We're all guilty of singing in the car and trying to emulate our heroes, but more often than not we ultimately fall flat in our idol worship. Every once in a while, a singer will pop up who does such a convincing job at paying homage to their favorite singer that they wind up sounding just like them. While we all consider singers like Bruce Dickinson and Rob Halford irreplaceable, some singers show us that if they swapped places in the studio, a huge number of people might not have ever known.
What makes a metal legend irreplaceable goes beyond his or her voice; it's about the character they bring to the band and the stage presence that really cements their status in the pantheon. With this list, we're going to have some fun taking a look at some underground singers as well as singers who have made a name for themselves over the years, showing that they are more than just mere clones. Let's take a look at 10 Singers Who Sound Like Metal Legends!
Ralf Scheepers (Tyran' Pace)Sounds Like: Rob Halford (Judas Priest)
Wait, this isn't a lost Judas Priest record? Nope! Before Gamma Ray and Primal Fear, Ralf Scheepers was in a little-known band called Tyran' Pace that worshipped Judas Priest in the most sincere way. Scheepers was a mere 20-years-old when this album was released, which is even more jaw-dropping. He has all the Halford-isms down and can let his voice tear into the stratosphere. It's a wonder he wasn't chosen after auditioning for Judas Priest following Halford's departure.
Christopher Taylor Beaudette (Nightbitch)Sounds Like: Glenn Danzig (Misfits, Danzig)
While Christopher Taylor Beaudette maintains his singing is more Jim Morrison worship than Glenn Danzig, the interpretation comes down to the listener. Nightbitch's riffing has a heavy influence from John Christ, which helps make the Danzig association with Beaudette. Both bands have songs regarding sex and wolves in their repertoire, making Beaudette's croon trick the listeners into thinking they may have heard more lost Danzig tunes.
Ray Gillen (Badlands)Sounds Like: David Coverdale (Whitesnake)
Following a brief stint with Black Sabbath, singer Ray Gillen hooked up with former Ozzy Osbourne guitarist Jake E. Lee and formed Badlands. Jake E. Lee toned down his ripping traditional metal style from the Ozzy records and stuck to a bluesier sound like early Whitesnake with a bit more edge. Coincidentally, Gillen does a pretty mean David Coverdale impersonation with all the small nuances of Coverdale's upper registry.
Joe Comeau (Liege Lord)Sounds Like: Bruce Dickinson (Iron Maiden)
Bruce Dickinson was in a band before Iron Maiden, but this album was released six years after Bruce shacked up with Maiden. So, no, Dickinson is not a member of Liege Lord here, though it could be easy to believe he has kept a secret. Joe Comeau replaced Andy Michaud, bringing a different style to the band's speed metal attack. His voice has more grit than Michaud and sounds dangerously close to Bruce Dickinson. A fun fact is that Comeau was also one of the 10 finalists auditioning for Judas Priest after Rob Halford's departure.
Todd La Torre (Queensryche)Sounds Like: Geoff Tate (Queensryche)
When things went down in the Queensryche camp, Todd La Torre was chosen to replace the estranged Geoff Tate and has done a stellar job with the band's classic material. The ability to nail the hits while displaying his own style on his debut album with the band is a testament to his talents. Before Queensryche, La Torre was in Crimson Glory, replacing the late Midnight and taking on some of the most challenging vocal work in metal with perfection and can be seen here.
Jens Carlsson (Savage Circus)Sounds Like: Hansi Kursch (Blind Guardian)
When drummer Thomen Stauch left Blind Guardian, Savage Circus became his primary focus, though it feels like Blind Guardian just released more albums. Savage Circus takes on the sound of early to mid-'90s Blind Guardian, with a boost from singer Jens Carlsson. If you didn't know any better, you would think you were listening to a Blind Guardian album. Carlsson is a dead-on clone of Hansi Kursch when it comes to the mid range singing. Just try listening to this song and convincing yourself this is anyone but Kursch.
Dan Fondelius (Count Raven)Sounds Like: Ozzy Osbourne (Black Sabbath)
Black Sabbath recently released '13' as their first album with Ozzy Osbourne in 35 years, but for a while if you wanted to hear a similar sound, you'd probably would have had to turn to Count Raven's music. Dan Fondelius lives in a world where the British band is seemingly the only music he has ever heard and ever wants to hear. His voice is almost identical to Ozzy's and has all the intonations and inflections in his phrasing that Ozzy laid down with Sabbath. If you wanna fool your friends, put on Count Raven and ask them if they've ever heard this Black Sabbath album.
Chris Black (High Spirits)Sounds Like: Klaus Meine (Scorpions)
Within three seconds of listening to 'Another Night in the City,' you're probably pumped to hear a new Scorpions jam. Here's the catch: the band is actually High Spirits from Chicago. Chris Black manages to sing like Klaus Meine, whose voice has always had a heavy German accent. The lyrics even sound like Scorpions to match the energetic metal spirit the German band have always had. Roll those windows down, turn the music up, and enjoy!
Meister Cagliostro (Attic)Sounds Like: King Diamond (Mercyful Fate)
One of the last singers anyone ever wants to attempt to impersonate is King Diamond. Until very recently, his style remained untouched and for good reason. Along came Attic, a band that boasts two members of another formidable band worship act Warhammer. Attic blend Mercyful Fate and King Diamond's music and tie it all together with Meister Cagliostro's voice. He sounds more like modern day King Diamond than the glass-shattering shrieks of yesteryear.
Jorn Lande (Jorn)Sounds Like: Ronnie James Dio (Rainbow, Black Sabbath, Dio)
Former Masterplan singer Jorn Lande released a Dio covers album shortly after Ronnie had passed away, but it was in the works long before his passing. A lifelong fan of Ronnie James Dio, Lande does a splendid job with his covers album to pay tribute to his idol. He also joined Heaven and Hell on stage with Glenn Hughes at the High Voltage Festival for the last ever live performance of the Dio-era Black Sabbath material. Like his effort on 'Stand Up and Shout' here, Lande gave a flawless performance with Heaven and Hell in an emotional show.