Albums The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked  

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
56.4k votes 3k voters 18.6k views 288 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
330 586
The Slim Shady LP is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked

2
768 511
Led Zeppelin is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Led Zeppelin

3
224 359
The Chronic is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Matt1345 added Dr. Dre

4
126 328
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
441 456
Black Sabbath is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Black Sabbath

6
612 345
The Doors is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Doors

7
561 495
Are You Experienced is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Jimi Hendrix Experience

8
601 536
Appetite for Destruction is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Guns N' Roses

9
461 343
(pronounced 'lĕh-'nérd 'skin-'... is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked

10
568 352
Van Halen is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Van Halen

11
383 350
Please Please Me is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Beatles

12
512 343
The Cars is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Cars

13
137 204
The Monkees is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Monkees

14
259 438
Straight Outta Compton is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked

15
630 338
Boston is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Boston

16
347 273
My Generation is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Who

17
272 325
The Piper at the Gates of Dawn is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked

18
421 518
Ten is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Pearl Jam

19
325 410
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
184 191
Pretenders is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Pretenders

21
269 374
In the Court of the Crimson Ki... is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked

22
210 194
Fresh Cream is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Cream

23
234 396
Ramones is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Ramones

24
271 111
Bad Company is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
chris-dagosta added Bad Company

25
241 179
Crosby, Stills & Nash is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young