While hanging out at home and listening to music on your record player can be incredibly chill, the live experience is one of the most profound ways to experience heavy metal.
2023 has already been stacked with an amazing plethora of metal tours and festivals, and there are even more awesome metal concerts to come. But with so many bands on the road at once, who are the acts you should be keeping a look out for? Who are those bands that, time and time again, are going to deliver amazing and exhilarating live performances?
Considering the bands actively touring these days, here are the 10 greatest live metal bands who are doing it today.
Watching Meshuggah live is a psychedelic heavy experience; in the right setting, with all the lasers and lights going off that the band has to offer, the band’s live performances provide a surreal quality. You combine those visuals with the all-out crushing presentation that Meshuggah present through their music, and you have yourself one hell of a captivating experience.
Hardcore shows are already wild, but when you bring a hardcore mentality into death metal… well, that’s just pure chaos. It’s that sort of combination that makes seeing Undeath live so exciting; along with the instrumental side of the band delivering pulse-pounding death metal, you got frontman Alexander Jones stirring the crowd up to go absolutely apeshit. There’s no standing still at an Undeath show – you’re either headbanging nonstop or diving into the pit.
The abrasive sludge metal of Eyehategod makes for a concert experience oozing with feeling. From Mike Williams’ razor-sharp screams to the band’s cough syrup-like rhythms, Eyehategod crafts an atmosphere that comes across as sickly, but also undeniably groovy. If you aren’t throwing down in the pit, you’ll find yourself in a unique meditative trance of grossly captivating sludge.
When it comes to theatrical presentation, Rammstein is one of the best in the game. From flamethrowers to exotic-looking machinery that the band brings on stage with them, a Rammstein concert is one hell of an experience. On top of that, you’ll be dancing your ass off thanks to the band’s catchy take on industrial metal.
Or perhaps you don’t want to dance – perhaps you’re more in the mood to brawl or jump off a stage two or 15 times. If the latter sounds like your speed, then you need to go see Jesus Piece. This Philadphlia metallic hardcore act is one of the most aggressive bands performing today, and very few bands can match the type of extremity that Jesus Piece bring to a show.
What makes Lamb of God so awesome to see live is how they bring the energy of old-school punk to heavy metal. When you watch Randy Blythe and the rest of the band perform, it’s almost like watching a modern-day take on Henry Rollins Black Flag, or even the Bad Brains.
As one of the most important bands in metallic hardcore history, Converge makes for one of the most exhilarating bands to see live. After all the years they have been performing, frontman Jacob Bannon and the rest of the band continue to bring forth intoxicating adrenaline to each of their shows. Converge concerts are nothing short of pure chaos in the best way possible.
Oh, what a shocker that one of the greatest thrash metal bands of all time just so happens to be one of the best bands to see live. In all seriousness though, seeing Metallica in person is one hell of a spectacle. As one of the biggest bands in music, you owe it to yourself to experience the thrill that is watching Metallica perform live.
When it comes to theatrical experiences, Rob Zombie is another act you have to check out. Whether you’re a metalhead, a horror movie buff, or both, Zombie is a must-see experience. There are few acts that have such a unique and exciting stage presentation as Zombie’s. When you see Zombie live, you’re getting much more than just a “concert” – you are getting a super immersive live experience.
You’ve probably noticed a running theme of sorts on this list, that being how hardcore bands are amazing to see live. While the band has gone on to incorporate more electronics and industrial music into their material, Code Orange continue to deliver aggressive hardcore madness with each of their performances.