Nuclear Blast

Nuclear Blast is an independent record label and mail order record distributor with subsidiaries in Germany, the United States and Brazil. The record label was founded in 1987 by Markus Staiger in Germany. Originally releasing hardcore punk records, the label moved on to releasing albums by melodic death metal, grindcore, industrial metal, power metal and black metal bands, as well as tribute albums. It also distributes and promotes two post-hardcore/metalcore labels, SharpTone Records, focused on American scene, and Arising Empire, focused more on European bands.

In October 2018, French independent label Believe Digital acquired a majority stake in Nuclear Blast.


More recent signings include names such as Epica, The Adicts, Wednesday 13, Slayer, Sepultura, Blind Guardian, Helloween, Opeth, Decapitated, Dimmu Borgir, Danzig, Cradle of Filth, Edguy, Eluveitie, Nightwish, Symphony X, Suffocation, Machine Head, Fear Factory, Sabaton, Fit for an Autopsy, Rob Zombie, Comeback Kid, Ministry, The Damned Things, Alcest, As I Lay Dying, and Obscura.


Nuclear Blast was formed in 1987 after founder Markus Staiger traveled throughout the United States for four weeks and saw a gig of his favorite band BL'AST!. The label's first release was a vinyl compilation called Senseless Death (NB 001) featuring US hardcore bands like Attitude, Sacred Denial, Impulse Manslaughter and others.

Swedish band Meshuggah became the first band in the history of Nuclear Blast Records to crack the Billboard 200, landing at number 165 with their 2002 album, Nothing. Meshuggah also became the first Nuclear Blast band to be reviewed in Rolling Stone magazine.

In 2004, Finnish symphonic metal band Nightwish released Once on Nuclear Blast, which rocketed to the top of the charts in multiple countries, including Finland, Germany, Norway, Greece, Sweden, Austria, and more. It became the first release in the company's history to reach number 1 on the German charts. Slayer released the album Repentless in 2015 which went to number 4 on the Billboard 200 making it the highest charting Nuclear Blast release in the United States.

The exclusive distribution in Greece is being carried out by Infinity Entertainment IKE.