The Best Heavy Metal Music from 1989-93

This article is a collaborative effort, crafted and edited by a team of dedicated professionals.

Contributors: Andranick Tanguiane, Fred Lerdahl,


A comprehensive guide to the best heavy metal music from 1989-93, discussing the top bands and albums from the genre.

Best Metal Albums of 1989

There are many different ways to categorize and quantify the best heavy metal music from 1989-1993. However, for the purposes of this article, we will focus on the best metal albums of 1989. This was a particularly strong year for the genre, with many classic albums being released. Here are our picks for the best metal albums of 1989:

-Metallica – …And Justice For All
-Slayer – Seasons in the Abyss
-Megadeth – Rust in Peace
-Anthrax – Persistence of Time
-Pantera – Cowboys from Hell

Best Metal Albums of 1990

In 1990, a new wave of metal bands began to emerge and metal music entered a new era. These bands combined the speed and aggression of thrash metal with the power and precision of death metal to create a sound that was both heavier and more technical than anything that had come before. This new style of metal would come to be known as “death metal”, and it would dominate the metal scene for the next few years.

There were many great death metal albums released in 1990, but these are the 10 best:

1. Death – “Human”
2. Obituary – “Cause of Death”
3. Cannibal Corpse – “Eaten Back to Life”
4. Deicide – “Deicide”
5. Morbid Angel – “ Altars of Madness”
6. Entombed – “Clandestine”
7. Autopsy – “Mental Funeral”
8. Benediction – “Subconscious Terror”
9. Asphyx – “The Rack”
10. Hypocrisy – “Penetralia”

Best Metal Albums of 1991

There are many great metal albums from 1991, but these are some of the best:

-Metallica – Metallica: This self-titled album, often referred to as “The Black Album,” is one of the best selling metal albums of all time. It features some of Metallica’s most popular songs, such as “Enter Sandman” and “Sad but True.”

-Guns N’ Roses – Use Your Illusion I & II: These two albums were released simultaneously and feature some of Guns N’ Roses’ most popular songs, including “Don’t Cry” and “November Rain.”

-Pantera – Cowboys from Hell: This is Pantera’s fifth studio album and it is considered to be one of their best. It features the song “Walk,” which is one of their most popular songs.

-Pearl Jam – Ten: Pearl Jam’s debut album features some of their most popular songs, such as “Alive,” “Jeremy,” and “Even Flow.”

-Nirvana – Nevermind: Nirvana’s second studio album features the band’s most popular song, “Smells Like Teen Spirit.”

Best Metal Albums of 1992

Looking back at the best heavy metal albums of 1992, it’s easy to see why the genre was in such a state of flux. Some of the biggest bands of the 1980s, like Metallica and Megadeth, were releasing some of their best work, while newer bands like Pantera and Sepultura were starting to make waves. On the other side of the Atlantic, British metal was undergoing its own renaissance, led by bands like Iron Maiden and Judas Priest.

In other words, there was a lot to choose from if you were a metal fan in 1992. Here are 10 of the best metal albums that were released that year.

1) Metallica – “Metallica” (also known as “The Black Album”)
2) Megadeth – “Countdown to Extinction”
3) Pantera – “Vulgar Display of Power”
4) Sepultura – “Arise”
5) Iron Maiden – “Fear of the Dark”
6) Judas Priest – “Painkiller”
7) Alice in Chains – “Dirt”
8) Soundgarden – “Badmotorfinger”
9) Rage Against the Machine – “Rage Against the Machine”
10) Nirvana – “Nevermind”

Best Metal Albums of 1993

In 1993, the world of heavy metal music was in a state of transition. Grunge had taken over the mainstream, and metal was being forced to adapt or die. But in the underground, metal was thriving. This was the era of death metal, black metal, and power metal – three subgenres that would come to define heavy metal in the years to come.

And while there were some great albums released by more established bands like Metallica, Iron Maiden, and Megadeth, it was the younger bands who were really making an impact in 1993. Here are 10 of the best heavy metal albums released that year.

1) Death – “Individual Thought Patterns”
2) Obituary – “cause of Death”
3) Morbid Angel – “Covenant”
4) Black Sabbath – “Cross Purposes”
5) Slayer – “Divine Intervention”
6) Carcass – “Heartwork”
7) Entombed – “Wolverine Blues”
8) Sepultura – “Chaos A.D.”
9) Amon Amarth – “Once Sent from the Golden Hall”
10) In Flames – “Lunar Strain”

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