Top Ten Most Underrated Metal Drummers


The Top Ten

1 Nicko McBrain - Iron Maiden Nicko McBrain - Iron Maiden Michael Henry "Nicko" McBrain is an English musician, best known as the drummer of the British heavy metal band Iron Maiden, which he joined in 1982.

Nicko is honestly the greatest drummer to ever live. Iron Maiden is the best. No double bass just single. Up the Irons!

Does he actually not do double-bass drumming? I thought that he does, 'cause of how quick that that bass-drum-playing sounds to me. - Feirceraven

He is underrated. The double cross is not the greatest thing. He plays in a different way and also that makes the "maiden sound". He don't need to make any fast bass drum taps like joey's. He is unique and my favorite drummer.

Best hasn't got any writing credit except some b side of singles yet has written so many drum tracks yet so underrated

Nah clive burr is more underrated than him.

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2 Arin Ilejay - Avenged Sevenfold

Arin is not The Rev dumbass Jimmy is the Rev

How is the Rev underrated? He is #1 on the best metal drummer list haha

His beats always linger in my mind
He's quite talented guys

Arin isn't as good as the rev but he's till good

3 Michael 'Moose' Thomas - Bullet For My Valentine

This drummer is SICK! Hear songs like your betreyal, the last fight, scream aim fire and you will know that he is the most underrated drummer but joey, adler, lambardo are the best drummers atm

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4 Gene Hoglan - Death, Dethklok, Testament, Death Angel Gene Hoglan - Death, Dethklok, Testament, Death Angel Eugene "Gene" Victor Hoglan II is an American drummer. He is acclaimed for his creativity in drum arrangements, including use of odd devices for percussion effects and his trademark lengthy double-kick drum rhythms.

Gene is by far the most active heavy metal drummer on the planet. And oh wait... He's REALLY good! Lars should be bumped way down. All rock beats now.

He was in Dark Angel, not Death Angel. Still a badass, though!

Gene gets planet of respect. He's not really underrated - Sabbath

Don't forget, he was in Strapping Young Lad and Zimmer's Hole! - defmetal

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5 Daniel Erlandsson - Arch Enemy

Most people won't have heard of him, which is a shame because he's really good

He is and insanely good drummer crap... he is much better than most drummers these days... for example listen to time is black by arch enemy... insanity!

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6 Andols Herrick - Chimaira
7 Scott Travis - Judas Priest Scott Travis - Judas Priest Mark Scott Travis is a Grammy Award winning American rock musician, best known as the drummer for the English heavy metal band Judas Priest and the American heavy metal band Racer X.

My god just listen to painkiller his drum solo made me cry he must take first place

Scott kicks butt. A great drummer.

Travis rocks. Very underrated

Racer X & Judas Priest work is enough to make him #1

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8 Nick Menza - Megadeth Nick Menza - Megadeth Nick Menza (1964-2016) was a professional drummer best known for his work in Megadeth from 1989-1998 and in 2004. He recorded drums on four of Megadeth's albums "Rust In Peace", "Countdown To Extinction", "Youthanasia", and "Cryptic Writings".

The forgotten king is dead... Long live the king Menza!

As a drummer I can say Nick Menza is a supremely talented drummer but only drummers seem to know this as never appreciated as much as he should be Megadeth fans but any drummer will tell you Holy Wars is superb and also listen to the jazz band with whom he played. He certainly had talent in abundance and definitely underrated.

Nick Menza is the king drummer of metal, he was kicked out off megadeth by Dave Mustaine, when Dave asked him to perform with megadeth again, the other drummers that dave mustaine hired was nervous when they saw nick menza there

What?! Gar Samuelson is criminally underrated

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9 Jordan Mancino - As I Lay Dying
10 Randy Black - Primal fear, ex-Annihilator Randy Black - Primal fear, ex-Annihilator Randy Black is a Canadian-born metal drummer and recording artist best known for his stints as the drummer for Annihilator, Primal Fear, Duskmachine, and Bif Naked. He is an ambidextrous drummer.

