Searching for songs with heavy drums? You will find it in hard rock and metal music.
From the classic songs by Sepultura, Metallica, and Iron Maiden, to experimental ones by the bands such as Tool, the list could go on and on.
Here is our choice of monster tunes with outstanding drums delivered by some of the best drummers in the world.
1. Slipknot – The Blister Exist
American metal band Slipknot was always known for its strong percussion led by Joey Jordison, one of the best drummers in the world, who sadly passed away in 2021.
“The Blister Exists” is the song from the band’s third studio album, “Vol. 3: The Subliminal Verses,” released in 2004.
This tune is a pure example of songs with heavy drums.
It is known for its remarkable marching snare drum solo by Joey and two other percussionists, Shawn Crahan and Chris Fehn.
The song even appeared in the video game Prince of Persia: Warrior Within.
2. Children of Bodom – Bodom Beach Terror
“Bodom Beach Terror” is a kick-ass song by Finnish melodic death metal band Children of Bodom.
The song was released in 2003 on the band’s fourth studio album, “Hate Crew Deathroll,” the final Children of Bodom album to be recorded with all five original members.
Jaska Raatikainen, the band’s drummer, is all over the song, boosting it with explosive energy.
Jaska formed Children of Bodom with Alexi Laiho in 1993 (under the name Inearthed), and even though he was only 14 years old, he showed the incredible talent that only improved over the years.
3. Gojira – The Heaviest Matter of the Universe
“The Heaviest Matter of the Universe” has one of the heaviest drum leads, played by Gojira’s backbone – the drummer Mario Duplantier.
Gojira is a technical death metal band from France, and this song is the sixth song from their third studio album, “From Mars To Sirius”, released in 2005.
Mario starts shooting the beats from the very beginning of the song, and he doesn’t stop building up the force with a machine gun-like double bass until the end.
4. Tool – Ticks & Leeches
Tool is an American band that is hard to fit in one category.
Their songs go from rock to metal, with a lot of experiments, delivering unique and innovative music.
“Tick & Leeches” is one of the songs where the drummer Danny Carey once again proves why he is considered one of the best drummers in the world.
Danny’s excellent tom-tom work creates a groove with layers and melody, and he delivers diversity in sound, dynamics, and odd time-signature as usual.
5. Testament – Fall of Sipledome
“Fall of Sipledome” is the last song on the eighth studio album by American thrash metal band Testament, released in 1999.
The “The Godfather of Double Bass” Dave Lombardo, famous for being a part of the band Slayer, joined Testament for this album and did what he does best.
The result is a noticeably different sound from what Testament did before, but fans seem to love the mix of thrash and death metal they brought with this album.
The song “Fall of Sipledome” is a perfect example of Lombardo’s killer drum attack with a fast and aggressive style of play, utilizing the double bass technique.
6. Slayer – Silent Scream
Back to legendary Dave Lombardo and his aggressive and precise monster drumming.
“Silent Scream” is a second track from Slayer’s fourth studio album “South of Heaven”, released in 1988.
Before the album was recorded, Lombardo briefly left the band.
His return in 1987 resulted in the creation of legendary tunes such as “Silent Scream” with the drummer’s unique groove all over the place.
7. Iron Maiden – Be quick or be dead
The list of songs with heavy drums couldn’t go without English heavy metal legends Iron Maiden and their legendary drummer Nicko McBrain.
“Be quick or be dead” is the song that all rock and metal music fans know by heart, and it has an opening spot on the band’s ninth studio album “Fear of the Dark” in 1992.
The song is faster and heavier than most Iron Maiden songs, featuring Nicko’s brisk, precise and unique drumming.
His style is punchy and distinctive and always followed by his great enthusiasm for playing, which he is never too shy to show.
8. Metallica – Dyers Eve
“Dyers Eve” is the last song from the “…And Justice for All”, the fourth studio album by American heavy metal band Metallica, released in 1988.
