Top 10 Metal Bands That Created Subgenres


The Top Ten

1 Black Sabbath 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. more.

Black Sabbath created Doom Metal.
Soon It would spawn many other subgenres of Metal. Including Sludge Metal, Gothic Metal, Drone Metal, And Stoner Metal/Rock - MegadethFan07

You could also say Sabbath created a subgenre in the form of metal. It's a half-truth but it kinda makes sense...?
Kinda. - AdamDestructorJr.

Black Sabbath darkness influenced gothic metal but it's quite exaggerated to say they created it. Gothic Metal was created circa 1990 by Paradise Lost, My Dying Bride, Anathema and Type O Negative.

Besides Black Sabbath, some other early bands influenced gothic metal - Deep Purple, Rainbow, Dio and Judas Priest. Deep Purple's song "Stormbringer" has been called a "goth metal treasure".
The "vaguely medieval, minor-key sounds" of Rainbow, Dio and Judas Priest has also been described as "gothic" prior to "the emergence of goth rock as a post-punk genre".

You can read that in the Wiki article about Gothic metal. - Metal_Treasure

They were the first Heavy Metal band, that much is clear. They also directly inspired and created many subgenres
-Doom Metal
-Stoner Metal
-Gothic Metal
-Sludge Metal
-Lyrical aspects of Black Metal - ryanrimmel

2 Death Death Death was an American death metal band formed in 1983 by Chuck Schuldiner. Death is considered to be one of the most influential bands in heavy metal and a pioneering force in death metal. Its debut album, Scream Bloody Gore, has been widely regarded as the first death metal record, while the band's more.

I’d say that Possessed and Death are both the Creators of Death Metal. Like how Deep Purple, Black Sabbath, And Led Zeppelin are considered the creators of Heavy Metal. - MegadethFan07

There has always been a debate about who the first Death Metal band ever was. Either Death or Possessed (They formed in the same year). I personally think Death wins this one, due to the fact that they were Pure Death Metal and had the genre named after them. - ryanrimmel

Founded death metal. Too easy. - Metalhead1997

No. Mostly Possessed did it with an album but there were death metal songs by other bands even before Possessed's album. - Metal_Treasure

In fact was the combination of early works of Venom, Hellhammer and others that give birth to death metal, but Possessed (1984 1st album) show in the scene a few years before Death (1987 1st album) and the ghastly voice and rhythm of Becerra it's so different than the gutural and powerful voice of Chuck, Possessed was the first band of death metal but Death defined as we now today

3 Deep Purple 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, more.

The creators of metal in general as we know today. - Userguy44

I don't know why Deep Purple are so underrated as metal creators, while Black Sabbath - so overrated (no disrespect to them). Tony Iommi always corrects journalists when they start with "you are the Godfather of metal". He always says "I was, or Black Sabbath were, one of the Godfathers". Tony Iommi knows the truth and I hope one day he will tell who is THE Godfather/ Father of metal. It's Ritchie Blackmore - his DNA is everywhere in metal music. - Metal_Treasure

You said it yourself; They are one OF the Godfathers. There is no sole one. - SoldierOfFortune

Invented the template for metal music in general - non bluesy, classically inspired, fast and loud rock music (hard rock is bluesy). This is the basis of ALL metal subgenres, except doom and stoner.
Speed metal was the most emphasized subgenre but they also created the first songs in other subgenres - 'Stormbringer' was called a "goth metal treasure".

Speed metal - Highway Star, Hard Lovin' Man, Fireball, Speed King
Heavy metal - Burn, Black Night, Perfect Strangers
Gothic metal - Stormbringer (called by experts a "goth metal treasure")
Epic metal - Child In Time
Symphonic/ Neo-classical/ Progressive metal - April; Concerto for Group and Orchestra (1969, Live album by Deep Purple and The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra).

Metallica did the same 30 yrs later - S&M (1999). Blind Guardian included Philharmonic Orchestra in 2010. - Metal_Treasure

I agree with everything except I don't understand how is Perfect Strangers metal. - Alkadikce

4 Pantera Pantera Pantera was an American Heavy Metal band formed in 1981 by guitarist Dimebag Darrell and drummer Vinnie Paul. The band started out as a Glam Metal act in the 1980s with little success. After discarding their original lead vocalist and enlisting Phil Anselmo, the band signed a major record deal with more.