Fast, technical and creative. Ambidextrous.
Awesome fills and intros. Incredible musicality and versatility. He uses a wide range of beats/styles from all metal subgenres. - Metal_Treasure

The Contenders

11 Charlie Benante - Anthrax

This guy has one of the best double kick techniques on the planet. It's so tough to be super-fast and super-accurate at the same time, but this guy does it effortlessly. Without him, god knows where Anthrax would be right now!

12 Mario Duplantier - Gojira Mario Duplantier - Gojira Mario Duplantier is a French musician and artist best known as the drummer of technical death metal band Gojira.

Definitely the most underrated and so is Gojira in general.

French for the win

He is simply awesome.
PS how is that douche from A7X on this list, he is most overrated drummer ever

Mario is definitely one of the best drummers ever, his timing is different but really works! And I agree with the comments below about him

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13 Mike Mangini - Dream Theater Mike Mangini - Dream Theater Mike Mangini is an American drummer. Since 2010, he has been a member of progressive metal band Dream Theater, following the departure of founding drummer Mike Portnoy.

Nobody could have replaced Portnoy any better. He is incredibly fast and insanely technical. A truly great drummer that lives in the shadow of his predecessor.

I have nothing but admiration for this guy. I honestly think he's even better than Portnoy but still doesn't get the credits he deserves. - Metal_Treasure

He�'s probably the best I know - SweetChaos

14 Jimmy The Rev Sullivan - Avenged Sevenfold

Some will tell you he is all about speed, but he isn't. he's about the technicality, and the style. The speed is just a bonus. We all miss ya Jimmy. foREVer

The rev is overrated as hell!

He's underrated because people think he is talentless, and all about speed. He's not, he's the best metal drummer

People underrate him because Avenged Sevenfold fans overoveroverrate him.

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15 Clive Burr - Iron Maiden Clive Burr - Iron Maiden

Can't forget the guy who helped start Maiden off. R.I.P. clive, such an amazing drummer

16 Flo Mounier - Cryptopsy Flo Mounier - Cryptopsy Flo Mounier is the drummer of technical death metal band Cryptopsy. He has toured Canada, Europe, Japan, Australia and the United States as a headlining act over the last 24 years, and combined record sales have reached over 300,000 copies to date.

He's a beast (technical death metal). - Metal_Treasure

17 Jason Rullo - Symphony X

Rullo rocks! Symphony X is AWESOME!

18 Jerod Boyd - Miss May I
19 Mike Portnoy - Dream Theater, Liquid Tension Experiment Mike Portnoy - Dream Theater, Liquid Tension Experiment Michael Portnoy is an American drummer primarily known as the former drummer, backing vocalist, and a co-founder of the progressive metal/rock band Dream Theater. Known for his technical skill as a drummer, Portnoy has won 30 awards from the Modern Drummer magazine.

He's not really underrated. - Metal_Treasure

It's weird how no one has a "halfway" opinion about Mr. Portnoy. Everybody either hates him or worships the ground he walks on, but neither group can really say why they feel the way they do. Has anybody noticed this or is it just me?

One of the most underrated and one of the greatest in last years but joey and chris adler are the most underrated

20 Bobby Jarzombek - Halford, Riot, Sebastian Bach Bobby Jarzombek - Halford, Riot, Sebastian Bach Bobby Jarzombek is a heavy metal/progressive metal drummer and best known for his work with Halford, Sebastian Bach and Riot. V 1 Comment
21 Alex Pelletier - Despised Icon
22 Jeremy Spencer - Five Finger Death Punch

Jeremy Spencer is definitely one of the best metal drummers out there. He deserves way more attention!

His groove is incredible and his double bass is better than most others.

23 John Dolmayan - System of A Down John Dolmayan - System of A Down John Dolmayan is a Lebanese-born Armenian–American songwriter and drummer. He is best known as the drummer of System of a Down.

Seriously I think it's because he's so quiet but people don't realize that this guy is as great a drummer as anyone. He doesn't miss a beat

Still underrated in the underrated list

Just listen to Deer Dance, Toxicity, Radio/Video, etc.