The legendary drummer of the band Lars Ulrich changed his drumming style over the years, and on this album, he delivered fast and aggressive thrash beats.
The way Lars utilizes the double bass technique in Latin breakbeats can be heard clearly in “Dyers Eve”, which is considered one of his best performances on drums.
9. Judas Priest – Painkiller
“Painkiller” is a song by English heavy metal band Judas Priest, released in 1990 on their twelfth studio album with the same name.
“Painkiller” was the first album featuring drummer Scott Travis who joined the band in 1990.
It is considered the band’s signature song, and it was an inspiration for a lot of bands to get faster and heavier.
“Painkiller” features a thunderous intro by Travis, and his “faster than a bullet” drumming dominates the song.
10. Lamb of God – Omerta
“Omerta” is the fifth song on the third studio album and first major-label release by American metal band Lamb of God, released in 2004.
The former drummer, and founding member of the band, Chris Adler, is known for his sharp, ferocious, and creative style that can be heard throughout the song.
Adler’s drumming always seems effortless but knife-like precise, and he is considered a huge driving force behind the band.
11. Divine Heresy – Failed Creation
“Failed Creation” is probably the most famous song from the debut album of American band Divine Heresy “Bleed the Fifth,” released in early 2007.
The former drummer of the band, Tim Yeung, earned the “Fastest Feet Title” in 2006, and the song “Failed Creation” proves just how fast and powerful he is.
Yeung is the blast beat expert, bringing the versatility, warm drum sound, and unique groove to the sound of each band he played with.
12. Death – Scavenger of Human Sorrow
“Scavenger of Human Sorrow” is the opening song of the seventh and final studio album by American death metal band Death, “The Sound of Perseverance,” released in 1998.
The master behind the drums in what’s considered Death’s most remarkable albums is Richard Christy, an American drummer, radio personality, and actor.
Before joining Death, Christy was a big fan of Schuldiner’s metal band, and when he heard they needed a new drummer, he auditioned and had his breakthrough with “The Sound of Perseverance” album.
13. Meshuggah – Bleed
“Bleed” is the legendary song from “obZen”, the sixth album by Swedish heavy metal band Meshuggah, released in 2008.
It is a standout track with lyrics written by their drummer, Tomas Haake.
Besides the lyrics, Haake is responsible for the song’s very complex drum pattern, which the drummer himself wasn’t sure if he could pull off.
Needless to say, he did it.
After 5 months of perfecting his technique and changing his whole approach to playing double bass, the song was ready to be added to the album.
14. Pantera – Becoming
“Becoming” is a second song from “Far Beyond Driven”, the seventh studio album by American metal band Pantera, released in 1994.
The drummer and co-founder of the band Vinnie Paul passed away in 2018 and will be remembered as one of the greatest metal drummers of all time.
“Becoming” is considered one of Pantera’s most powerful and bluesy songs, a “rhythmic steam roller” featuring Vinnie’s extensive series of high-speed double bass drum attacks.
15. Sepultura – Roots Bloody Roots
Sepultura’s song “Roots Bloody Roots” was released in February 1996 as the lead single from their sixth studio album “Roots”.
This simple but powerful song with outstanding tribal percussion became an anthem of metal music.
The original drummer in the song was Igor Cavalera, who left the band in 2007 and joined his brother Max in the band Cavalera Conspiracy.
He is a hard-hitting drummer who created an innovative style and brought tribal elements into the songs.
The band wanted to show a very strong image that represented where they came from and reclaim the word ‘roots’ for metal.
And they did it.
Even more, they created a monster tune that will be listened to by many generations of metalheads.
There is no complete list of top songs with heavy drums, and there is no winner.
Rock and metal music, as well as some other genres, delivered outstanding sounds of percussion, which was and stayed a backbone of the sound.
There are so many songs with heavy drums that making a brief list was almost impossible.
Many drummers left their signature in history and will always be remembered as messiahs of heavy drums.
We hope we managed to scratch the surface of this abundant treasure coffin and bring some of the gems to our list.