Success usually comes to those who are too busy to be looking for it.Henry David Thoreau

The Best Instrumental Metal Bands

The Best Instrumental Metal Bands

Instrumental metal bands are not your average heavy metal groups. Unlike traditional heavy metal music, which relies heavily on vocals and lyrics, instrumental metal bands showcase their exceptional musical talent through purely instrumental compositions. With intricate guitar riffs, thunderous drumming, and mesmerizing bass lines, these bands captivate listeners with their virtuosity and ability to convey emotions without words.

This unique genre of metal music has been steadily gaining popularity over the years, attracting a dedicated fanbase from all corners of the globe. From the atmospheric soundscapes created by post-metal bands to the technical prowess displayed by progressive metal outfits, instrumental metal offers a vast array of subgenres and styles to explore.

Whether you’re a fan of heavy metal or simply appreciate instrumental music, exploring the world of instrumental metal bands opens up a whole new realm of sonic possibilities. So, grab your headphones, immerse yourself in the intricate compositions, and let the music take you on a journey without words.

Defining Instrumental Metal

Instrumental metal, a captivating subgenre of heavy metal music, offers a unique listening experience with its predominantly instrumental compositions. With minimal to no vocals, these bands showcase their musical prowess and creativity through the power of instrumentation.

While some instrumental metal bands may occasionally incorporate vocal elements, the focus remains on the captivating melodies, intricate guitar solos, thunderous drum beats, and pulsating basslines. Drawing inspiration from a diverse range of genres such as progressive rock, classical music, jazz fusion, and more, instrumental metal pushes the boundaries of traditional heavy metal.

The technicality and complexity of instrumental metal are often awe-inspiring. These bands skillfully weave together complex time signatures, unconventional song structures, and experimental soundscapes, creating an immersive sonic journey for the listeners. Each composition becomes a musical odyssey, inviting the audience to explore uncharted territories of heavy metal.

With its fusion of various musical influences and a relentless drive to innovate, instrumental metal continues to captivate fans worldwide. It offers a stimulating and exhilarating experience for those seeking a different dimension within the realm of heavy metal music.[3]

Defining Instrumental Metal

The Appeal of Instrumental Metal Bands

Instrumental metal bands have a broad appeal, attracting fans of heavy metal music, instrumental music enthusiasts, and even those who may not typically listen to heavy metal. The lack of vocals allows the listener to focus solely on the intricate musical arrangements, making it an ideal genre for background music while studying or working.

Furthermore, the absence of lyrics also allows for a more personal interpretation of the music. Each listener can evoke their own emotions and thoughts while experiencing the intense soundscapes created by instrumental metal bands. This level of individual involvement further enhances the overall listening experience.

Instrumental metal also offers a sense of diversity within its subgenres, making it appealing to fans of various musical genres. From the heavy and aggressive sounds of djent to the atmospheric and melancholic vibes of post-metal, there’s something for everyone in the world of instrumental metal.

The technicality and complexity of instrumental metal also attract musicians and music enthusiasts who appreciate the skill and creativity required to compose such intricate pieces. It offers a platform for musicians to showcase their talent and push the boundaries of what is possible within heavy metal music.[3]

Exploring the Top Instrumental Metal Bands

Dark Matter Secret

Hailing from Russia, Dark Matter Secret is an extraordinary progressive instrumental metal band that has gained recognition for its impeccable technicality and boundary-pushing experimentation. With a mesmerizing blend of intricate jazz fusion, rich classical music influences, and the raw power of progressive metal, Dark Matter Secret takes its listeners on an enthralling sonic journey that transcends genres and defies expectations. Their compositions are meticulously crafted, seamlessly weaving together complex time signatures, virtuosic instrumental performances, and captivating melodies to create a truly immersive and mind-bending musical experience. From the thunderous rhythms to the soaring solos, Dark Matter Secret’s music is a testament to their unwavering dedication to pushing the boundaries of what is possible in the realm of instrumental metal. Prepare to be captivated and transported to new musical dimensions by the awe-inspiring talent and artistry of Dark Matter Secret.[1]

