Your essential guide to the Golden Gods Best Live Band category

Parkway Drive, Anthrax, Nightwish, Bring Me The Horizon, Lamb Of God
Clockwise from top left: Parkway Drive, Anthrax, Nightwish, Bring Me The Horizon, Lamb Of God

It’s in the live environment, out on the stage, that you really earn your stripes in our world. Sure, we appreciate great albums, songs, and musicianship, but if you’re going to make it in the world of heavy metal then you’d best be able to get up in front of people and prove your worth. These bands do. Every night.


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A decade after the return of Joey Belladonna, and the Anthrax live juggernaut keeps rolling on. With endless, boundless energy, a heady dose of fun and, of course, with a back catalogue featuring some of the finest thrash metal classics tucked in their back pocket, how could an Anthrax live show be anything other than stellar?

Bring Me The Horizon

They’re one of the biggest bands in the world now, and live BMTH are out to show they belong in the company they now keep. Shows at Wembley, Alexandra Palace, The Royal Albert Hall and an upcoming run at the O2 are impressive stats – but the feeling of being in the middle of their dazzling, sensory overload shows is why they are really on this list.

Lamb Of God

Lamb Of God haven’t achieved a reputation as the heirs to Pantera’s throne by phoning it in live. Every second of every song in every LOG set is fuelled by the passion, grit and remarkable power that has made them one of the most loved bands in metal. There are more showy and spectacular bands on this list, but there are none more intense.


It’s been an incredible couple of years for Nightwish. They have cemented their place at the top table of bands in the UK over the last twelve months with a subheading slot at Download festival and, most impressive of all, a spine-tingling, bombastic evening of triumph as they took Wembley arena by storm in December.

Parkway Drive

They’ve been the band to beat for some time now, but, as anyone who saw them on their recent run promoting Ire will attest, Parkway Drive have raised the bar once again. Savage beatdowns, swirling circle pits butting heads with confetti cannons and firebombs? Should it work? Well, trust us, it does.

Vote for who you want to win Best Live Band at the Metal Hammer Golden Gods, in association with Fireball and PRG, to be in with a chance of winning tickets to the ceremony.

Tickets are available to buy now for £6.66 at the Eventim website. TeamRock and Eventim will donate all profits from ticket sales to the charity Heavy Metal Truants, an annual charity cycle ride sponsored by TeamRock from London to Download Festival to benefit Nordoff Robbins, Teenage Cancer Trust and Childline.

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Stephen Hill

Since blagging his way onto the Hammer team a decade ago, Stephen has written countless features and reviews for the magazine, usually specialising in punk, hardcore and 90s metal, and still holds out the faint hope of one day getting his beloved U2 into the pages of the mag. He also regularly spouts his opinions on the Metal Hammer Podcast.