Extremely complex dude

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24 Thomas Stauch - Blind Guardian Thomas Stauch - Blind Guardian Thomas ("The Omen") Stauch, also known as Thomen Stauch, is a German metal drummer best known as the drummer for the metal band Blind Guardian (1984-2005) and one of the founding members. He worked with various bands and is the current drummer for Serious Black.
25 Rick Allen - Def Leppard Rick Allen - Def Leppard Richard John Cyril "Rick" Allen is an English drummer who has played for the hard rock band Def Leppard since 1978. He overcame the amputation of his left arm in 1985 and continued to play with the band, which subsequently went on to its most commercially successful phase.

He's an inspiration for not having an arm yet still doing what he loves, but I never really considered definitely Leppard metal

How many people actually know that this guy has one arm?

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26 Mike Wengren - Disturbed

Joey Jordison underrated?
Are you kidding me?
Mike Wengren from Disturbed ist one of the best, but also most underrated drummers.
He is fast but powerful, a beast on the drums!

27 Inferno - Behemoth

Genuinely the only one out of these people who I think is not only super speedy, but can do atmospheric drumming like religious beats etc

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28 Felix Bohnke - Edguy; Avantasia Felix Bohnke - Edguy; Avantasia Felix Bohnke, born 2 September 1974, is the drummer of heavy metal band Edguy. He joined the band just before they recorded the Theater of Salvation album in 1998.
29 Jon Larsen - Volbeat
30 Tomas Haake - Meshuggah Tomas Haake - Meshuggah Tomas Haake is a Swedish drummer and main songwriter of the experimental metal band Meshuggah. He is known for his polyrhythms and technical ability. In 2012, he was named the 5th best Modern Metal drummer by He was named the number one drummer in the "Metal" category, in the July 2008 more.

Just try to replicate some of those polys he lays will suddenly find yourself in doubt of your supposed skills

This dude is god. Play this joey jordison id love to see you try and fail

Just hear the song bleed. Enough said.

This man must have 4 arms and 3 legs.

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31 Zach Gibson - The Black Dahlia Murder
32 Mike Bordin - Faith no More, Ozzy

After 6 Faith no More albums and such a standard kit he manages to never sound or drum the same every album. Respect

Has probably gone thru more snare drum skins than any other drummer on this list. Wields his drumsticks like Thor's hammer! Probably should have been in the band Manowar, but is still brilliant in FNM.

33 Paul Mazurkiewicz - Cannibal Corpse Paul Mazurkiewicz - Cannibal Corpse

No one pounds them harder in the world

34 Cozy Powell - Rainbow, Black Sabbath Cozy Powell - Rainbow, Black Sabbath Colin Trevor "Cozy" Powell was an English rock drummer, who made his name with many major rock bands and artists like The Jeff Beck Group, Rainbow, Robert Plant, Whitesnake and Black Sabbath.

Cozy set a world RECORD for the most drums (400) played in under one minute, live on television (BBC). He was quoted as saying in an interview, "I drive like I drum - madly". - Metal_Treasure

Metal greats begin with him. - Metal_Treasure

35 Ray Luzier - Korn

Same skill level as David, don't just bash him because he replaced him, jesus.

36 Ian Paice - Deep Purple Ian Paice - Deep Purple Ian Anderson Paice (born 29 June 1948) is an English musician, best known as the drummer of the English rock band Deep Purple. He has been the band's only constant member since its foundation.

The first metal drummer who used double bass (1971, Fireball). - Metal_Treasure

37 Chris Adler - Lamb of God Chris Adler - Lamb of God Christopher James Adler is an American drummer, best known as a member of the groove metal band Lamb of God.

Listen to songs like Ruin, Redneck, Grace, black label, Laid To rest and you will know that he is the most underrated drummer. But all other drummers listed are good too - nooreldeen

Chris adler is the best modern metal drummer. He is the most technical drummer nowadays

38 Danny Carey - Tool Danny Carey - Tool Daniel Edwin "Danny" Carey, born May 10, 1961 in Lawrence, Kansas, is an American drummer and instrumentalist best known for his work in American Grammy Award-winning progressive rock band Tool. He has also contributed to albums by and played with such artists as Zaum, Green Jellÿ, Pigface, Skinny more.