Dark Matter Secret


Hailing from the vibrant city of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Dysrhythmia emerges as a formidable force in the realm of instrumental metal music. With their roots deeply embedded in the rich musical heritage of the city, they draw inspiration from the eclectic and diverse music scene that has shaped their unique sound. This dynamic three-piece band, consisting of skilled musicians, has not only mastered their instruments but has also honed their craft to perfection.

Dysrhythmia’s music is characterized by its unparalleled technicality and intricate compositions that push the boundaries of musical complexity. Each note and rhythm is meticulously crafted, creating a captivating and immersive experience for listeners. Their mesmerizing soundscapes take the audience on a sonic journey, filled with unexpected twists and turns that keep them engaged from start to finish.

With a discography boasting six mesmerizing full-length albums, Dysrhythmia has not only garnered critical acclaim but has also solidified their status as trailblazers of the math rock subgenre within instrumental metal. Each album showcases their growth and evolution as musicians, with every release delving deeper into uncharted musical territories.

Through their extraordinary musicianship and innovative soundscapes, Dysrhythmia continues to captivate and inspire listeners worldwide. Their music resonates with those who appreciate the intricacies of instrumental metal and seek a musical experience that pushes the boundaries of what is possible. Whether it’s the technical prowess displayed in their performances or the sheer beauty of their compositions, Dysrhythmia stands as a testament to the power of instrumental music to transcend boundaries and connect with audiences on a profound level.[1]


Hailing from the vibrant city of Chicago, Pelican stands as one of the true pioneers of the instrumental post-metal genre. With their unique blend of heavy riffs, captivating melodies, and atmospheric soundscapes, the band has mastered the art of creating a sonic experience that evokes both intensity and emotional depth.

Having been active for over two decades, Pelican’s musical journey has been marked by a relentless pursuit of pushing the boundaries of instrumental metal. Their latest release, titled Nighttime Stories, showcases their continued evolution and commitment to delivering a sonic landscape that captivates listeners and takes them on a transformative musical journey.

From the explosive energy that emanates from their live performances to the intricately crafted compositions that showcase their virtuosity, Pelican has solidified their status as one of the most influential and revered acts in the metal scene. With each release, they continue to mesmerize audiences, leaving a lasting impact that resonates long after the last note fades away.[1]



Hailing from the sunny shores of California, CHON is a highly acclaimed progressive metal band that has garnered widespread recognition for their exceptional technicality and mesmerizingly melodic compositions. With their roots deeply embedded in the vibrant music scene of San Diego, CHON has emerged as a true force to be reckoned with.

Drawing inspiration from a diverse range of influences, CHON has masterfully blended math rock intricacies, jazz fusion elements, and evocative post-rock nuances into their music. This unique amalgamation of styles has allowed them to create a distinctive and captivating sound that effortlessly combines complexity with accessibility.

Listening to CHON’s music is like embarking on a sonic adventure. Their compositions take listeners on a compelling journey filled with intricately woven rhythms, lush harmonies, and unforgettable melodies that resonate deeply within the soul. Each note and every measure is thoughtfully crafted, leaving an indelible impression that lingers long after the music fades.

With their relentless pursuit of innovation and boundary-pushing artistry, CHON continues to captivate audiences worldwide. Their captivating performances showcase their virtuosity and undeniable talent, leaving fans in awe of their genre-defying approach to music.

