Albums The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked  

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
56.7k votes 3k voters 18.6k views 287 items

List Rules Only debut studio albums allowed. No sophomore albums, EPs, mix tapes, or compilations.

It’s no coincidence that great bands and artists have some of the best debut albums of all time. You can tell a lot about a music artist from their first album, for better or worse. A debut album sets the stage for what audiences can expect, including genre, style, inventiveness, and many more details. For some talented artists, a debut album can be genre changing and influence pop culture. But what are the greatest debut albums of all time? See what music lovers have to say in the ranking below.

For some bands, a debut album may be their best work or even their only work. More than a few break up after their first effort. For many others, it may be their best work and they may end up being one-hit wonders. Not many artists continue to find more success after initial efforts.

For the purpose of this list however, we only care about that first seminal album. So vote for the artists that you think have the very best debut albums of all time. No sophomore albums allowed. If you don’t see a particularly great debut album listed, add it so that others may vote on it. All genres welcome.

list ordered by

1
330 591
The Slim Shady LP is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked

2
772 511
Led Zeppelin is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Led Zeppelin

3
224 360
The Chronic is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Matt1345 added Dr. Dre

4
126 329
Get Rich or Die Tryin' is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Matt1345 added 50 Cent

5
442 456
Black Sabbath is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Black Sabbath

6
614 346
The Doors is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Doors

7
563 495
Are You Experienced is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Jimi Hendrix Experience

8
604 536
Appetite for Destruction is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Guns N' Roses

9
463 343
(pronounced 'lĕh-'nérd 'skin-'... is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked

10
570 352
Van Halen is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Van Halen

11
384 350
Please Please Me is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Beatles

12
513 344
The Cars is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Cars

13
137 205
The Monkees is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Monkees

14
259 439
Straight Outta Compton is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked

15
631 339
Boston is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Boston

16
348 273
My Generation is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Who

17
274 325
The Piper at the Gates of Dawn is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked

18
423 518
Ten is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Pearl Jam

19
326 411
The Velvet Underground & Nico is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Nico, The Velvet Underground

20
185 191
Pretenders is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Pretenders

21
270 375
In the Court of the Crimson Ki... is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked

22
210 195
Fresh Cream is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Cream

23
235 396
Ramones is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Ramones

24
272 111
Bad Company is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
chris-dagosta added Bad Company

25
241 180
Crosby, Stills & Nash is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young