The 30 Greatest Metal Hammer Front Covers Of The Last 30 Years

Metal Hammer’s classic Slipknot Assemble cover
Metal Hammer\u2019s classic Slipknot Assemble cover

Next month, Metal Hammer turns 30 years old – and our birthday celebrations are well underway. To mark this momentous occasion, we’ll be looking back over the last 30 years in metal – the legendary icons, the classic albums, the epic gigs, the most memorable milestones. Let’s face it, the last 30 years have been nothing if not eventful.

We’ve already looked at the greatest debut albums released during Metal Hammer’s lifetime, and we’re continuing our celebrations with the 30 greatest Metal Hammer covers since the magazine launched. Since ZZ Top’s Billy Gibbons appeared on the front of the very first issue, we’ve lost count of the number of bands we’ve put on the cover.

Some of our cover stars, like Metallica, Iron Maiden and Black Sabbath were doing their thing long before we appeared on the scene. Others, such as Korn, Linkin Park, HIM, Slipknot and Avenged Sevenfold, became huge stars after appearing on the cover of the magazine. And then there are those long-forgotten bands lost to the mists of time – say hello Pitchshifter, Amen, Adema and more.

But we’ve decided to boil it down to just 30 covers. And these are the absolutely classics – the perfect marriage of superstar bands, jaw-dropping imagery and sheer visual impact. We hope you enjoy looking at them just as much as we enjoyed creating them.

Scroll through our gallery of the 30 Greatest Metal Hammer Covers – and then vote for your favourite below.

Image 1 of 30

Marilyn Manson (September 1997)

Image 2 of 30

Linkin Park (May 2001)

Image 3 of 30

Ozzy Osbourne (November 2001)

Image 4 of 30

Cradle Of Filth (Issue 111, March 2003)

Image 5 of 30

Avenged Sevenfold (Issue 146, December 2005)

Image 6 of 30

Lacuna Coil (Issue 151, April 2006)

Image 7 of 30

Dimebag Darrell (Issue 174, January 2008)

Image 8 of 30

Slayer (Issue 199, December 2009)

Image 9 of 30

HIM (Issue 202, March 2010)

Image 10 of 30

Rob Zombie (Issue 213, January 2011)

Image 11 of 30

Bring Me The Horizon (Issue 216, April 2011)

Image 12 of 30

Metallica (Issue 217, May 2011)

Image 13 of 30

Trivium (Issue 221, Summer 2011)

Image 14 of 30

Machine Head (Issue 222, September 2011)

Image 15 of 30

Cliff Burton (Issue 224, November 2011)

Image 16 of 30

Corey Taylor (Issue 228, May 2012)

Image 17 of 30

Golden Gods (Issue 233, August 2012)

Image 18 of 30

Watain (Issue 234, Summer 2012)

Image 19 of 30

Slipknot (Issue 245, July 2013)

Image 20 of 30

Korn (Issue 248, September 2013)

Image 21 of 30

Star Wars (Issue 253, February 2014)

Image 22 of 30

Steel Panther (Issue 256, May 2014)

Image 23 of 30

Mastodon (Issue 257, June 2014)

Image 24 of 30

AC/DC (Issue 261, September 2014)

Image 25 of 30

Five Finger Death Punch (Issue 272, August 2015)

Image 26 of 30

Iron Maiden (Issue 274, September 2015)

Image 27 of 30

Parkway Drive (Issue 275, October 2015)

Image 28 of 30

Nightwish (Issue 278, January 2016)

Image 29 of 30

Lemmy (Issue 280, March 2016)

Image 30 of 30

Babymetal (Issue 281, April 2016)