In a world where conformity reigns supreme, CHON stands as a shining example of artistic freedom and creative expression. Through their music, they invite listeners to join them on a transformative journey, where the boundaries of genres blur and the possibilities are endless.[4]

Animals As Leaders

Formed in 2007 by the exceptionally talented guitar virtuoso Tosin Abasi, Animals As Leaders has emerged as a groundbreaking and influential force in the realm of progressive metal music. From the very beginning, this band has fearlessly pushed the boundaries of instrumental music, captivating audiences with their mesmerizing compositions. With an unrivaled blend of technicality, groove, and melodic sensibility, Animals As Leaders has garnered immense acclaim for their mind-boggling musicianship and their ability to craft intricate yet accessible songs.

Drawing inspiration from a diverse range of genres, including jazz, funk, and electronic music, Animals As Leaders has developed a distinctive and dynamic sound that defies categorization. Their fusion of heavy metal with these unexpected elements results in a sonic experience that is both captivating and original. From their groundbreaking self-titled debut album to their latest release “The Madness of Many,” Animals As Leaders continues to mesmerize listeners with their innovative approach to instrumental metal.

With each new release, Animals As Leaders takes their audience on a journey through intricate melodies, complex rhythms, and breathtaking solos. Their music is a testament to the boundless possibilities of instrumental expression, as they effortlessly navigate through a vast sonic landscape, evoking various emotions and pushing the limits of what can be achieved without lyrics.

Through their unparalleled talent and dedication to their craft, Animals As Leaders has carved out a unique place in the music industry, inspiring countless musicians and leaving an indelible mark on the world of instrumental metal. As they continue to evolve and captivate listeners, it is evident that their artistic journey is far from over. With each new composition, Animals As Leaders invites us to explore uncharted territories, challenging our perceptions of what is possible in the realm of instrumental music.[4]

Animals As Leaders

Scale The Summit

Since their formation in 2004, Scale The Summit has been a driving force in instrumental progressive metal. With their intricate compositions, soaring melodies, and technical prowess, this band continues to captivate fans worldwide. Their music is a fusion of various musical influences, including jazz fusion, post-rock, and progressive rock, creating a sound that is uniquely their own.

Scale The Summit’s music is characterized by its rich and dynamic instrumentation, with each member bringing their unique style and talent to the table. From the intricate drum patterns to the soaring guitar melodies, every element of their music works in perfect harmony, creating a sonic experience that is both powerful and emotive.

With each new release, Scale The Summit continues to push boundaries and explore new musical territories, solidifying their place as one of the top instrumental metal bands in the industry. Their dedication to their craft and relentless pursuit of musical excellence makes them a must-listen for any fan of heavy metal or instrumental music.[4]


Formed in 2010, Polyphia is a Texas-based instrumental metal band that has made waves in the music industry with their unique blend of progressive metal and hip-hop influences. With their captivating compositions, technical prowess, and infectious energy, this band has garnered a dedicated fanbase and critical acclaim.

Polyphia’s music is characterized by its intricate guitar work, dynamic rhythms, and melodic sensibility. Their ability to seamlessly blend elements from various genres results in a sound that is truly unique and instantly recognizable. From their early beginnings as a metalcore band to their current status as one of the most innovative instrumental metal acts in the industry, Polyphia continues to push boundaries and redefine what it means to be an instrumental metal band.

Through their music, Polyphia invites listeners on a journey through complex melodies, infectious grooves, and unexpected twists and turns. Their high-energy live performances and infectious charisma have also contributed to their success, making them one of the most exciting bands to watch in the instrumental metal scene.[4]


Musical Styles and Influences

The Diversity of Instrumental Metal  Music

One of the most fascinating aspects of instrumental metal is its incredibly diverse range of musical styles and influences. Without the constraints of vocals, instrumental metal bands have the artistic freedom to explore and experiment with various genres, seamlessly incorporating different elements into their music. This creative liberty has given rise to a vibrant and ever-evolving scene, where each band brings their own distinct style and interpretation to the genre.