Despite the early Glam years, they were an extremely popular band in the 90s that created Groove Metal. - ryanrimmel

5 Venom Venom Venom are an English extreme metal band formed in 1979 in Newcastle upon Tyne. Coming to prominence towards the end of the new wave of British heavy metal, Venom's first two albums—Welcome to Hell and Black Metal—are considered a major influence on thrash metal and extreme metal in general.

The Album Black Metal didn't contribute to the creation of Black metal...But in general, the album was very influential. - Ananya

Venom is well known for creating Black Metal with their album called Black Metal. That much is clear.
However, Venom was actually the first Thrash Metal band as well, 'Welcome to Hell' was released in 1981. As far as my research goes, that's the first true thrash album ever

Also, Venom's debut album to me is the first Extreme Metal album in general. Along with Celtic Frost, Venom influenced bands around the word to push the boundaries of Metal, helping spawn Extreme Metal subgenres like Death Metal, black metal, grindcore, and thrash metal - ryanrimmel

6 Motörhead Motörhead Motörhead were an English heavy metal band formed in June 1975 by bassist, singer, and songwriter Ian Fraser "Lemmy" Kilmister, who was the sole constant member; guitarist and songwriter Larry Wallis; and drummer Lucas Fox. The band's harsh vocals and fast paced tempos helped inspire speed metal and more.

Motörhead invented Speed Metal. Although Lemmy claims his music to be Rock n Roll and not metal, I can't agree with him. Motörhead is heavy and fast, its all metal.

Speed Metal is basically a less aggressive version of thrash, and although bands like Deep Purples, Accept, and Anvil played Speed Metal. Motörhead was the first band to play strictly Speed Metal - ryanrimmel

Deep Purple invented Speed Metal way before Motörhead. Speed metal is a subgenre of power metal and Motörhead are far from power metal.

Besides, Motörhead are not metal (I agree with Lemmy). They are heavy and fast but it doesn't mean they are metal. Many punk bands are even heavier and faster than Motörhead but again - it doesn't mean they are metal.
Stylistically Motörhead and speed metal are far from each other but I agree Motörhead and thrash have something in common - punk elements and punk attitude.
But while Motörhead mixed Rock N Roll with punk, thrash mixed speed metal with hardcore punk. Therefore you can hear classical influences in thrash (coming from Deep Purple's speed metal) but you don't hear elements of classical music in Motörhead. - Metal_Treasure

7 Helloween Helloween Helloween is a German power metal band founded in 1984 in Hamburg, Northern Germany. The band is a pioneering force in the power metal genre, and their second and third studio albums, Keeper of the Seven Keys: Part I and Part II, are considered masterpieces of the genre.

The first Power Metal band ever. Obviously, they had lots of influence from Ronnie James Dio, Judas Priest, and Iron Maiden. They were clearly the first Power Metal band and inspired many bands into the present. - ryanrimmel

A great band but they didn't creat this subgenre - they just revived and modernized it in the context of The New Wave Of British Heavy Metal.
Power metal was invented by Rainbow, including it's symphonic version - symphonic power metal. - Metal_Treasure

8 Bathory Bathory Bathory was a Swedish Black/Viking Metal band formed in 1983 by Quorthon and Jonas Åkerlund. Bathory's first 4 albums layed the blueprint for Scandinavian Black Metal. Quorthon is often credited with creating the "shrieking" vocal style of Black Metal. Their 5th album, Hammerheart (1990) displayed more.

Although Venom is credited with the creation of Black Metal, Bathory's vocals on their first 4 albums were the blueprint for Norwegian Black Metal. They invented the shrieking vocals, but not the subgenre.

However, Bathory did create a subgenre known as Viking Metal with their 5th album, Hammerheart. Hammerheart is also my personal favorite album from Bathory. - ryanrimmel

9 Metallica Metallica Metallica is an American Thrash Metal band formed in 1981 . The original lineup was James Hetfield (Vocalist and Rhythm guitarist), Dave Mustaine (Lead Guitar), Lars Ulrich (Drums), Ron McGovney (Bassist). The group came into mainstream from their Self-Titled album and the hit single "Enter Sandman". more.

