The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams Bands/Musicians
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The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams

List Criteria: Only metal guitarist or guitar tandems. Guitarists from other genres shouldn't be included on here

List of the greatest metal guitarists of all time, with photos. Clearly, the list contains a broad selection of guitarists who can still be classified as "metal," though some of the featured guitarists predate the period in which "heavy metal" was enjoying mainstream, popular success. It also includes guitarists such as Brian May and Jimi Hendrix who are not typically referred to as "metal guitarists" as their primary genre – but their guitar sounds were actually highly influential in early heavy metal music.

Who are the best metal guitarists of all time? Which musicians shredded the hardest on their guitars? The list also notably contains memorable duos or guitar groups, as line-ups featuring multiple guitarists who compliment one another is such a fixture of the metal genre. Guitarists who are featured as part of a group (such as Megadeth's Dave Mustaine and Marty Friedman or KISS's Ace Frehley and Paul Stanley) should not be listed individually except in rare circumstances where that guitarist had notable success and a specific style while playing solo as well as with a metal group. If you can think of anyone who would be in your personal top 100, then definitely add them to this list. 
  • 26 ReRanks
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  1. 1
    + 867
    - 276

    the people's #1 Glam metal, Heavy metal, Neo-classical metal

    ) open
  2. 2
    + 841
    - 447

    most listed Popular music, Pop music, Rock music

    ) open
  3. 3
    + 794
    - 361

    Blues-rock, Folk rock, Heavy metal

    ) open
  4. 4
    + 737
    - 250

    Doom metal, Blues-rock, Heavy metal

    ) open
  5. 5
    + 791
    - 388

    Blues-rock, Rock music, Experimental rock

    ) open
  6. 6
    + 801
    - 395

    Glam metal, Thrash metal, Groove metal

    ) open
  7. 7
    + 478
    - 354

    often listed & ranked high on reranks Glam metal, Progressive metal, Instrumental rock

    ) open
  8. 8
    + 585
    - 385

    Angus & Malcolm Young

    ) open
  9. 9
    + 782
    - 428

    Dave Mustaine & Marty Friedman

    ) open
  10. 10
    + 550
    - 259

    Rock music, Instrumental rock, Heavy metal

    ) open
  11. 11
    + 482
    - 239

    Glen Tipton & K.K. Downing

    ) open
  12. 12
    + 618
    - 373
    ) open
  13. 13
    + 516
    - 288

    Progressive metal, Experimental rock, Instrumental rock

    ) open
  14. 14
    + 548
    - 294

    Groove metal, Heavy metal, Southern rock

    ) open
  15. 15
    + 473
    - 251

    Rock music, Heavy metal, Neo-Medieval music

    ) open
  16. 16
    + 686
    - 368

    Kirk Hammett & James Hetfield

    ) open
  17. 17
    + 523
    - 251

    Dave Murray & Adrian Smith

    ) open
  18. 18
    + 568
    - 325

    Rock music, Heavy metal, Pop rock

    ) open
  19. 19
    + 569
    - 268

    Thrash metal, Progressive metal, Heavy metal

    ) open
  20. 20
    + 330
    - 251

    Heavy metal, Hard rock

    ) open
  21. 21
    + 405
    - 263

    Thrash metal, Heavy metal, Speed metal

    ) open
  22. 22
    + 250
    - 226

    Glam metal, Blues-rock, Rock music

    ) open
  23. 23
    + 330
    - 248

    Heavy metal, Progressive rock, Hard rock

    ) open
  24. 24
    + 452
    - 292

    Blues-rock, Rock music, Reggae

    ) open
  25. 25
    + 205
    - 195

    Glam metal, New Wave of British Heavy Metal, Blues-rock

    ) open
  26. 26
    + 203
    - 203

    Rudolf Schenker & Uli John Roth

    ) open
  27. 27
    + 301
    - 259

    Blues-rock, Rock music, Instrumental rock

    ) open
  28. 28
    + 289
    - 324

    often listed & ranked high on reranks Blues-rock, Rock music, Heavy metal

    ) open
  29. 29
    + 357
    - 236

    ranked low on reranks Progressive metal, Instrumental rock, Jazz fusion

    ) open
  30. 30
    + 362
    - 266

    ranked low on reranks Kerry King & Jeff Hanneman

    ) open
  31. 31
    + 236
    - 209

    Blues-rock, Rock music, Heavy metal

    ) open
  32. 32
    + 219
    - 214

    Thrash metal, Progressive metal, Instrumental rock

    ) open
  33. 33
    + 158
    - 218

    Glam metal, Heavy metal, Hard rock

    ) open
  34. 34
    + 181
    - 213

    Instrumental rock, Heavy metal, Neo-classical metal

    ) open
  35. 35
    + 231
    - 262

    Rock music, Pop rock, Merseybeat

    ) open
  36. 36
    + 161
    - 212

    Glam metal, Rock music, Funk metal

    ) open
  37. 37
    + 272
    - 285

    Ace Frehley & Paul Stanley

    ) open
  38. 38
    + 114
    - 141

    Glam metal, Heavy metal, Hard rock

    ) open
  39. 39
    + 167
    - 248

    Crossover thrash, Thrash metal, Groove metal

    ) open
  40. 40
    + 193
    - 226

    Joe Perry & Brad Whitford

    ) open
  41. 41
    + 195
    - 241

    Thrash metal, Progressive metal, Technical death metal

    ) open
  42. 42
    + 163
    - 178

    Glam metal, Rock music, Heavy metal

    ) open
  43. 43
    + 109
    - 183

    often listed & ranked high on reranks Chris Degarmo & Michael Wilton

    ) open
  44. 44
    + 208
    - 184

    ranked low on reranks Grunge, Heavy metal, Alternative rock

    ) open
  45. 45
    + 149
    - 187

    often listed & ranked high on reranks Phil Collen & Steve Clarke

    ) open
  46. 46
    + 302
    - 234

    ranked low on reranks Blues-rock, Chicano rock, Pop music

    ) open
  47. 47
    + 158
    - 194

    Alex Skolnick & Eric Peterson

    ) open
  48. 48
    + 80
    - 88

    Glam metal, Blues-rock, Rock music

    ) open
  49. 49
    + 89
    - 32

    ranked low on reranks & added by da54 Blues-rock, Rock music, Experimental rock

    ) open
  50. 50
    + 84
    - 77

    Rock music, Acoustic music, Heavy metal

    ) open
141 +

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