From the intricate complexities of jazz fusion to the pulsating beats of electronic music, from the ethereal landscapes of post-rock to the grandeur of classical compositions, instrumental metal draws inspiration from a wide spectrum of musical styles. It skillfully weaves together these diverse influences, resulting in compositions that transcend traditional boundaries. This rich diversity makes it challenging to pinpoint a specific sound or style for instrumental metal, as each band adds something new and exciting to the genre, pushing its boundaries and redefining its possibilities.

The dynamic nature of instrumental metal, constantly evolving and pushing the envelope, ensures that there is always something fresh and captivating for listeners to discover. Whether it’s the intricate guitar melodies, thunderous drumming, or the haunting melodies of the keyboard, instrumental metal offers a captivating and immersive musical experience like no other. So, immerse yourself in the symphony of sound, let the music transport you to new realms, and explore the boundless creativity of instrumental metal.[2]

Notable Influences on the Genre

While instrumental metal draws inspiration from a vast array of musical styles, there are some notable artists and bands that have had a significant influence on the genre’s development. These include legendary progressive rock/metal acts like Dream Theater, Opeth, and Rush, whose complex compositions and technical prowess have inspired many instrumental metal bands.

The fusion of jazz elements with heavy metal can be traced back to bands like Cynic and Atheist, who incorporated jazz fusion into their sound in the late 80s and early 90s. These bands laid the foundation for the development of instrumental metal’s sub-genre – jazz metal.

The use of electronic elements and sampling in instrumental metal can be attributed to bands like Meshuggah and Fear Factory, who experimented with incorporating industrial and electronic elements into their metal sound. This fusion of heavy metal with electronic music has become a defining characteristic of many modern instrumental metal bands.

Furthermore, the influence of classical music on instrumental metal cannot be overlooked. Bands like Apocalyptica, who gained success by reinterpreting classic heavy metal songs using cellos, have paved the way for other instrumental metal acts to incorporate classical elements into their compositions.

The diverse range of influences and inspirations on the genre has played a crucial role in shaping instrumental metal into the dynamic and versatile genre it is today. Without these pioneers, the genre would not have evolved and expanded into the diverse landscape it is now.[2]

Notable Influences on the Genre

Subgenres Within Instrumental Metal

As the genre has evolved and grown, it has given rise to various sub-genres within instrumental metal. These include progressive metal, post-metal, jazz metal, electronic metal, and many more. Each of these sub-genres brings its own unique blend of influences and styles to the table, adding depth and diversity to instrumental metal.

Progressive metal is perhaps one of the most prominent sub-genres within instrumental metal. It is characterized by complex song structures, technical proficiency, and a high level of musicianship. Bands like Animals as Leaders, Between the Buried and Me, and Scale the Summit are some notable names in this sub-genre.

Post-metal takes a more atmospheric approach to instrumental metal, incorporating elements from post-rock and shoegaze. Bands like Russian Circles and Pelican are renowned for their immersive and introspective soundscapes.

Jazz metal, as the name suggests, combines elements from jazz with heavy metal. This sub-genre is known for its complex time signatures, virtuosic solos, and unpredictable song structures. Bands such as Exivious and T.R.A.M are leading names in this sub-genre.

Electronic metal, a relatively new sub-genre within instrumental metal, takes inspiration from electronic music and incorporates it into the heavy metal sound. Bands like The Algorithm and Rings of Saturn are known for their unique blend of electronic elements with brutal metal riffs.[2]


What is the most aggressive metal band?

When it comes to aggressive metal bands, there is no shortage of options to choose from. Among the notable names that come to mind are Meshuggah, known for their complex and polyrhythmic style, Cannibal Corpse, renowned for their explicit and gruesome lyrics, and Behemoth, whose music combines elements of blackened death metal with dark and occult themes. These bands have carved a niche for themselves in the metal scene with their intense and brutal sound, attracting a dedicated fanbase of avid listeners who appreciate the raw power and aggression of their music. Whether you’re a fan of heavy guitar riffs, thunderous drums, or guttural vocals, these bands are sure to deliver an adrenaline-pumping experience that will leave you craving for more.

