Greatest Debut Albums for a Band

The Top Ten
1 Guns N' Roses - Appetite for Destruction

Yep. Definitely. One of the few bands that produced some of their finest works in their first album. Need evidence? Sweet Child, Welcome to the Jungle, Paradise City, etc. Not to mention that it's the best-selling debut album of all time.

Absolute classic, and Guns N' Roses' best album. They never topped this. How the hell is Kill Em All 1st? Metallica is my favorite band, but I know a good debut when I hear one, and Kill Em All ain't it. I've counted 10 albums on this list that I'd vote for before Kill Em All.

Best debut album of all time, no question. Welcome to the Jungle, It's So Easy, Night Train, Mr. Brownstone, Paradise City, My Michelle, Sweet Child O' Mine, and Rocket Queen were the album's best. That is 8/12 for me, more songs I liked in an album.

2 Led Zeppelin - Led Zeppelin

Led Zeppelin I completely redefined all of rock and roll forever. Led Zeppelin's hard, power-driven sound in their first album anchored them a place in rock and roll's history forever and laid the foundations for metal. Most times, a band doesn't take off until their third or fourth album, and even if they do well on their first album, their musicians haven't reached their peak yet.

But all members of Led Zeppelin hit the ground running on that album and, as a result, made one of the most influential albums of all time. I think it's also worth mentioning that most bands who do successfully put out a great debut album fall from glory and never put out an album as good. Boston, for example, is only known for that first album, but Led Zeppelin only got better after their first album. Led Zeppelin I is truly legendary and will never be matched.

3 Metallica - Kill 'Em All

First song, Hit the Lights, fast and awesome solo, then comes The Four Horsemen, nice solo with some awesome riffs, then Motorbreath, another fast one with awesome vocals by Het! Then the anthemic Jump in the Fire with its awesome riff, then Pulling Teeth, the amazing bass solo by Cliff and has memorable bass licks that will be the best bass work ever!

Then the headbanging classic Whiplash and awesome solo in Phantom Lord, soon followed by awesome screaming vocals and guitar solos in No Remorse, then comes another anthemic classic Seek and Destroy and to close the classic album, the fast and furious Metal Militia!

4 Linkin Park - Hybrid Theory

Number 4? Really? No disrespect to the other three before them, but they all sound the same and still do, whereas LP has evolved as a band, still going strong and keeping you guessing as to what new kickass stuff they're gonna come up with next!

Anyway, here it's about debut albums, and I firmly believe no album can match the quality, style, and substance of Hybrid Theory! I mean, it's literally 15 years ago, and people are still crazy about tracks like In the End, Crawling, One Step Closer, and many more. Whereas I can't think of any Guns N' Roses, or Led Zeppelin (well maybe Metallica) songs that could even come close to the class and different variety in a single album of Hybrid Theory. For me, Hybrid Theory will always be the best debut album of all time!

5 The Jimi Hendrix Experience - Are You Experienced?

This can't be number 11. There are bands on this list above this album that I like more than The Jimi Hendrix Experience, but we're talking about the best debut album of all time, and this one deserves that title. This album, with its mix of Blues Rock and Psychedelic/Acid Rock, created the Hard Rock sound. And if we consider Jimi's guitar playing, this is the best debut album of all time, no doubt about it.

This is the best debut! Purple Haze, Hey Joe, Foxy Lady, The Wind Cries Mary, and Red House. How is this not higher? Here's my top 5:

1. Are You Experienced?
2. The Doors
3. Led Zeppelin
4. Appetite for Destruction
5. Black Sabbath

6 Pearl Jam - Ten

Awesome album. Also rated as the best debut album by Rolling Stone.

7 King Crimson - In the Court of the Crimson King

Guns N' Roses number one? What? In the Court of the Crimson King is a much better album musically, creatively, influentially, and lyrically. I have no idea why people love Guns N' Roses so much. I used to love them when I was 14, and there was a guy who knew a lot about music who told me they were garbage. I didn't believe him, but now that I'm older and I appreciate music so much more, I realize he was right. This, however, is true music. The first track on this album alone out-rocks anything Guns N' Roses ever did.

8 Van Halen - Van Halen

How is this #23? An absolute disgrace. Linkin Park or Evanescence can't even compare to Van Halen. This is one of the greatest debut albums ever. Should be in at least the top 5.

It's a shame everyone just votes for Linkin Park no matter what it is now. It seems like, tsk tsk.

This one's gonna be hard to beat because of all the hits and that it turned the music industry in a different direction.

