metal The Best Death Metal Bands  

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Not to be confused with thrash metal and black metal, though both of which are instrumental in shaping its sound, death metal is one of the most popular subgenres of heavy metal. Known for its distorted guitars, aggressive drumming, and growling and screaming vocals, death metal emerged in the 1980s in Florida and is still one of the best metal genres today. Lyrically, death metal addresses exactly what you'd expect the genre to focus on. Satanism, the occult, religion, politics, mysticism and science fiction have all found their into death metal bands' lyrics. The best death metal bands have cult followings and among heavy metal bands, their fanbases are among the most rabid.

So, what are the best death metal bands? Well, bands like Death, Cannibal Corpse and Morbid Angel are at or near the top of the death metal bands list and deservedly so. They are among the most popular death metal bands and among death metal bands, are generally the most talked about bands within death metal. While many of the death metal bands on here achieved most of their success during the early 1990s, they were never considered mainstream metal bands. The lack of commercial appeal has allowed death metal bands to retain a strong base.

That said, it's up to you to determine what are the best death metal bands. If you notice someone on this list who is missing, feel free to add any death metal band that should be on this poll. This list answers the questions "who are the best death metal bands of all time?" and "who is the greatest death metal musician ever?" If you know enough about the genre, please vote based on the quality of the band's music instead of just voting for the most popular death metal bands that you might've heard of. (181 items)

1
+ - 453 89
Death is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Death Thrash metal, Progressive metal, Technical death metal

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2
+ - 283 83
Morbid Angel is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Morbid Angel Heavy metal, Death metal

3
+ - 364 146
Cannibal Corpse is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Cannibal Corpse Brutal death metal, Death metal

4
+ - 292 113
Carcass is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Carcass D-beat, Goregrind, Melodic death metal

5
+ - 254 105
Obituary is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Obituary Heavy metal, Death metal

6
+ - 233 101
Deicide is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Deicide Heavy metal, Death metal

7
+ - 187 77
Entombed is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Entombed Death 'n' roll, Heavy metal, Death metal

8
+ - 238 110
Nile is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Nile Technical death metal, Brutal death metal, Death metal

9
+ - 213 96
Suffocation is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Suffocation Deathcore, Brutal death metal, Death metal

10
+ - 139 59
Dismember is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Dismember Melodic death metal, Heavy metal, Death metal

11
+ - 171 80
Bolt Thrower is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Bolt Thrower Doom metal, Heavy metal, Grindcore

12
+ - 114 50
Autopsy is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Autopsy Goregrind, Heavy metal, Grindcore

13
+ - 167 88
Dying Fetus is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Dying Fetus Goregrind, Technical death metal, Heavy metal

14
+ - 100 43
Grave is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Grave Heavy metal, Death metal

15
+ - 219 126
Behemoth is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Behemoth Thrash metal, Technical death metal, Black metal

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16
+ - 151 80
Possessed is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Possessed Thrash metal, Rock music, Black metal

17
+ - 116 57
Cryptopsy is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Cryptopsy Deathcore, Technical death metal, Heavy metal

18
+ - 68 25
Vader is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Vader Thrash metal, Heavy metal, Death metal

19
+ - 144 82
At the Gates is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
At the Gates Thrash metal, Melodic death metal, Heavy metal

20
+ - 122 66
Necrophagist is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Necrophagist Progressive metal, Technical death metal, Heavy metal

21
+ - 95 47
Celtic Frost is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Celtic Frost Doom metal, Glam metal, Thrash metal

22
+ - 109 58
Immolation is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Immolation Technical death metal, Heavy metal, Death metal

23
+ - 147 87
Decapitated is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Decapitated Technical death metal, Heavy metal, Death metal

24
+ - 141 83
Bloodbath is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Bloodbath Heavy metal, Death metal

25
+ - 98 51
Gorguts is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Gorguts Technical death metal, Heavy metal, Experimental metal

26
+ - 53 18
Atheist is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Atheist Thrash metal, Progressive metal, Technical death metal

27
+ - 118 68
Malevolent Creation is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Malevolent Creation Thrash metal, Heavy metal, Death metal

28
+ - 175 114
Sepultura is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Sepultura Nu metal, Heavy metal, Extreme metal

29
+ - 89 48
Unleashed is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Unleashed Melodic death metal, Viking metal, Heavy metal

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30
+ - 80 41
Asphyx is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Asphyx Death-doom, Thrash metal, Heavy metal

31
+ - 138 91
Arch Enemy is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Arch Enemy Thrash metal, Melodic death metal, Heavy metal

32
+ - 104 70
Kataklysm is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Kataklysm Melodic death metal, Heavy metal, Death metal

33
+ - 138 99
Gojira is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Gojira Thrash metal, Progressive metal, Groove metal

34
+ - 110 76
Opeth is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Opeth Doom metal, Thrash metal, Progressive metal

35
+ - 49 24
Cattle Decapitation is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Cattle Decapitation Goregrind, Heavy metal, Deathgrind

36
+ - 68 41
Incantation is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Incantation Black metal, Heavy metal, Death metal

37
+ - 117 85
Kreator is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Kreator Thrash metal, Gothic rock, Industrial metal

38
+ - 54 32
Carnage is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Carnage Heavy metal, Grindcore, Death metal

39
+ - 35 16
Nocturnus is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Nocturnus Technical death metal, Heavy metal, Death metal

40
+ - 110 88
In Flames is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
In Flames Nu metal, Melodic death metal, Metalcore

41
+ - 68 49
Massacre is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Massacre Heavy metal, Death metal

42
+ - 74 55
Fleshgod Apocalypse is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Fleshgod Apocalypse Melodic death metal, Technical death metal, Symphonic metal

43
+ - 45 29
Sinister is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Sinister Heavy metal, Death metal

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44
+ - 101 84
Dark Tranquillity is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Dark Tranquillity Progressive metal, Melodic death metal, Heavy metal

45
+ - 71 57
Krisiun is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Krisiun Technical death metal, Brutal death metal, Death metal

46
+ - 46 35
Benediction is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Benediction Heavy metal, Death metal

47
+ - 93 83
Children of Bodom is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Children of Bodom Thrash metal, Progressive metal, Symphonic black metal

48
+ - 44 34
Anaal Nathrakh is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Anaal Nathrakh Industrial metal, Technical death metal, Black metal

49
+ - 37 27
Mortician is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Mortician Goregrind, Heavy metal, Deathgrind

50
+ - 42 33
Necrophagia is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Death Metal Bands
Necrophagia Death metal