Which instruments are used in heavy metal?

The most common instruments used in heavy metal are the powerful and electrifying electric guitar, the rumbling and thunderous bass guitar, the relentless and pounding drums, and the raw and intense vocals. However, what sets instrumental metal bands apart is their ability to push boundaries and experiment with unconventional soundscapes. They often incorporate the haunting melodies of keyboards, the soaring and emotive sound of violins, the rich and resonant tones of cellos, and even other unique and unexpected instruments. These additions create a diverse and captivating musical experience that takes the listener on an unforgettable journey through the realms of heavy metal.

Is heavy metal still popular?

Yes, heavy metal is still a popular genre, with a loyal fan base around the world. While it may not receive as much mainstream attention as other genres, there are numerous active bands and festivals dedicated to heavy metal music.

Is heavy metal still popular?

Why do people like metal?

People like metal for various reasons, such as the fast-paced and energetic music, powerful vocals, and heavy riffs. For many, it provides an outlet for expressing emotions and connecting with like-minded individuals. Overall, metal is a genre that inspires passion and connects people through its raw energy and emotional intensity.

What personality listens to metal?

There is no one specific personality type that listens to metal. Metal fans come from diverse backgrounds and have varying personalities. However, they all share a love for the music and its unique characteristics, making them a united community of metalheads. So, whether you’re introverted or extroverted, analytical or creative, there’s a place for you in the world of instrumental metal music.

Why are metalheads so loyal?

Metalheads are known for their loyalty to the genre and its bands, often forming close-knit communities centered around their shared love for metal. This loyalty can be attributed to the passion and energy that metal music evokes in listeners, making it more than just a genre of music but a way of life for many fans.

Which MBTI listens to metal?

The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) is not a determining factor when it comes to one’s music preferences. It is important to note that metal fans come from all walks of life and cannot be generalized solely based on their personality types as defined by MBTI. The love for metal is incredibly diverse, and individuals from any MBTI type can find a deep connection to the genre. Whether it’s the raw energy, the intricate guitar solos, or the powerful lyrics, metal has a way of resonating with people from various backgrounds and personalities. So, let’s celebrate the inclusivity of metal music and embrace the fact that it speaks to the hearts of music lovers across different MBTI types.

Which MBTI likes metal music?

Similar to the previous question, it’s important to note that there is no one specific MBTI type that has a preference for metal music. Metal fans encompass a wide range of personality types and cannot be easily categorized based on their MBTI type alone. The beauty of the metal genre lies in its diversity and the multitude of influences it draws from, which in turn attracts individuals from various backgrounds and walks of life. This inclusivity creates a warm and welcoming community that embraces and celebrates the unique perspectives and experiences of all its members. So, regardless of your MBTI type, metal music offers a space where everyone can find solace, expression, and a sense of belonging.

Useful Video: Hard rock music instrumental megamix 2023


In conclusion, instrumental metal is a vibrant and ever-evolving genre that continues to push boundaries and challenge norms. From its roots in heavy metal to incorporating elements from various genres like electronic music, classical, and jazz, it has become a melting pot of influences and styles. This diversity has given rise to sub-genres within instrumental metal, each with its own unique characteristics and dedicated fan base. Metal music may not be for everyone, but for those who connect with it, it is more than just a genre of music – it’s a way of life. So whether you’re into progressive metal or post-metal, jazz metal or electronic metal, there’s something for everyone in the world of instrumental metal. Keep exploring and discovering new bands and sub-genres, and never stop rocking on!

  1. https://www.altpress.com/best-instrumental-rock-bands/
  2. https://www.revolvermag.com/music/fan-poll-5-best-instrumental-metal-songs
  3. https://www.thetoptens.com/metal/instrumental-metal-bands/
  4. https://spinditty.com/genres/5-Incredible-Instrumental-Metal-Albums