Readers of Ultimate Guitar ranked Van Halen’s 1978 song “Atomic Punk” among the heaviest songs of the 1970s.
The guitar community website has a weekly poll asking readers to vote an various topics. This week they wanted to know which song from the ’70s is the heaviest of them all. Van Halen’s classic deep track from their ’78 debut album fared well amongst some heavy hitters including The Scorpions, UFO, KISS, Judas Priest, Aerosmith, Ted Nugent, Queen, Rush, Motörhead, Deep Purple, Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath.
Here’s what Slavkovic had to say about “Atomic Punk”, which placed 13th on the list:
“We all know how Van Halen changed modern music for good. It’s not even an understatement to say that they brought heavy metal into the mainstream, eventually even impacting pop culture altogether. For this list, the UG community brings ‘Atomic Punk’ from the band’s self-titled debut record.”
Below is the entire top 20 Heaviest Songs of the 70’s list as voted by UG readers:
- Black Sabbath – Into the Void
- Led Zeppelin – Immigrant Song
- Deep Purple – Highway Star
- Motörhead – Overkill
- Rush – Working Man
- Queen – Stone Cold Crazy
- Rainbow – A Light in the Black
- The Edgar Winter Group – Frankenstein
- Aerosmith – Nobody’s Fault
- Ted Nugent – Stranglehold
- Focus – Hocus Pocus
- Nazareth – Hair of the Dog
- Van Halen – Atomic Punk
- Judas Priest – Delivering the Goods
- KISS – God of Thunder
- UFO – Rock Bottom
- King Crimson – Red
- Scorpions – The Sails of Charon
- Jethro Tull – Locomotive Breath
- Saxon – Stallions of the Highway
Interesting to see Black Sabbath top this list with “Into The Void”. Here is what Guitar World once wrote of “Atomic Punk” and its Sabbath influence:
“Eddie Van Halen often credited Black Sabbath as an early influence, and you can really hear that inspiration during this song’s versus when he plays rapidfire staccato eighth notes that evoke ‘Paranoid’. But Tony Iommi never played anything as brutally boisterous as Ed’s intro, where he summoned a wash of dissonant white noise by rubbing the strings with his palm and processing the signal with an MXR Phase 90, creating what sounds like a helicopter with chainsaws for rotor blades.”
Read Ultimate Guitar‘s entire article on the 20 heaviest songs of the ’70s at their official website HERE.
So Van Halen fans….is “Atomic Punk” the heaviest track from Van Halen’s ’78 debut? What’s the heaviest Van Halen song of them all? Let us know in the comment section below!