26 Most Influential Rock Bands of All Time

Where does your favourtie rock band rank?

Rock is one of the most popular and iconic genres of music. With its evolving sound from the 1950s through to the present day, one thing is clear - rock music is here to stay!

We take a look back through the years at the most influential heavy rock bands to ever grace the stage. Excluding U2 and The Beatles, we're only rating bands that fall into the typical hard rock and heavy metal category.

Please let us know what you think and feel free to leave your comments below...

26 Kiss
An American hard rock band which formed in New York City in January 1973 by Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons, Kiss were every parents nightmare. The world went crazy for this heavy rock band which played a key role in the influence of the current crop of darker bands such as Marilyn Manson.

25 Foo Fighters
Foo Fighters is an American rock band, formed in Seattle in 1994. It was founded by Nirvana drummer Dave Grohl as a one-man project following the death of Kurt Cobain and the resulting dissolution of his previous band. Foo Fighters gained huge success in the late 90s and continue to be one of the leading rock bands today.

24 Pantera
Pantera was an American heavy metal band from Arlington, Texas. The group was formed in 1981 by the Abbott brothers – drummer Vinnie Paul and guitarist Dimebag Darrell, along with vocalist Terry Glaze. Pantera were a gritty rock band with a unique sound that paved the way for much of what we heard in the 90s sound of rock.

23 Judas Priest
Judas Priest are an English heavy metal band formed in Birmingham. The band has sold over 45 million albums to date and MTV ranked them the second "Greatest Metal Band" of all time. This band was well ahead of its time, always pushing the boundaries of heavy rock music.

22 Aerosmith
The bad boys from Boston reached their peak in the 70s and 80s but held their own during the 90s too. In Steve Tyler, Aerosmith have one of the greatest rock vocalists of all time. This classic rock band also inspired many future bands such as Guns N' Roses.

21 Megadeth
Megadeth is an American thrash metal band from Los Angeles, California. The group was formed in 1983 by guitarist Dave Mustaine and bassist David Ellefson. Although they were never as big as their closest rivals Metaliica, Megadeth have played a key role in the formation and development of heavy rock music.

20 Van Halen
Van Halen is an American rock band formed in Pasadena, California. From 1974 until 1985, the band comprised guitarist Eddie Van Halen, vocalist David Lee Roth, drummer Alex Van Halen, and bassist Michael Anthony. Van Halen will always be remembered as one of the popular and influential rock bands in history.

19 Mötley Crüe
Mötley Crüe is an American heavy metal band formed in Los Angeles, California, in 1981. The group was founded by bassist Nikki Sixx and drummer Tommy Lee, who were later joined by guitarist Mick Mars, and vocalist Vince Neil.

18 Bon Jovi
Bon Jovi reached their ultimate peak in the mid-90s, with huge records like Keep The Faith and These Days dominating the charts. For all their musical changes over the years, Bon Jovi still remain one of the most influential rock bands of all time.

17 Pearl Jam
Pearl Jam was another band that heavily influenced the rock scene in the 90s. In a similar way as Korn and many other bands alike, Pearl Jam broke away from the conventional image and sound of rock, appealing to a newer, fresher audience.

16 Motörhead
When it comes to big, bad and ugly, it doesn't get much better than the British heavy rock band, Motorhead. Packed with grit and bad-ass attitude, Lemmy and his boys were pumping out their hits throughout the 70s, 80s and 90s, cementing their place in rock and roll folklore in the process.

15 Rush
Rush is a Canadian rock band formed in August 1968 in the Willowdale neighbourhood of Toronto, Ontario. Introduced into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Rush will surely go down as one of the most influential rock bands in history.

14 Def Leppard
The boys from Sheffield proved to be one of the biggest bands on the planet when they hit their groove in the 80s. Def Leppard have been one of England's most successful exports and continue to go strong, even to this day.

13 Scorpions
Scorpions are a German rock band founded in 1965 in Hannover by Rudolf Schenker. It is one of the most famous and longest existing rock bands in the world, and the first non Anglo-Saxon rock band that achieved success with international importance.

