Top 20 Guitarists in Progressive Metal & Around

Top 20 Guitarists in Progressive Metal & Around
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It’s usually a guitar player who makes the difference. Have a greatest possible rhythm section and a bad guitarist, and you’re off. Luckily progressive metal has shaped many great bands that include great guitarists with awesome rhythm sections.

Prog Sphere made a selection of 20 progressive metal guitarists (and technical, as well) that we think possess great skills and provide outstanding performances. This list is focused on both established musicians and axemen whose talent hints great achievements.

Who did we forget? Leave a comment.

Top 20 Guitarists in Progressive Metal & Around


Fredrik Thordendal (Meshuggah)

John Petrucci (Dream Theater)

Paul Masvidal (Cynic)

Misha Mansoor (Periphery)

Joe Duplantier (Gojira)

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  1. Facundo

    May 21, 2014 at 2:41 am

    You forgot Tim Henson/Scott LePage from Polyphia!

    • dogbert

      May 21, 2014 at 12:48 pm

      lol! Yeah right.

    • Dave

      May 22, 2014 at 6:45 pm

      Sorry but… Fredrik Thordendal can be delete from this list. This song is mostly the intro over 3 minutes and the lead guitar could play a kid whit no guitar skills.
      But maybe its hard to play without fall asleep.

    • Symphont

      May 23, 2014 at 4:46 pm

      What about Michael Romeo?..He doesn’t rank?…Romeo is better than most of these guys..

    • Zach Perry

      May 24, 2014 at 8:59 am

      ^I was totally going to comment that

  2. Zaghuran

    May 21, 2014 at 6:55 am

    I would say you left out Mikael Akerfeldt, the guys from Extol and Leprous, Cloudkicker, Tesseract, Jeff Loomis, and Arjen Lucassen from the likes of Ayreon, etc.

  3. Patrick

    May 21, 2014 at 7:06 am

    John Browne from Monuments!

    • Franz Poscher

      April 11, 2015 at 1:27 pm

      John Browne should be on this list..I agree with Patrick..

  4. James

    May 21, 2014 at 11:52 am

    Where the fuck are Acle Kahney & John Browne

  5. Martihsb

    May 21, 2014 at 1:01 pm

    You forgot Lee McKinney from Born of Osiris

  6. Metalmoser

    May 21, 2014 at 2:14 pm

    where is michael romeo from symphony x?

  7. Enrique Javier Ordaz Ceballos

    May 21, 2014 at 5:40 pm

    Where is Michael Romeo??…Tony Macalpine??

  8. Simon O'Neill

    May 21, 2014 at 7:47 pm

    I feel that you chose the wrong Guitarist for Elitist. Sean Hall was the reason Caves/Earth were so great,and his solo work is fantastic.

    While Julian (a great guitarist) has let the band go back into obscurity.

  9. jewels

    May 21, 2014 at 8:45 pm

    angel vivaldi?! opeth?!

  10. Zack Shannon

    May 22, 2014 at 2:00 am

    No Ron Jarzombek or Michael Wilton?….

  11. zarahuztra

    May 22, 2014 at 3:06 pm

    being a guitarist n a big prog metal fan, i rly cant agree to this list. maybe im just misinterpreting the word “top”. it should say “most talented”, if u got rid of the older guitarists. it is also very focused on djent, n lacks the presence of many great guitarists inside the prog metal-label as a whole.

  12. Mr. Blueberry

    May 22, 2014 at 3:51 pm

    You forgott Mats Haugen from Circus Maximus

  13. Mig

    May 22, 2014 at 4:47 pm

    omg, Luke Hoskin…

  14. Skippy

    May 22, 2014 at 6:25 pm

    Guthrie Govan???

  15. Exyt

    May 22, 2014 at 7:41 pm

    I think Kiko Loureiro (Solo, Angra) deserves to be in this Top ! He’s awesome ! Fast, technically amazing, and with a great musicality ;)

  16. A

    May 23, 2014 at 4:02 am

    Luke Hoskin from Protest the Hero!! He outclasses all but maybe 3 of the guys on this list.

    • ianleif

      June 21, 2014 at 5:31 pm


  17. Chris

    May 23, 2014 at 1:47 pm

    How is Marco Sfogli not on here?

  18. Marco Foresto

    May 23, 2014 at 9:03 pm

    Sooooo….No Michael Romeo?????? REALLY?!?!?!

  19. Evan Hurd

    May 26, 2014 at 2:55 am

    Okay, uh, Josh Middleton of Sylosis is not only their lead guitarist (who plays rather complex and fast songs) but also their vocalist as well.

    So I’m kind of wondering how he’s not up here.

  20. Francisco David Amaya

    May 27, 2014 at 2:47 am

    Michael Romeo, The Guys From Redemption, and Protest The Hero… So Many 8 string here…

  21. brendan.cook

    May 27, 2014 at 4:34 am

    Really no Guthrie Govan? O_o

  22. Michael Redwine

    May 27, 2014 at 3:33 pm

    It’s really a shame that there’s no Michael Romeo. He is one of the most inspirational guitarists.
    This guy (Srđan Branković) is Serbian Michael Romeo :D

  23. jakko

    May 27, 2014 at 4:45 pm

    Guthrie is awesome but he isn’t progressive metal!!! but where is Jose Macario from Arcadia Libre?

  24. Harris

    May 29, 2014 at 1:36 pm

    Julian Rodriguez is exceptional. Wow !!

  25. Alisson Vidal

    June 1, 2014 at 9:53 pm

    Arjen Lucasseen, Michael Romeo, Mikael Akerfeldt… Anyway, there is a lot of good guitar players outhere in prog universe…

  26. Greg Weatherford

    June 21, 2014 at 2:54 am

    Yeah this list has some good guitarist but it glaringly leaves out some great musicians, Romeo, McAlpine, Henson, Haugen… just really crazy to leave those guys out

  27. Matthias

    August 12, 2016 at 1:18 pm

    Jakup Zytecki (Disperse), Plini, Tomáš Raclavský (Modern Day Babylon), Luc Lemay (Gorguts), Marc Okubo (Veil of Maya), Wacław “Vogg” Kiełtyka (Decapitated), Sithu Aye, Paul Ortiz (Chimp Spanner)

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