Music isn't about technique and speed, it's about sounds and emotions. No ones better at painting a picture with drums than carey

Phenominal talent but he's not really underrated. He's one of the most respected/recognized in the business! In terms of underrated drummers, Matt Halpern and Matt Garstka should be on the list alongside Duplantier, Haake, Dailor, Orbin and Rudinger

39 Hannes Grossmann - Necrophagist
40 Martin Lopez - Opeth
41 Sean Kinney - Alice in Chains

This guys should be at least top 10 best metal drummers! Just listen to No excuses, what a master piece.

42 Steve Asheim - Deicide
43 Nick Augusto - Trivium
44 Abe Cunningham - Deftones

Most underrated drummer even underrated on a list of underrated drummers

His beat is just so amazing and groovy

Always creative. Rarely ever plays the same beat for two songs. If ever. Great drummer that can carry any song. If not for Abe, there wouldn't be Deftone

45 Matt Halpern - Periphery

Matt Halpern has created a free style of drumming. He drums with pure emotion and an immense love for drumming which can be felt through your speakers. The combination of technique and passion make this drummer a godly person. If you don't know Matt, then don't be a drummer.

Seriously, if you haven't heard of him, hit him up on Youtube. Too many metal drummers nowadays are idolised for nothing but speed, but Halpern should be well within the ten most underrated due to his skill outside the bounds of fast semiquavers. Speed is great, but he has so many other things covered like polyrhythms, grooves, shuffles and ghost notes. And he's a fine improviser.

46 Richard Christy - Death, Charred Walls of the Damned

He also played in Control denied and cynic. His drum work In sound of perseverance was amazing and his power if the double bass in the song cut down by control denied is enough to put him I. The top 2 - Sabbath

47 Arejay Hale - Halestorm

The crazy tricks he does on stage are awesome, and no Halestorm show would be the same without them, but sometimes I believe people only think of the show when they think of Arejay Hale and that makes his actual skills at being a drummer somewhat underrated compared to the show.

He's amazing. I don't really know why he's on this list, though. He's not really underrated because everybody knows he's amazing.

Amazing at playing drums AND fun to watch. Like a front man behind drums!

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48 Jason Bonham - Led Zeppelin

This guy inherits his fathers drumming. No wonder he plays in zeppelin and in Scott Ian 's band Damnocracy!

49 George Kollias - Nile George Kollias - Nile Georgios "George" Kollias is a Greek heavy metal drummer and music teacher best known for his work with American technical death metal band Nile. V 1 Comment
50 Brann Dailor - Mastodon Brann Dailor - Mastodon Brann Timothy Dailor is an American drummer/singer best known as a member of the Atlanta, Georgia metal band Mastodon, in which he is the drummer, backing vocalist, lead vocalist and primary lyricist.

This guy is insane. I would put him up there with Danny Carey, who Brann actually BEAT IN A DRUM COMPETITION. His drumming is sporadic, complex, and fast. Just listen to Megalodon, Divinations, or Capillarian Crest. He never reuses a fill. Just the fact that Dave Grohl thinks he's the best in the world should speak volumes about his playing.

He is definitely one of the best drummer. His beat is so complicated and fast. Just listen to aqua dementia

Definitely one of the best and most underrated

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List Stats

700 votes
118 listings
4 years, 334 days old

Top Remixes (6)

1. Mike Mangini - Dream Theater
2. Flo Mounier - Cryptopsy
3. Randy Black - Primal fear, ex-Annihilator
1. Gene Hoglan - Death, Dethklok, Testament, Death Angel
2. Arin Ilejay - Avenged Sevenfold
3. Nick Menza - Megadeth
1. Daniel Erlandsson - Arch Enemy
2. Michael 'Moose' Thomas - Bullet For My Valentine
3. Andols Herrick - Chimaira

View All 6

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