Appetite for Destruction and this are the best! Hands down.

9 Black Sabbath - Black Sabbath
10 The Doors - The Doors

The debut album of Ray, John, Robbie, and Jim gives us such chilling epics as Light My Fire, Twentieth Century Fox, Break on Through (To the Other Side), and Soul Kitchen. However, the track at the end of the album, appropriately titled "The End", has some of The Doors' most poetic lyrics, as well as a reference to the Oedipus complex. A must-own for music collectors.

My favorite debut album ever. Will remain cutting-edge for generations. Spurned from a concert in the head of one of the greatest of the greats. No downside.

The Contenders
11 Boston - Boston

No other debut album still has every song on it being played on the radio to this day, period. That's why Boston is still number one. They play more different chords in four measures than some bands have in their entire catalog, and they defined for all time what a proper rock ballad sounds like.

Tom Scholz, in my opinion, is the greatest rock guitarist of all time (and a great keyboardist also). He is a true musical genius. Along with his lead vocalist, Brad Delp, they shocked the world when they came on the music scene. Thank you, Tom and Brad, for sharing your God-given gifts and talent with the world!

12 The Beatles - Please Please Me

This debut Beatles record demands to be placed higher! Maybe just in the top ten is enough for how great a debut this is. Fourteen songs of pure, raw, blissful music! P.S. I love you.

One of the best debuts ever! It needs to be higher.

13 Iron Maiden - Iron Maiden

How can all of you forget this album? Everything about this album is perfect. The guitars are raw, the bass is loud, and the drums are not as good as Nicko's but are still acceptable. Paul Di'Anno's voice is almost to Bruce's level.

14 Oasis - Definitely Maybe

Britpop is underrated on this site, which just breaks me. Oasis and their rivals Blur changed the music world forever. Definitely Maybe is, well, definitely one of the greatest debut albums of all time and one of the greatest albums in history as well. Let's all hope that Oasis reunite in the near future. That is all I have to say. Goodbye.

I think this might be better than What's The Story (Morning Glory?) after giving it a second listen. Also, the album that was key to influencing Britpop.

Has to be in the top 10! Lads off the council estate in Manchester produce a flawless album.

15 Rage Against The Machine - Rage Against The Machine

The debut album that introduced the sound of RATM. A mix of hard rock, punk, metal, rap, and funk. Deserves number 1.

16 Evanescence - Fallen

Superb debut album for Evanescence with hits like My Immortal, Bring Me to Life, and Going Under.

17 Alice in Chains - Facelift
18 The Cars - The Cars

Growing up in the 80s, we all had a couple of songs from this album in our tape players. A true legacy to this album is that songs are still played at sporting events and functions some 35 years later! A great debut album, a great band. Wake up, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame!

19 Weezer - The Blue Album

I have never found such a perfect listen in my entire life. This album is amazing. "Say It Ain't So," "Undone (The Sweater Song)," and "Buddy Holly" may be the most recognized songs from this album, but if you want more of that Weezer-style rock, check out the rest of this album. You won't regret it, I can guarantee.

20 Stevie Ray Vaughan & Double Trouble - Texas Flood
21 Queen - Queen

Probably not the best (Jesus is a bit of filler in context, and Seven Seas isn't even finished yet), but a personal favorite. Liar is a masterpiece. Queen could rock just as hard as Sabbath, Zep, and Purple, but they had more interesting ideas for their future...

Who would have thought they would become legends? I was fortunate enough to see them at Wembley in '86 on the It's a Kind of Magic tour, and magic it was. My daughter is so jealous.

This debut is dynamic, heavy, and so much more. With songs like "Liar" or "Great King Rat," it just explodes into your ears. In my opinion, it's an even better debut than LZ.

22 Ozzy Osbourne - Blizzard of Ozz
23 Dio - Holy Diver
24 Adema - Adema
25 Pink Floyd - The Piper at the Gates of Dawn

Only 29? Wow, this is horrible! This album is maybe the best ever, and people put it behind Metallica, Linkin Park, and AC/DC who are in fact only trying to say, "Look at my overdriven guitar!" That's ridiculous when we know this album is full of poetry, surrealism, bright vocals work, psychedelic fantasy, and even space rock sounds. Syd Barrett's genius on lyrics and guitars has been forgotten, and this is really a shame!

This is the ultimate debut album as an innovation of new music. By the way, full of great lyrics, melodies, the first space rock songs ever, and...

Here is Syd Barrett's universal genius. A man who could paint music.

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