Albums The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked  

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
54.4k votes 2.9k voters 17.9k views 291 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
311 542
The Slim Shady LP is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked

2
731 496
Led Zeppelin is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Led Zeppelin

3
207 333
The Chronic is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Matt1345 added Dr. Dre

4
112 296
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
423 449
Black Sabbath is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Black Sabbath

6
579 339
The Doors is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Doors

7
537 483
Are You Experienced is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Jimi Hendrix Experience

8
583 527
Appetite for Destruction is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Guns N' Roses

9
448 332
(pronounced 'lĕh-'nérd 'skin-'... is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked

10
368 341
Please Please Me is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Beatles

11
548 343
Van Halen is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Van Halen

12
492 335
The Cars is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Cars

13
132 189
The Monkees is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Monkees

14
249 419
Straight Outta Compton is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked

15
611 327
Boston is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Boston

16
336 268
My Generation is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Who

17
261 317
The Piper at the Gates of Dawn is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked

18
399 503
Ten is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Pearl Jam

19
310 401
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
174 184
Pretenders is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Pretenders

21
258 363
In the Court of the Crimson Ki... is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked

22
202 188
Fresh Cream is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Cream

23
227 385
Ramones is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Ramones

24
260 103
Bad Company is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
chris-dagosta added Bad Company

25
336 173
Foreigner is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Foreigner

26
234 174
Crosby, Stills & Nash is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young

27
144 159
Emerson, Lake and Palmer is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Emerson, Lake & Palmer

28
257 128
Creedence Clearwater Revival is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Creedence Clearwater Revival

29
200 290
Dire Straits is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Dire Straits

30
289 178
Queen is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Queen

31
231 377
The Clash is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Clash

32
231 382
Never Mind the Bollocks, Here'... is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked

33
160 82
Tom Petty and the Heartbreaker... is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Bill Little added Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers

34
165 159
Music From Big Pink is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked

35
272 205
Blizzard of Ozz is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Ozzy Osbourne

36
193 129
Talking Heads: 77 is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Talking Heads

37
198 141
Blondie is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Blondie

38
112 129
Shades of Deep Purple is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Deep Purple

39
190 154
Aerosmith is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Aerosmith

40
258 365
Rage Against the Machine is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Rage Against the Machine

41
126 161
Horses is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Patti Smith

42
134 295
The Stooges is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Stooges

43
74 38
Eric Clapton is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
stratopimp added Eric Clapton

44
88 55
Eagles is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Darian G. Burns added Eagles

45
74 46
Texas Flood is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
stratopimp added Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Double Trouble

46
213 58
High Voltage is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Twiggsy added AC/DC

47
168 269
Outlandos d'Amour is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
The Police

48
110 101
Can't Buy a Thrill is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Bill Little added Steely Dan

49
117 298
Marquee Moon is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Television

50
95 90
Mr. Tambourine Man is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Debut Albums of All Time, Ranked
Mr. Tambourine Man