "A Benefit For The Crossroads Centre In Antigua 1999 Live At Madison Square Garden Concert" changed everything for me. From Layla to Old Love, Tears In Heaven to Before You Accuse Me, even though he wrote them such a long time ago, you can hear the emotion and sadness going through every word and every note he plays on his guitar. Although he did sing Tears In Heaven for the album just a year after son passed, it was the most raw and emotional song you'll ever here. Honestly that's the ...more - guyritchi

Best album ever

Love this album

21 Imaginations Through the Looking Glass - Blind Guardian
22 Peter Frampton - Frampton Comes Alive

Definitive versions of many of his earlier songs, many which became massive hits like Show Me the Way, Baby I Love Your Way, and Do You Feel Like We Do (stoke up those Zippos! ). Great guitar too. - CharlieBrown

8? This list is an insult

23 At Fillmore East - The Allman Brothers Band

If this is not in your top three you don't know music.

24 Get Yer Ya Yas Out - Rolling Stones

Captures their then lead guitarist Mick Taylor in all his melodic, six string glory. Let's be honest, most consider the Mick Taylor period to be the Stones' best.

25 Foghat Live

The very best live album for me...When it came out I think in 77 it was being played everywhere...Foghat put this album out at the right time because Slow Ride was still being played on Rock n roll fm stations every day and the live version of I just want to make love to you was a hit again...If anyone has ever been to a Foghat live show in the 1970s will tell you that that album is as close as it gets to being there...FIVE STARS!

Only a single live album when everyone was putting out double live albums, but it doesn't matter because what it makes up for in length, it makes up for in energy. High octane versions of Fool For the City, Slow Ride, I Just Want to Make Love to You, a well as other boogie-woogie foot stompers. Crank it up! - CharlieBrown

26 Under a Blood Red Sky - U2
27 On Stage - Rainbow

This album is amazing, every song is outstanding capturing two of the greatest musicians ever at their finest. The songs absolutely come to life and top the studio recordings

28 MTV Unplugged - Nirvana

Where did you sleep last night?

29 The Last Stand - Cold Chisel
30 The Bootleg Series, Volume 4: Live 1966: The “Royal Albert Hall” Concert - Bob Dylan
31 At Folsom Prison - Johnny Cash

Best live country album ever!

32 Live at the Rainbow '74 - Queen
33 Strangers in the Night - UFO

UFO at their absolute best.

The best live album you never heard. Few bands sound better live. These guys were about to become huge - like Bad Company and Foreigner.

...tell me about it.

34 Alchemy Live - Dire Straits
35 Live at River Plate - AC/DC
36 Live at Reading - Nirvana
37 Jimi Plays Monterey - Jimi Hendrix
38 The Last Waltz - The Band With Friends
39 Live at Monterey - The Jimi Hendrix Experience
40 Sam Cooke - Live at Harlem Square Club, 1963
41 Yessongs - Yes



42 Live: Right Here, Right Now - Van Halen

Sammy Hagar on vocals love the live acoustic version of Give to Live

43 Live - Blind Guardian
44 Concert for George - Various Artists
45 Unplugged - Alice In Chains

Better then Nirvana unplugged - Sabbath

46 Live In New York City - John Lennon
47 Aloha from Hawaii Via Satellite - Elvis Presley

The resurrected King in top form before his sad demise/premature end. His voice is incredible and he COMMANDS the stage. Many of the folks on this list would not be here if it weren't for Elvis.

48 Live Era: '87-'93 - Guns N' Roses
49 Live Rust - Neil Young
50 Live and Dangerous - Thin Lizzy

71? It should be number one. Nobody ever topped Thin Lizzy.

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List Stats

800 votes
74 listings
5 years, 277 days old

Top Remixes (9)

1. Live / Dead - Grateful Dead
2. Live at Leeds - The Who
3. Made In Japan - Deep Purple
1. Made In Japan - Deep Purple
2. Live After Death - Iron Maiden
3. Imaginations Through the Looking Glass - Blind Guardian
1. Made In Japan - Deep Purple
2. Live at Leeds - The Who
3. Live at Monterey - The Jimi Hendrix Experience

View All 9

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