Black Metal The Greatest Black Metal Bands  

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List Rules Upvote your favorite black metal groups.

Known for fast tempos, shrieking vocals, distorted guitars and lo-fi recordings, black metal has emerged as one of the top heavy metal genres. Similarly to avant garde metal bands, black metal bands also feature unconventional song structures and lyrical emphasis on atmosphere. What does make black metal bands different than every other heavy metal band is that the band often will appear in corpse paint that looks like blood. A lot of the best black metal bands emerged in the first wave of black metal bands are still among the most beloved and most popular black metal bands. The genre originated in the 1980s and became associated with satanism and anti-religion lyrics.

So, what are the best black metal bands? Well for starters, any black metal bands list has to include the likes of Mayhem, Darkthrone, Burzum, Marduk and Deafheaven. Mixing black metal bands old and new, this list of black metal bands includes every great black metal band to have ever played. These are widely considered some of the top black metal bands. 

That said, it's up to you to decide what are the best black metal bands. If you notice a black metal band that isn't on this list, feel free to add them. This list answers the questions "who are the best black metal bands of all time?" and "who is the greatest black metal musician ever?" If you know enough about the genre, please vote based on the quality of the band's music instead of just voting for the most popular black metal bands that you might've heard of

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list ordered by

1
440 174
Darkthrone is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Black Metal Bands
Crossover thrash, Black metal, Crust punk

2
407 196
Mayhem is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Black Metal Bands
Black metal, Heavy metal

3
427 187
Bathory is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Black Metal Bands
Thrash metal, Viking metal, Black metal

4
359 165
Emperor is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Black Metal Bands
Progressive metal, Symphonic black metal, Black metal

5
389 159
Immortal is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Black Metal Bands
Thrash metal, Black metal, Heavy metal

6
417 199
Burzum is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Black Metal Bands
Dark ambient, Black ambient, Black metal

7
307 120
Marduk is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Black Metal Bands
Black metal, Heavy metal, Blackened death metal

8
347 162
Gorgoroth is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Black Metal Bands
Black metal, Heavy metal

9
282 134
Satyricon is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Black Metal Bands
Medieval music, Medieval metal, Thrash metal

10
300 117
Dark Funeral is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Black Metal Bands
Thrash metal, Black metal, Heavy metal

11
367 198
Behemoth is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Black Metal Bands
Thrash metal, Technical death metal, Black metal

12
185 88
Dissection is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Black Metal Bands
Melodic death metal, Black metal, Heavy metal

13
206 121
Dimmu Borgir is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Black Metal Bands
Dustin Moore added Symphonic black metal, Gothic metal, Black metal

14
230 117
Celtic Frost is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Black Metal Bands
Doom metal, Glam metal, Thrash metal

15
220 131
Venom is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Black Metal Bands
New Wave of British Heavy Metal, Thrash metal, Black metal

16
178 102
Rotting Christ is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Black Metal Bands
Gothic metal, Black metal, Heavy metal

17
170 92
Taake is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Black Metal Bands
Viking metal, Black metal, Heavy metal

18
118 54
Mgła is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Black Metal Bands
Black metal

19
195 116
Enslaved is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Black Metal Bands
Progressive metal, Viking metal, Black metal

20
176 105
1349 is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Black Metal Bands
Black metal, Heavy metal

21
172 105
Watain is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Black Metal Bands
Thrash metal, Black metal, Heavy metal

22
117 74
Ulver is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Black Metal Bands
Folk music, Electronic music, Gothic metal

23
127 74
Old Man's Child is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Black Metal Bands
Symphonic black metal, Black metal, Heavy metal

24
123 79
Belphegor is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Black Metal Bands
Black metal, Blackened death metal, Death metal

25
119 76
Carpathian Forest is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Black Metal Bands
Black metal, Heavy metal