Best Van Halen ‘Van Halen’ Song – Readers’ Poll


Van Halen's self-titled 1978 debut album pretty much set the world on fire, with Eddie Van Halen's guitar work completely rewriting how the instrument was used on rock and metal records going forward.

So picking just one favorite song from this record is going to be incredibly difficult. Two tracks from the album are such undeniable anthems that they stayed in the band's concert repertoire even during the Sammy Hagar years: 'Runnin' With the Devil' and 'Ain't Talkin' 'bout Love.'

There's also the amazing electric guitar solo showcase 'Eruption,' which dozens of aspiring axeman are trying to learn right this second in bedrooms and guitar shops all around the world, the Kinks cover 'You Really Got Me' and the tender ballad 'Little Dreamer.'

But mostly, 'Van Halen' is about an unrelenting barrage of jaw-dropping riffs ('Atomic Punk,' 'On Fire') combined with a shockingly developed sense of pop songcraft and humor ( the do-wop breakdown in 'I'm the One) and performed by a club-tested band. We don't envy you, having to pick just one song from this landmark album, but we're going to ask you to do so anyway: