Our top 10 Accept songs list looks at the body of work of one of Europe’s most successful heavy metal outfits. In its homeland Germany, the band’s impact on the country’s early heavy metal scene is only rivaled by the Scorpions, who have sold over a hundred million album copies globally. Accept’s impact on the music scene goes beyond pioneering the German heavy metal scene. The band played a pivotal role in the development of the thrash/speed metal genre in Germany.
Accept was formed in 1976 by bassist Peter Baltes and vocalist Udo Dirkschneider. However, its roots date back to the ‘60s when vocalist Udo and guitarist Michael Wagener teamed up to form a local ensemble under the moniker Band X. Michael Wagener is best known for his impactful work as a mixer/engineer/producer for, Bonfire, Overkill, Alice Cooper, Ozzy Osbourne, Metallica, Bonfire, Dokken, Megadeth, Janet Jackson, and Helloween.
Eventually, the band went professional in 1976, taking on the new name, Accept. The band soon followed the steps of Scorpions by releasing songs that are highly regarded in the German heavy metal scene. Accept remains a darling to heavy metal fans thanks to its ferocious live performance. Udo’s idiosyncratic vocals and the aggressive/brutal songs with alluring guitar riffs make up the biggest reason why the band is a fan favorite for heavy metal lovers. Anthrax, Megadeth, Annihilator, Soundgarden, and Metallica are some of the bands that have cited Accept as an influence.
Accept’s Career Beginnings
In 1979, three years after Accept’s entry into a professional music career, the band released its eponymous debut album. Accept featured a collection of tracks the band had been working on during Accept’s formative years. The album was issued through the Brains Records, once home to Scorpions, Tangerine Dream, Birth Control, and Harmonia.
“Lady You,” “Seawinds,” and “Sounds of War” are some of the best Accept songs from the album. The hit “Seawinds” was covered by the Swedish symphonic metal band Therion. While the album failed to chart, it brought Accept to popularity among heavy metal lovers in Germany.
The Band’s Musical Pursuits after Accept
Accept returned in 1980 with its sophomore studio album, I’m a Rebel. This heavy metal record featured notable hits, including “No Time to Lose” and “I’m a Rebel.” Once again, the album failed to make it to the charts like its predecessor, Accept. However, it helped the band gain international recognition thanks to its availability in the US and UK.
In 1981, the band issued its third studio album, Breaker. This Dirk Steffens-produced album marked Accept’s first LP to be engineered by Michael Wagener. Breaker has often been cited as one of the earliest angry LPs. The album saw the band receive some commercial success despite not making it to the charts. “Midnight Highway,” “Breaker,” and “Breaking Up Again” are some of the biggest Accept songs from the album.
Restless and Wild, issued in 1982, marked the band’s fourth studio album. The LP saw the band blend its signature heavy metal sound with speed metal influences. Vocalist Udo Dirkschneider takes on the vocals duties on every song on this album. Restless and Wild marked the band’s first album to make it to the UK Albums chart, peaking at number ninety-eight. The album also made it to the Dutch and Swedish Albums charts. “Fast as a Shark,” “Restless and Wild,” “Princess of the Dawn,” and “Get Ready” are the most remarkable musical gems featured on the album.
In 1983, Accept released its fifth studio album, Balls to the Wall. The album was a perfect follow-up album to its highly appreciated LP Restless and Wild. Balls to the Walls remains one of the most successful albums in the history of Accept. The album is the only Gold-certified (in the US and Canada) release by Accept. Balls to the Walls rose to number seventy-four on the Billboard 200. “London Leatherboys,” “Balls to the Walls,” “Losing More Than You’ve Ever Had,” and “Losers and Winners” are some of the best Accept songs from the album.
Accept returned in 1985 with its sixth studio album, Metal Heart. The album featured musical gems including “Midnight Mover,” “Screaming for a Love-Bite,” and “Metal Heart.” Accept saw Metal Heart achieve success in the mainstream, with the album peaking at number fifty on the UK Albums chart. On the Billboard 200, Metal Heart rose to number ninety-four.
The band attempted to release yet another classic album to build on the success it had already achieved with its last three records in 1986. However, its seventh LP, Russian Roulette, failed to match the intensity of the band’s previous release. Nevertheless, the album managed to rise to position one hundred and fourteen on the Billboard 200. On the UK Albums chart, Russian Roulette peaked at number eighty. “T.V. War,” “Russian Roulette,” and “Monsterman” are some of the outstanding songs by Accept from the album.
Accept went on to release new albums, including Eat the Heat in 1989, Objection Overruled in 1993, Death Row in 1994, and Predator in 1996. However, these albums struggled commercially and in the mainstream. Eventually, the band signed a recording contract with Nuclear Blast, home to metal bands including As I Lay Dying, Voivod, Testament, Sabaton, Paradise Lost, and Nightwish.
