80s The Best '80s Metal Songs  

Ranker Music
1.5k votes 90 voters 1k views 111 items

What are the best metal songs from the decade that brought the genre from the fringe it enjoyed in the 1970s to the mainstream in the '80s? To answer that question, let's rank the best '80s metal songs that truly defined the decade and inspired all of the metal acts that followed in the '90s and beyond.

The 1980s is one of the best decades to feature metal music thanks to the growing popularity of the genre. These were the years that Ozzy Osbourne killed it with solo hits like "Crazy Train" and Iron Maiden hit the airwaves with "Wrathchild." Slayer's "Angel of Death" kicked off the band's opening track of their 1986 album Reign in Blood with an analysis of Dr. Joseph Mengele and his actions during WWII. That level of depth was especially common in '80s metal, which is one of the reasons the genre solidified itself during the decade. Some other incredible tracks from the age of hair bands include Dio's "Holy Diver," Exodus' "Strike of the Beast," and Motorhead's "Ace of Spades."

Vote up your favorite '80s metal songs on this ranked list, and add any tracks that aren't here already.

list ordered by
1
35 11
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The Number of the Beast Iron Maiden
2
34 13
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Metallica
3
34 15
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Ozzy Osbourne
4
27 12
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Motorhead
5
23 11
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Iron Maiden
6
25 13
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Metallica
7
28 17
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Metallica
8
21 12
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Metallica
9
24 15
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10
25 16
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Metallica
11
28 19
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Guns N' Roses
12
23 15
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Iron Maiden
13
18 11
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Slayer
14
14 8
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Clark Benson added Black Sabbath
15
16 12
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The Last in Line Dio
16
9 5
Flight of Icarus is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best '80s Metal Songs
Iron Maiden
17
6 2
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18
21 18
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Mötley Crüe
19
17 14
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Breaking The Law Judas Priest
20
14 11
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Ozzy Osbourne
21
10 7
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Clark Benson added Cinderella
22
10 7
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Metallica
23
11 9
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Electric Eye Judas Priest
24
14 13
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Metallica
25
10 9
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Clark Benson added Def Leppard