When considering the Top 50 Thrash Metal Albums of all time, one of the questions that surfaces is, "Well, what does thrash sound like anyway"?

After all, this heavy metal offshoot has branched out in countless different directions since it stormed onto the scene circa 1983, and many of the subsequent metallic sub-genres it helped spawn along the way -- death metal, black metal, metalcore, you name it -- are now often intertwined and confused with the original style.

So as we sorted through the potential candidates, a certain sonic purity wound up rising to the top, which meant a lot of '80s stalwarts made the cut, but also some modern day purveyors of thrash's fundamental traits.

The end results are, as always, somewhat objective, so be sure to take a grain of salt with the final list of Top 50 Thrash Metal Albums in the gallery below.

10 Greatest Thrash Metal Bands