Thrash metal was around way before Metallica. Overkill and Venom beat them to the punch - ryanrimmel

This is for the forum moderator, stop the metallica fanatics! this kind of info distort the true history of metal and the evolving subgenres, metallica it's not thrash and they don't invented or defining it... a little of congruence here please!

Created Thrash Metal! I mean they did refine it at least and created it to what it is today

#11? These guys invented thrash metal! Thrash metal is way better than power metal

10 Rainbow 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 more.

Power metal
Symphonic metal/symphonic power metal
Neo-classical metal - Metal_Treasure

The Contenders

11 At The Gates At The Gates At the Gates is a Swedish melodic death metal band from Gothenburg, and a major progenitor of the Gothenburg sound

At The Gates may not be the most popular band, but the created Melodic Death Metal. That means that the popular MeloDeath bands of today such as Children of Bodom, Amon Amarth, In Flames, or Arch Enemy all owe a huge debt to At The Gates. - ryanrimmel

Wasn't in flames the very first melodeath band?

12 Rammstein Rammstein Rammstein is a German Neue Deutsche Härte and Industrial Metal band consisting of Till Lindemann (vocals), Richard Kruspe (guitar), Paul Landers (guitar), Oliver Riedel (electric bass), Christoph Schneider (drums) and Christian Lorenz (keyboard), that formed in 1994 in Berlin . more.

I believe they created Neue Deutsche Härte. - MegadethFan07

13 Korn Korn Korn is an American Nu-Metal band from Bakersfield, California, formed in 1993. The band's current lineup includes founding members Jonathan Davis, James "Munky" Shaffer, Brian "Head" Welch, and Reginald "Fieldy" Arvizu, with the addition of Ray Luzier, who replaced the band's original member, David more.

They made Nu Metal.

14 Possessed Possessed Possessed is an American thrash/death metal band, originally formed in 1983 in the San Francisco Bay Area. Noted for their fast style of playing and Jeff Becerra's guttural vocals, they are routinely called the first band in the death metal genre. Possessed is the sometimes credited with being the first more.

Without doubt if one band made a difference and his style even now in the 2016 has no match was Possessed, Seven churches today sound is unique, the Eyes of horror EP must be a flag for every thrasher, death maniac

The pioneers of Death Metal along with Death.

It is true that Possessed was around shortly before Death, but Possessed remained a pretty obscure/underground band because they were playing in the same scene as Metallica, Slayer, and Megadeth. Shortly after Death began releasing records, several of the most influential and popular death metal bands began releasing records at the SAME STUDIO (Morrisound). These bands include Morbid Angel, Deicide, Cannibal Corpse, Obituary, Atheist, Suffocation, Malevolent Creation, Acheron, Massacre, Six Feet Under, Gorguts, Cynic, and Pestilence.
These groups made up the Florida Death Metal Scene, which was all started by Death. So without Death, death metal might not even exist today - ryanrimmel

15 Napalm Death Napalm Death Napalm Death are a British grindcore/death metal band formed in Meriden, West Midlands, England, in 1981. While none of its original members remain in the group, the lineup of vocalist Mark "Barney" Greenway, bassist Shane Embury, guitarist Mitch Harris and drummer Danny Herrera has remained consistent more.

Created Grindcore and the blastbeat - ryanrimmel

16 Crimson Glory Crimson Glory Crimson Glory is an American progressive metal band that formed in 1979 under the name Pierced Arrow.

Crimson Glory is not popular, but they were the first Progressive Metal band ever. Queensryche and Fates Warning came years later, followed by Dream Theater. - ryanrimmel

17 Ghost Ghost Ghost is a Swedish heavy metal band that was formed in Linköping in 2008. Ghost consists of 5 masked instrumentalists, known as The Nameless Ghouls, and a demonic anti-pope known as Papa Emeritus. They have released 4 studio albums, 1 live album and 2 EPs. Each album brings in a new version of Papa more.