Blood of the Nations, issued in 2010, marked the band’s first album issued through Nuclear Blast Records. The album was the band’s first proper release since the 1985 album, Metal Heart. Blood of the Nations ushered in a great and impactful change in the band’s lineup, with Mark Tornillo taking on the lead vocals role. Udo had left Accept in 1987 to form his heavy metal outfit U.D.O. with which he relished commercial success.
“Teutonic Terror,” “Pandemic,” “New World Comin’,” and “Beat the Bastards” are some of the best Accept songs from the album. Blood of the Nations peaked at number one hundred and eighty-seven on the Billboard 200. The album managed to chart in ten extra nations. However, its sales failed to match those achieved by Balls to the Wall.
In 2012, Accept returned with its thirteenth studio album, Stalingrad. The album achieved mild success, peaking at number eighty-one on the Billboard 200. “Shadow Soldiers,” “Hung, Drawn and Quartered,” and “Stalingrad” are some of the honorable mentions featured on this album. Two years after the release of Stalingrad, Accept issued its fourteenth studio album, Blind Rage. The album is home to some of the best Accept songs, including “Stampede,” “Dying Breed,” and “Final Journey.” Blind Rage topped the German Albums chart, peaking at number thirty-five on the Billboard 200.
The Rise of Chaos, issued in 2017, marked Accept’s fifteenth studio album. Metal fans in the US welcomed this album warmly, having it peak at number one hundred and forty on the Billboard 200. The album also peaked at number three on the German Albums chart. “Koolaid,” “Die by the Sword,” and “The Rise of Chaos” are some of the remarkable musical gems featured on the album.
In 2021, Accept released its sixteenth and most recent album, Too Mean to Die. The album rose to number two on the German Albums chart. Too Mean to Die also performed great on the Swiss, Finnish, and Swedish Albums charts. “The Undertaker,” “Zombie Apocalypse,” and “Too Mean to Die” are some of the best Accept songs from the album.
Accept remains one of the most sought-after heavy metal bands of all time in Germany, thanks to its early ‘80s releases. While the band’s influence on the genre had taken a nosedive for the better part of the ‘90s and early 2000s, Accept rekindled its successful ways with its 2010 release Balls to the Walls.
The band also recorded a stellar performance with the album follow-up releases, Stalingrad and The Rise of Chaos. Accept remains one of the most impactful heavy metal outfits influencing other artists, including Slayer, Overkill, Annihilator, Helloween, and Blind Guardian. Here we present the ten best Accept songs of all time, sampled from the band’s sixteen studio albums.
#10 – Pandemic
Ushering to the top 10 Accept songs list is the hard-hitting ballad “Pandemic.” The song is featured on the band’s comeback album, Blood of the Nations. Unlike some of the radio-friendly releases from previous albums, “Pandemic” takes a deep plunge into the true metal thrill. The song’s lyrics are all about the widespread affection for metal like a “Pandemic.” The song features one of the longest solos by Accept. Not only is the solo long, but quite inspirational. The solo allows metal lovers to fall in love with more than just the song’s lyrics, but also the true sonic influences of pure metal!
# 9 – I’m a Rebel
“I’m a Rebel” is among the most alluring early releases made by this German heavy metal band. The song serves as the album title track of the band’s sophomore studio album. “I’m a Rebel” was penned by the Scottish musician Alex Young. Alex is a brother to George Young of the Easybeats and Angus and Malcolm Young of AC/DC.
“I’m a Rebel” reminds metal fans of a remarkable history of how Accept borrowed one of AC/DC’s rare recorded and unreleased hits. The band made “I’m a Rebel” their own, using it to kickstart their career. Accept released the cover song in 1980, sounding almost like AC/DC as quoted by the band’s guitarist Wolf Hoffman.
The band had quite some doubts about featuring the cover song on its sophomore album at first. Eventually, the song was used as the opening track for the band’s sophomore LP. “I’m a Rebel” was also recorded by U.D.O.
# 8 – Stampede
Coming in at number eight on our top 10 Accept songs is the grandiloquent hit “Stampede.” The song is featured on the band’s fourteenth studio album, Blind Rage. Accept goes extra hard on this hit, proving to be still masters in the heavy metal art. “Stampede” brings the true value of Wolf Tornillo on the guitars for the band. Additionally, the song asserts the dominance of Mark Tornillo on the mic. His powerful vocals find earlier fans of the band reminiscing the good old days with Udo Dirkschneider as the lead singer.
