In the spring of 2018, MetalSucks compiled a list of The 50 Most Popular Metal Bands Right Now, According to the Internet.
But as you’re well aware, a LOT can happen in two years. So we’ve decided to update that list for 2020! The updated rankings are below.
How did we compile this list? So glad you asked. We looked at the top 5,000 MetalSucks articles to receive traffic between June 1, 2018 and September 30, 2020 and calculated the total number of pageviews for each post in which the name of the band was contained in the headline. We then added all those pageviews together to come up with a total number for each band. These numbers include headlines that feature a key member of the band — so, for example, any headline with the name “Dave Mustaine” in it was counted towards Megadeth. Any headline which contained the name of the band and the name of a prominent member of that band — e.g., “Megadeth’s Dave Mustaine” — was only counted once.
The numbers were culled from Google Analytics, then sorted and quantified in Excel.
This should go without saying, but we’ll say it anyway to be safe: our methodology is imperfect. For one thing, the list is based purely on total pageview numbers, and is not weighted for post frequency. In other words, it is possible that a band garnered a higher total number of pageviews than another band simply because they were in the news more often (so bands that actually released new music or toured a lot during this period were at an advantage… although some bands are clearly just VERY popular pretty much no matter what). Sometimes, this news cycle-dictated bias affected the overall numbers dramatically. For instance, one single very popular article — a death or major scandal, for example — could skew a band’s ranking tremendously. If we’d stopped tallying pageviews just a month earlier, on August 31, 2020, Fear Factory would have been much further down the list; similarly, if we’d taken pageviews from the month of October thus far into account, Van Halen would be considerably higher.
We are also aware popularity on the Internet is not the ultimate indicator of quality. On the contrary, some of the bands featured here almost surely made the cut because people love to hate them (or at least love to read us hating on them).
Still, there’s no denying that a band or artist whose very name alone automatically piques interest certainly wields power. This being the case, we believe this list is quite telling.