Albums The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked  

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
29.7k votes 1.7k voters 11k views 280 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.

1
357 382
Led Zeppelin is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Led Zeppelin Led Zeppelin

2
302 237
The Doors is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Doors The Doors

3
328 399
Appetite for Destruction is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Appetite for Destruction Guns N' Roses

4
274 222
The Cars is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Cars The Cars

5
225 330
Black Sabbath is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Black Sabbath Black Sabbath

6
228 224
(pronounced 'lĕh-'nérd 'skin-'... is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked

7
284 366
Are You Experienced is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Are You Experienced The Jimi Hendrix Experience

8
294 263
Van Halen is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Van Halen Van Halen

9
345 241
Boston is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Boston Boston

10
199 246
Please Please Me is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Please Please Me The Beatles

11
195 191
My Generation is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
My Generation The Who

12
155 221
The Piper at the Gates of Dawn is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked

13
177 105
Foreigner is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Foreigner Foreigner

14
254 353
Ten is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Ten Pearl Jam

15
188 263
The Velvet Underground & Nico is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Velvet Underground & Nico Nico, The Velvet Underground

16
84 104
Pretenders is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Pretenders The Pretenders

17
160 233
In the Court of the Crimson Ki... is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked

18
124 82
Creedence Clearwater Revival is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Creedence Clearwater Revival Creedence Clearwater Revival

19
128 115
Crosby, Stills & Nash is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Crosby, Stills & Nash Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young

20
107 89
Music From Big Pink is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked

21
86 47
Bad Company is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
chris-dagosta added Bad Company Bad Company

22
49 63
The Monkees is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Monkees The Monkees

23
107 73
Talking Heads: 77 is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Talking Heads: 77 Talking Heads

24
104 129
Fresh Cream is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Fresh Cream Cream

25
153 134
Queen is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Queen Queen

26
160 143
Blizzard of Ozz is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Blizzard of Ozz Ozzy Osbourne

27
108 87
Blondie is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Blondie Blondie

28
127 188
The Slim Shady LP is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked

29
119 61
Cuts Like a Knife is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Twiggsy added Cuts Like a Knife Bryan Adams

30
107 97
Aerosmith is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Aerosmith Aerosmith

31
53 31
Tom Petty and the Heartbreaker... is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Bill Little added Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers

32
117 64
Get the Knack is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Twiggsy added Get the Knack The Knack

33
68 100
Emerson, Lake and Palmer is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Emerson, Lake and Palmer Emerson, Lake & Palmer

34
131 268
Ramones is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Ramones Ramones

35
153 256
Never Mind the Bollocks, Here'... is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked

36
172 241
Rage Against the Machine is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Rage Against the Machine Rage Against the Machine

37
77 94
Horses is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Horses Patti Smith

38
148 264
The Clash is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Clash The Clash

39
126 225
Straight Outta Compton is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked

40
106 192
Dire Straits is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Dire Straits Dire Straits

41
92 97
Boy is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Boy U2

42
71 69
The B-52’s is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The B-52’s The B-52's

43
59 20
High Voltage is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Twiggsy added High Voltage AC/DC

44
51 47
Can't Buy a Thrill is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Bill Little added Can't Buy a Thrill Steely Dan

45
56 76
Shades of Deep Purple is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Shades of Deep Purple Deep Purple

46
109 86
Elvis Presley (Legacy Edition) is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked

47
57 87
The Chronic is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Matt1345 added The Chronic Dr. Dre

48
107 173
Outlandos d'Amour is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Outlandos d'Amour The Police

49
49 18
Cheap Trick is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Twiggsy added Cheap Trick Cheap Trick

50
103 83
Out of the Cellar is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked