The 20 Best Rock Bands Of The 2000s

The 2000s saw the rise of some of the best rock bands in history. From classic rockers like Foo Fighters to new wave acts like The White Stripes, the decade was full of incredible music. Whether you were a fan of punk rock or classic rock, there was something for everyone in the 2000s.

These bands represent a variety of sounds, from alternative rock to metal to indie rock, and each one has their own unique style that made them stand out from the rest. Here are 20 of the best rock bands of the 2000s.

1. My Chemical Romance

Starting this list strong is one of the most popular bands of the early 2000s, My Chemical Romance. They broke onto the scene in 2002 with their debut album “I Brought You My Bullets, You Brought Me Your Love”, and they quickly amassed a devoted following.

Their 2006 album “The Black Parade” is considered one of the best rock albums of the decade, and it propelled them to superstardom. It topped the UK Charts and went platinum in the US. The album’s lead single, “Welcome to the Black Parade,” is one of the most iconic rock songs of the 2000s.

2. The White Stripes

The White Stripes were also one of the most popular bands of the early 2000s, thanks to their unique blend of garage rock and blues. The duo, made up of Jack and Meg White, released their self-titled debut album in 1999, but it was their 2001 album “White Blood Cells” that really put them on the map.

The album was a critical and commercial success, and it included the hit singles “Little Room” and “I Can’t Wait.” The White Stripes continued to release great music throughout the decade, including their acclaimed album “Icky Thump” in 2007. And who can forget their iconic “Seven Nation Army” which includes one of the best basslines of all time?

3. Paramore

Formed in 2004, Paramore is a rock band from Franklin, Tennessee, United States. The group released their debut album “All We Know Is Falling” in 2005, with the album’s single “Pressure” becoming a moderate hit on alternative rock radio.

Paramore’s breakthrough came in 2007 with the release of their second album, “Riot!”, which was certified Platinum in the United States. The album was powered by the success of its lead single “Misery Business”, which peaked at number 26 on the Billboard Hot 100, making it their breakthrough single.

4. Linkin Park

Another rock band that made waves in the early 2000s was Linkin Park. Formed in 1996, the band rose to fame with their debut album “Hybrid Theory”, which was certified Diamond by the RIAA. The album spawned several hit singles, including “In the End”, “Crawling”, and “One Step Closer”.

Your emo phase back in high school wouldn’t have been complete without listening to Linkin Park. The band continued their success in the following years with albums like “Meteora”, “Minutes to Midnight”, and “A Thousand Suns”.

5. Foo Fighters

Formed in 1994, the band is fronted by Dave Grohl, who is best known as the drummer of Nirvana. The band’s self-titled debut album was released in the 90s and was met with positive reviews.

They made a comeback in the 2000s with their fourth album, “One by One”. The album’s first single “All My Life” became a huge hit, peaking at number 5 on the UK Charts. The band has since released several more albums and continues to tour around the world.

6. 3 Doors Down

3 Doors Down is a rock band from Escatawpa, Mississippi that formed in 1996. The band rose to fame with their first single, “Kryptonite”, which peaked at number 3 on the Billboard Hot 100. They followed up their success with the release of their debut album, “The Better Life”, which was certified 6x Platinum in the US.

The band has released a total of six albums and has sold over 30 million records worldwide, earning their place as one of the best-selling bands of the 2000s. They also made sure to give back and started a foundation named after their debut album to help support as many kids to experience a better life.

7. Avenged Sevenfold

Avenged Sevenfold is a heavy metal band from Huntington Beach, California that was formed in 1999. The band’s debut album, “Sounding the Seventh Trumpet”, was released in 2001 and features the singles “Darkness Surrounding” and “Warmness on the Soul”. The album was well-received by critics and helped the band gain a following.

The band made a big splash in the metal community with their second album, “Waking the Fallen”. The band’s single, “Unholy Confessions”, helped them reach mainstream success, making it their highest charting single to date. Their place among the best rock bands of the 2000s is undeniable.

8. Red Hot Chili Peppers

Who doesn’t know the Red Hot Chili Peppers? The band was formed in 1983 and rose to fame with their funky blend of punk rock and rap. Their first hit album was “Californication” which was released in 1999. The album included the singles “Scar Tissue” and “Californication”, which were both huge hits.

The band’s next album, “By the Way”, was released in 2002 and featured the singles “By the Way” and “Can’t Stop”. The album was a departure from their previous sound. The band’s popularity continued to grow in the early 2000s with the release of their eighth studio album, “By the Way”, which peaked at number two on the Billboard 200.

9. Radiohead

Radiohead is an English rock band from Abingdon, Oxfordshire that was formed in 1985. Although the band started getting mainstream attention in the early 90s with their hit single “Creep”, their “Kid A” album made them international superstars. The album was released in 2000 and topped the UK Charts.

The band’s popularity only continued to grow with the release of more singles and albums. Their success has made them one of the most popular rock bands of the 2000s. They have won numerous awards, including multiple Grammy Awards and Brit Awards.

10. Incubus

The popular song “Wish You Were Here” really put Incubus on the map in the early 2000s. They were able to stay relevant throughout the decade with a mix of alternative rock, metal, and funk. Brandon Boyd’s unique voice and Mike Einziger’s guitar work helped them stand out from other bands at that time.

With over 13 million albums sold worldwide, there’s no doubt that Incubus was one of the biggest rock bands of the 2000s. Their tracks can still be heard on radio stations today and can be streamed on digital music platforms as well.

11. Korn

Nu metal group Korn was one of the most successful rock bands of the early 2000s. They were able to translate their success from the late 90s into the new millennium with hit albums like “Untouchables” and “Take A Look In The Mirror.” Jonathan Davis’ unique growling vocals set them apart from other bands in the genre.

Despite some lineup changes, Korn has continued to make music and tour throughout the world. They’ve sold over 40 million albums worldwide and show no signs of slowing down anytime soon.

12. Evanescence

The iconic rock band Evanescence rose to fame in the early 2000s with their debut album “Fallen.” The album featured the hit single “Bring Me To Life” which helped them break into the mainstream. Lead singer Amy Lee’s powerful voice and Ben Moody’s guitar work made them stand out from other bands of the time.

Evanescence continued to release successful albums throughout the decade and has sold over 25 million albums worldwide. Their tracks are still widely played on rock radio stations and they continue to tour regularly.

13. Green Day

Green Day’s songs just give you that classic rock ‘n’ roll feeling. They rose to fame in the early 90s but reached new heights in the 2000s with their album “American Idiot.” The album was a critical and commercial success, selling over 6 million copies worldwide. It also won them a Grammy for Best Rock Album.

Green Day has continued to make music and tour throughout the world. They’ve sold over 75 million albums worldwide and created some of the most iconic rock songs of the past few decades. They are, without a doubt, one of the best Pop-Punk bands of all time.

14. Matchbox Twenty

Matchbox Twenty was also one of the biggest pop rock bands of the 2000s. They rose to fame with their debut album “Yourself or Someone Like You” which featured the hit singles “Real World” and “3 A.M.” The band continued to release successful albums throughout the decade, selling over 40 million albums worldwide.

Despite going on hiatus in the late 2000s, Matchbox Twenty has since reunited and continues to work on new tracks. They are still one of the most beloved pop rock bands of the past two decades.

15. Kings Of Leon

Kings of Leon became one of the most popular rock bands of the 2000s with their unique Southern rock sound. They released their debut album “Youth & Young Manhood” in 2003, which featured the hit singles “Molly’s Chambers” and “Red Morning Light.”

The band’s popularity continued to grow with each subsequent album release, culminating in their 2008 album “Only by the Night” which featured the massive hit single “Sex on Fire.”

Kings of Leon have continued to release successful albums and tour the world to sold-out crowds. They are one of the most popular rock bands in the world and there’s no doubt about that.

16. Disturbed

With tracks like “Down with the Sickness” and “Stricken,” it’s no surprise that Disturbed made it to this list. The band released their debut album “The Sickness” in 2000, which quickly propelled them to stardom. They have an iconic sound that is instantly recognizable, and they have continued to churn out hit albums and singles throughout the years.

Disturbed has had a successful career spanning over two decades. Their mascot, “The Guy”, is one of the most recognizable figures in heavy metal music. They are a force to be reckoned with and one of the best rock bands of the 2000s.

17. Muse

Muse is a British rock band that rose to prominence in the early 2000s with their unique brand of alternative rock. Their debut album “Showbiz” featured the hit singles “Muscle Museum” and “Unintended.” The band’s popularity continued to grow with each subsequent album release, culminating in their 2006 album “Black Holes and Revelations” which featured the hit single “Supermassive Black Hole.”

Muse has won multiple Grammy Awards and they are one of the most successful rock bands of the past two decades. They are known for their explosive live shows and their unique brand of music.

18. Snow Patrol

Next on the list is Snow Patrol. They hail from Northern Ireland and were formed in 1994. Snow Patrol rose to prominence in the early 2000s as part of the post-Britpop movement.

They achieved mainstream success with their 2006 album “Eyes Open”, which won them a Grammy Award for Best Rock Album, and produced the hit singles “Chasing Cars” and “Signs.” The band has released seven studio albums to date, and during their career, Snow Patrol has sold over 10 million records worldwide.

19. System of A Down

If you’re a fan of metal, then you’re probably already familiar with System of A Down. They formed in 1994 in Glendale, California. The band is known for their unique blend of metal, alternative rock, and Armenian folk music.

System of A Down has released five studio albums, where three of these landed the top spot on the Billboard 200. You can’t talk about this band without mentioning their political views, as most of their songs contain socio-political commentary.

20. Porcupine Tree

Wrapping up the list is Porcupine Tree. They’re an English progressive rock band that was formed in 1987 by Steven Wilson. The group has seen many lineup changes over the years, but Wilson is a constant member.

Porcupine Tree achieved mainstream success when they embarked on a new musical direction with their 2002 album “In Absentia”. The album was a critical and commercial success, and it helped them gain a wider audience. Since then, the band has released more studio albums and has become one of the most successful progressive rock bands of the 21st century.

Final Thoughts

The 2000s were a great decade for rock music. There were so many amazing bands that it’s hard to choose just 20. These bands prove that rock is still alive and well. If you’re on the lookout for some great new music, be sure to check out these popular bands from the past decade. You might just find your new favorite band!

Green Day Featured Image (Top-Left) by: ECarterSterling, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Red Hot Chili Peppers Featured Image (Bottom-Left) by: Kreepin Deth, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Paramore Featured Image (Bottom-Right) by: Raph_PH, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Brian Clark is a multi-instrumentalist and music producer. He is passionate about practically all areas of music and he particularly enjoys writing about the music industry.

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