12 Poison
Poison is an American glam metal band that achieved great commercial success in the mid-80s to the mid-90s. This hugely popular band has sold over 45 million records worldwide and have sold 15 million records in the USA alone.

11 Iron Maiden
Iron Maiden are an English heavy metal band formed in Leyton, east London, in 1975 by bassist and primary songwriter Steve Harris. With Harris alongside Bruce Dickinson, Iron Maiden would continue to pack out stadiums throughout the 80s and 90s. Still to this day, you will not find a band that sounds just as unique as the Irons.

10 Led Zeppelin
Led Zeppelin were an English rock band formed in London in 1968. The group consisted of the hugely talented guitarist Jimmy Page, singer Robert Plant, bassist and keyboardist John Paul Jones, and drummer John Bonham. Stairway To Heaven remains one of the most iconic rock songs of all time.

09 Black Sabbath
Black Sabbath are an English rock band, formed in Birmingham in 1968, by guitarist and main songwriter Tony Iommi, bassist and main lyricist Geezer Butler, singer Ozzy Osbourne, and drummer Bill Ward. Controversial at times, this heavy rock band created guitar rifts and ballads that will live long in the history of rock music.

08 The Rolling Stones
The Rolling Stones are an English rock band formed in London. The first settled line-up consisted of Brian Jones, Ian Stewart, Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Bill Wyman, and Charlie Watts. The Rolling Stones took rock to a new level back in the 60s with their brave approach. This iconic band were the main inspiration for later bands like Aerosmith.

07 Pink Floyd
Pink Floyd were an English rock band formed in London. They achieved international acclaim with their progressive and psychedelic music. Well ahead of their time, Pink Floyd would play a key role not just in the rock world, but always in the development of electronic musical genres such as trance.

06 The Who
The Who are an English rock band that formed in 1964. Their classic line-up consisted of lead singer Roger Daltrey, guitarist Pete Townshend, bassist John Entwistle, and drummer Keith Moon. The Who remain one of the best known and loved rock bands to ever hit the music scene.

05 Nirvana
Nirvana was an American rock band that was formed by singer/guitarist Kurt Cobain and bassist Krist Novoselic in Aberdeen, Washington. Nirvana created a new genre of rock by the name of grunge. Grunge music was to be the next big thing during the 90s, influencing successful bands such as Offspring, Blink 182 and Sum 41.

04 Guns N' Roses
Guns N' Roses were known as the most dangerous band in the world, during their peak years in the 80s and early-90s. Guns N' Roses were one of the most successful rock bands in history and by 1993 they were bigger than both Metallica and Nirvana combined. 1996 saw one of the most famous ever splits of a rock band, and to this day they have never been the same.

03 Metallica
Metallica are the most successful heavy metal band in history, and they have managed to do what no other band has done - to evolve with the musical times as well as gain new fans along the way. When it comes to fan loyalty, Metallica are the best in the business. A truly influential band that will always be remembered up there with the very best.

02 AC/DC
AC/DC are an Australian hard rock band, formed in November 1973 by brothers Malcolm and Angus Young, who continued as members until Malcolm's illness and departure in 2014. Selling out stadiums all over the world since the 70s, AC/DC have influenced many of the bands that thrived in the 80s and 90s, and as far as record sales go, no band has bettered this dynamic act.

01 Queen
Queen are a British rock band formed in London, originally consisting of Freddie Mercury, Brian May, John Deacon, and Roger Taylor. Queen have produced some of the most iconic songs in rock history and their lead singer, Freddie Mercury, will always be remembered as the best frontman to ever grace a stage. Well ahead of their years, it's frightening to think what this band could have achieved had Mercury's tragic death not put an end to their momentum.

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  1. Not the Beatles...are you guys fucking retards or what?!?

    1. Thy did say "excluding U2 and The Beatles, we're only rating bands that fall into the typical hard rock and heavy metal category."


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