As much as I love Ghost, they play traditional heavy/doom metal. Nothing new - ryanrimmel

18 HIM HIM HIM was a Finnish gothic rock band from Helsinki, Finland. Formed in 1991 by vocalist Ville Valo and bassist Mikko "Mige" Paananen under the name His Infernal Majesty, the band broke up in 1993, before being reformed in 1995 by Valo and guitarist Mikko "Linde" Lindström.

They created Love Metal - SoldierOfFortune

19 Mayhem Mayhem Mayhem is a Norwegian black metal band formed in 1984 in Oslo, regarded as one of the pioneers of the Norwegian black metal scene. The band is also known for the infamous events surrounding them including the 1991 suicide of vocalist Dead (in which former guitarist Euronymous took pictures of Dead's more.

Mayhem is the band that deserves to be here...
No other band influenced and made black metal more than them. - Ananya

20 Jane's Addiction Jane's Addiction Jane's Addiction is an American rock band from Los Angeles, formed in 1985. The band consists of Perry Farrell, Dave Navarro, Stephen Perkins and Chris Chaney.

Many miight not think of them as metal, but they were actually the first real Alternative Metal band. - ryanrimmel

21 Exhorder Exhorder Exhorder is an American metal band from New Orleans, Louisiana. They are credited as the purveyors of the groove-oriented thrash sound later made famous by bands such as Pantera, Lamb of God, White Zombie, and Machine Head.

they are credited as the purveyors of the groove-oriented thrash sound, later made famous by bands such as Pantera, White Zombie, and Machine Head.
Their debut album, Slaughter in the Vatican, was released in 1990 (Pantera released their first groove metal album in the same year).
There has been controversy amongst Pantera's and Exhorder's fans over similarities between both bands' sound, fueled by the success of Pantera and the obscurity of Exhorder. - Metal_Treasure

22 Carcass Carcass Carcass are a British extreme metal band from Liverpool, who formed in 1985 and disbanded in 1995. A reformation was enacted in 2007 without one of its original members, drummer Ken Owen, due to health reasons.

They were one of the first Grindcore bands along with Napalm Death. They created 'Goregrind', and they helped pioneer Melodic Death Metal in the early 90s - ryanrimmel

23 Opeth Opeth Opeth is a Swedish progressive death metal band from Stockholm, formed in 1990 by David Isberg, who invited Mikael Akerfeldt into the band as a bassist. Isberg ended up leaving the band, which lead to Mikael becoming the band's vocalist, guitarist, principal songwriter, and driving force. Along with more.
24 Ministry Ministry Ministry is an American industrial metal band founded by lead singer and only original member Al Jourgensen in 1981. Originally a new wave synthpop outfit, Ministry changed its style to industrial metal in the mid-1980s.

The pioneers of industrial metal.

25 KMFDM KMFDM KMFDM is an industrial band led by German multi-instrumentalist Sascha Konietzko, who founded the group in 1984 as a performance art project.
26 Toxic Holocaust Toxic Holocaust Toxic Holocaust is an American black/thrash metal band from Portland, Oregon, formed in 1999. The band has gained notoriety among the thrash metal community, and is arguably one of the most popular modern thrash metal bands. Toxic Holocaust also gained attention when their song "Bitch" was featured more.
27 Exodus Exodus Exodus is an American thrash metal band formed in 1979 in Richmond, California. Spanning a career of 37 years, Exodus has gone through numerous lineup changes, two extended hiatuses, and the deaths of two former band members.
28 Atheist Atheist Atheist is a progressive/technical death metal band from Florida, founded in 1984 by drummer Steve Flynn and singer/guitarist Kelly Shaefer.
29 Suffocation Suffocation Suffocation is an American technical death metal band that was formed in 1988 in Centereach, Long Island, New York, United States.
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List StatsCreated 18 Mar 2015
Updated 30 Mar 2019

100 votes
29 listings
4 years, 248 days old

Top Remixes (5)

1. Mayhem
2. Black Sabbath
3. Bathory
1. Deep Purple
2. Rainbow
3. Venom
1. Black Sabbath
2. Deep Purple
3. Helloween

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