# 7 – Breaker
Breaker, the band’s third studio album, marked the time when the band’s metal sound began to manifest. The album title track takes the spotlight on this ten-track LP. Delivered in a fast tempo, “Breaker” finds Udo delivering incredibly unique raspy vocals that seem to duel Wolf’s guitar riffs wildly. “Breaker” is only rivaled on the album by the enthralling ballad “Midnight Highway.”
Unlike “Breaker,” “Midnight Highway” has a commercial feel and probably the reason why it was one of the most sought-after hits from the album. However, “Breaker” manages to steal the show in some way, thanks to its neo-classical guitar riffs and awesomely hoarse vocals of Udo that are a turn-on to heavy metal maniacs! The band delivered a stellar performance to this song at Wacken in 2017, an affair that resulted in one of Accept’s monstrous live albums Symphonic Terror: Live at Wacken 2017.
# 6 – Princess of the Dawn
Number six on our top 10 Accept songs list is the intoxicating hit “Princess of the Dawn.” The song is featured on Accept’s fourth studio album, Restless and Wild. “Princess of the Dawn” has been featured once more on eight compilation albums by Accept, proving its special place for both the band and its fans.
The song slowly invites metal fans into a frenzy thanks to its rip-roaring jagged riff that makes it among the anthemic metal hits from Restless and Wild. “Princess of the Dawn” was covered by the Swedish melodic death metal band Godgory.
# 5 – Shadow Soldiers
Since Accept rekindled its heavy metal fire with Blood of the Nations in 2010, its releases have been quite remarkable, bringing the best of the band’s new-classic heavy metal ballads. The fifth pick of our ten best Accept songs is “Shadow Soldiers,” one of the musical gems from the band’s LP, Stalingrad.
While the album features a neo-classic heavy metal vibe, “Shadow Soldiers” reminds us of the band’s impressive old-school metal influences. The song’s brilliance is sheltered under Wolf’s brilliance on the guitar. Thanks to songs like “Shadow Soldiers,” Stalingrad was crowned the Best Heavy Metal/Melodic Album in the 2012 Metal Storm Award.
#4 – Fast as a Shark
“Fast as a Shark” is one of the concert staples/fan-favorite tracks by Accept. The song is featured on the band’s fourth studio album, Restless and Wild. “Fast as a Shark” has been cited as one of the inaugural speed metal songs ever released by the band. This claim comes from the band’s former lead singer Udo and Anthrax drummer Charlie Benante.
“Fast as a Shark” has its intro sampling the 1830 folk song Ein Heller und ein Batzen. The song has been featured on the soundtrack of several films, including People Like Us and Dèmoni. “Fast as a Shark” has been covered by reputable artists, including U.D.O., Helloween, Rage, Witchery, Steel Prophet, Hammercult, Debauchery, Holy Grail, and Godhate.
#3 – Metal Heart
The third pick of our top 10 Accept songs list is the tremendous hit “Metal Heart.” “Metal Heart” serves as the album title track to the band’s sixth studio album. Like most of the songs from this album, “Metal Heart” finds a balance between the band’s hard-hitting heavy metal sound and a more commercial melody.
Achieving such kind of balance is what catapulted Scorpions to selling over a hundred million globally. “Metal Heart” finds guitarist Wolf Hoffman giving the best of his technical skills on the guitar. The song pays homage to compositions by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky and Ludwig Van Beethoven. “Metal Heart” was covered in 1998 by Dimmu Borgir.
#2 – Teutonic Terror
Life without Udo Dirkschneider was unimaginable for most of the band’s fans until Mark Tornillo proved to be a formidable replacement. Thanks to his blustery growls in the album Blood of the Nations. “Teutonic Terror” is arguably the best Accept song since the band’s comeback album in 2010.
The song feels like a new rebirth of heavy metal sound, thanks to its killer riffs, perfect harmony, and above all, magical vocals by Mark Tornillo. “Teutonic Terror” bagged the Metal Anthem accolade in the 2011 Metal Hammer Awards.
#1- Balls To The Wall
Number one of our top 10 Accept songs is the glamorous hit “Balls To The Wall.” The song serves as the album title track to one of the band’s most successful albums. “Balls to the Wall” and Scorpion’s “Rock You Like A Hurricane” have one thing in common. Both are built on American phrases. However, each of the bands went a notch higher by giving their own meaning to the phrases.
“Balls to the Wall” has been cited as one of the most influential anthems against oppression. This politically-fuelled anthem alludes to waking up one day and standing for one self’s rights. “Balls to the Wall” inspired “Breaking The Chains” by Dokken. Accept enjoyed quite some airplay on MTV, thanks to “Balls to the Wall,” which would later become the band’s signature hit. The song was covered by Amon Amarth, Puscifer, BulletBoys, and Fozzy.