Since 2000, metal has shape-shifted drastically. From primal nu-metal and core anthems, to the zenith of tech-death and prog, to a revival of classic thrash and occult doom, and post-genre amalgamations filled with contrary dynamics, metal remains the most innovative and fascinating subculture on the planet.

Metal ain't dead, folks. It's just evolved at speeds never seen before in popular culture.

Looking deep into the 21st century, we've pulled metal's most important and influential gems from Y2K to present day. While enough time has passed for tracks like Tool's "Lateralus," System of a Down's "Chop Suey!" and Opeth's "Blackwater Park" to reach iconic status, we've also given love to more recent cuts which forced metal to expand its horizons. You'll find tracks by genre benders such as Scarlxrd, Zeal & Ardor and Babymetal, who sprouted new branches on metal's family tree to mass acclaim, setting themselves up for possible legendary status in the near future.

The 21st century has been a diverse and experimental one, so delve deep by checking out our picks for The 66 Best Metal Songs of the 21st Century in the gallery below. And be sure to check out the 66 Best Hard Rock Songs of the 21st Century here.

The 66 Best Metal Songs of the 21st Century