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Top 10 Influential Nu Metal Bands

VO: Matt Campbell
Script Written by Brandon Stuhr. Are you a metal fan? Are you looking for something nu to listen to? Look no further. Join WatchMojo.com as we count down our picks for Top 10 Nu Metal Bands. For this list, we considered any band that is primarily classified as nu metal. That means any band that hasn’t consistently explored the nu metal sound, like Disturbed, will unfortunately be left off the list. These may not be the best, but they represent just how far the metal genre has come. Special thanks to our users Rowan Murtagh, shawn haze, Ben Woodard, aricappenzeller, Ian Nation, gemma moolman and Pres Landaverde for submitting the idea on our Suggestion Tool at WatchMojo.comsuggest
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Top 10 Influential Nu Metal Bands


Are you a metal fan? Are you looking for something nu to listen to? Look no further. Welcome to WatchMojo.com, and today we are counting down our picks for Top 10 Nu Metal Bands.

For this list, we considered any band that is primarily classified as nu metal. That means any band that hasn’t consistently explored the nu metal sound, like Disturbed, will unfortunately be left off the list. These may not be the best, but they represent just how far the metal genre has come.

#10: Drowning Pool (1996-)

We start our list off by letting the bodies hit the floor. Founded in Texas in 1996, Drowning Pool quickly rose to stardom in 2001 with their platinum album Sinner.Sinner became the perfect representation of the band’s style at the time, which can be considered a blend of hard rock and alternative metal. Over the years the band has had a revolving cast of vocalists, with each one only staying for an album or two. Despite the constant lineup changes, the band has maintained a consistent level of quality.

#9: Trapt (1995-)

Are you headstrong? We didn’t think so. Our first but not last California-based nu metal band, Trapt burst onto the scene with their first official single “Headstrong” off their self-titled album. The song showcased Trapt’s twist on the nu metal genre, being considered one of the best hard rock songs of the 2000s. A driving force in the popularity of nu metal in the early 2000s, Trapt shows fans just how expansive the genre really is.

#8: Evanescence (1995-2012)

Formed in Arkansas, Evanescene's introduction into the nu metal genre was with their monumentally successful debut album Fallen. That album alone sold over 17 million copies, showing just how popular the band became in such a short amount of time. Featuring the theatrical vocals of Amy Lee, Evanescence created some of the best numetal out there, being described as purely “gothic”. While Evanescence has been compared to nu metal acts such as Linkin Park and P.O.D., the band has created a style of their own which has left a legacy for future nu metal bands to follow.

#7: P.O.D. (1992-)

Point of delivery? No, not metal enough. Payable on Death is more like it. Founded in 1992 in Southern California, this Christian rock band has had an ever changing style over the years. Originating in rap metal, they slowly transitioned to the reggae influenced nu metal style they are most known for. Most prevalent on the band’s fourth album Satellite, listeners welcomed the transition with open arms as it quickly became P.O.D.’s best-selling album. With twelve million record sales and three Grammy nods later, it’s no wonder why they’re considered one of the best nu metalacts out there!

#6: Papa Roach (1993-)

This could be our last resort. Forming in the early 90s in Vacaville, CA, Papa Roach didn’t gain mainstream success until their sophomore album Infest. The album introduced listeners to the band’s original aggressive rapping and hard rocking style through tracks like “Last Resort” and “Between Angels and Insects”. Although Papa Roach has changed their sound quite a bit over the years, it is the rap metal sound that they are most associated with, which helped in selling over 20 million records worldwide.

#5: Deftones (1988-)

The oldest entry on our list, California experimental rock band Deftones are a prime example of clashing genres. Gaining influence from rap and psychedelic rock to even the electronic genre trip hop, there is simply no way to classify the band’s style. While they were considered nu metal until the release of their third album White Pony, many now believe that they have moved past that label to something entirely new. A career spanning more than twenty years and seven albums, now is no time to slow down.

#4: Linkin Park (1996-)

The place where nu metal meets the mainstream is where you will find our next entry. Another California band, Linkin Park swiftly rose to fame on an international scale with their first album Hybrid Theory. Along with their second album Meteora, the band blended nu and rap metal to make a more radio-friendly tone. While you can say they have gone an arguably different direction with some of their latest work, 60 million record sales underneath their belt show that this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Although “in the end”, we just hope these guys return to their roots.

#3: Slipknot (1995-)

Who are behind the masks? Some badass nu metal rock stars that’s who. Hailing from the great state of Iowa, this seven member group, yes you heard that right, seven, have become synonymous with the masks they hide behind. Known for their aggressive musical style and chaotic live shows, the band has earned themselves countless Grammy noms and has sold out the world’s largest venues. While they are classified as nu metal, the band has distanced themselves from the genre, describing their sound simply as “metal metal”. How metal.

#2: Limp Bizkit (1994-2006, 2009-)

There’s no way we could have forgotten the Bizkit. These Jacksonville, Florida rockers made a name for themselves and quickly became a must listen in the nu metal genre. Whether it be vocalist Fred Durst’s angry and rhythmic lyrics or their elaborate stage shows with their use of uniforms and face paint, there are plenty of reasons to love them. They must have the nu metal formula down pat, as it has nabbed them three Grammy nods and over 50 million records sold worldwide. Despite not being quite as popular as they used to be, the legacy these boys left will just keep “rollin’”.

Before we rock out to our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions.

Skindred (1998-)

Sevendust (1994-)

Staind (1995-)

Soulfly (1997-)

Stactic-X (1994-2010, 2012-2013)

#1: Korn (1993-)

Many fans consider Korn the pioneers of nu metal, and there’s no denying that they are “Here to Stay”. Korn gained recognition by stretching out the metal genre and warping it into something their own. They owe much of their success to the incorporation of non-traditional elements on early works like “Freak on a Leash” as well as later works like their collaboration with dubstep artists Skrillex and Kill the Noise. Whatever they’re doing, they’re doing it right as Korn has been nominated for seven Grammys, winning two, and has received multiple MTV Video Music Awards.

Do you agree with our list? What are your favorite nu metal bands? For more thrashing top tens published every day, be sure to subscribe to WatchMojo.com.
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