Since I already did the female list, it’s time for the male list. My top five male Metal singers.
#5 – Bruce Dickinson
I’m a minority here. Very few people prefer the Paul Di’Anno albums because as a singer, Dickinson is superior. However, musically, I’m very attached to the first two Iron Maiden albums. But I’m a huge fan of Dickinson’s solo work in the 90s.
So, music aside, Dickinson has all the qualities of a great Metal singer. Hard work, dedication, perseverance, charisma, and of course, the air raid siren. That was his nickname in the 80s – the Air Raid Siren.
He brings it every show and he’s the reason Maiden grew from being a really well-liked band into one of the biggest Metal bands of all-time. Everyone knows Maiden now, and everyone my age claims to have liked Maiden in the 80s. Bullshit! I know who did and who didn’t. Fucking poseurs.
Dickinson blows away any pop singer today. By far.
#4 – Ville Valo
I’ll get a lot of flack for one, calling Ville Valo a Metal singer, and for another, ranking him on my list above Dickinson. Whatever. It’s my list, not yours.
Valo writes music to fuck to. And people today don’t fuck enough. The world has become too serious. Yet another reason we need a rebirth of Romanticism.
Deep Shadows and Brilliant Highlights is one of my favorite albums of all-time. You’re free to hate them, I could care less. But if you think he doesn’t have a spectacular voice, you’re a moron.
Ville Valo has a spectacular voice. I’ve seen them live. He can sing. That’s not just really good sound engineering.
#3 – Ozzy Osbourne
Now, Ozzy on the other hand doesn’t have a great voice. Dickinson and Valo are both technically superior singers.
Technically. But when it comes to impact, nobody on the planet has more charisma than Ozzy Osbourne. Nobody.
Even after Randy Rhoads’ death, when he was broken, he still brought it. No coincidence he went on to have the highly successful Ozzfest and also the highly successful TV show with his family. Imagine having a TV show with someone like Bono. My word. Boring!
Ozzy was the first Metal singer and to this day, the most charismatic. Plus, despite not technically having a great voice, his voice is definitely unmistakable. I can’t imagine anyone else singing in his place.
#2 – Ronnie James Dio
Speaking of singing in Ozzy’s place, that was totally unplanned. Complete coincidence. But if you know what I mean, kudos.
I loved the Dio Sabbath albums. Of course not as much as Ozzy’s first two solo albums. But still, spectacular albums.
I loved Dio in Blackmore’s Rainbow as well. That was one hell of a Metal band. Well, technically proto-Metal. But whatever.
Dio had a beautiful voice. If you never heard the beautiful side to his singing, look up Rainbow’s Catch the Rainbow, Black Sabbath’s Falling off the Edge of the World, or Dio’s As Long As It’s Not About Love.
#1 – Rob Halford
Rob Halford is the epitome of Metal singers. And Judas Priest is the epitome of Metal bands. But let’s only talk about Rob Halford.
Halford wrote the book for all Metal singers to follow. Yes, Ozzy came first. But Halford brought us the scream. Halford brought us leather, spikes, and chains. Halford brought super-hyped up machismo into Metal, and it’s remained a prominent part of Metal ever since.
When it comes to voices, no coincidence Luciano Pavarotti himself said that Halford “has one of the ten best voices in the world.” Damn right!
Victim of Changes alone in 1976 showcased several of his voices. Painkiller in 1990 showed us some otherworldly screams. And all his voices on British Steel were just “cool.”
Male Metal Singers – Honorable Mentions
Now this is the part I hate doing. I noticed that my top five women Metal singers were all recent and my top five Metal singers are all older. That said, I’m still not going to mention someone who doesn’t deserve it.
Geoff Tate of Queensryche had a spectacular voice, but I’ve seen them live twice and was really disappointed as he takes it too easy live and doesn’t hold any notes. Tim Owens has a pretty amazing voice, and if anyone had to temporarily replace Halford, Owens was a good decision. And of course, I have to give a nod to King Diamond as his voice sent chills down my spine when I first heard it.
To be honest though, I can talk forever about honorable mentions here. It would be like listing my top 100 guitarists. So I’m stopping. Right now.