Seems like just about every day I am hearing about a new “supergroup” of sorts being put together. A group of musicians who have other main bands getting together to make an album. This is yet another by product of the shrinking record business. If you aren’t selling any real copies of your albums with your main band, maybe be in five bands at the same time and combined there might be some sales? Or maybe even have a hit with the side band (if that were to ever happen the main band would likely be abandon no doubt). I am not judging these artists for doing these things. I would never begrudge anyone doing what they can to make a living and survive in a business where 10,000 copies sold gets you top 10 on Billboard and sadly off the charts three weeks later in many cases. The truth is some artists making great new music are selling around 2-5000 copies. Some even less. So I get the multi tasking. I also have to laugh at how criticized a guy like Mike Portnoy was for taking this approach a few years ago. Guess what? Now it’s the norm and Mike having a few bands seems more than normal. Almost everyone is doing it. I miss the days when seeing your favorite band or musicians was a once a year very special thing. This all feeds in to the over touring and over exposure of some artists. Some are actually hurting their draw they play so often. Some are going less is more and actually getting paid better for playing less. Again, everyone does what they have to in order to survive, I get that. But what is frustrating about some of these “projects” is the almost total lack of real support for them. As fans we get invested in this stuff, buy the music (hopefully), and then sometimes don’t even see a live show happen. Then a month later we are hearing about another band with some of the same members to buy that release! It’s getting hard to keep up with all of this and it’s my job to do so. So I can’t even imagine how convoluted it must be to the casual rock fan to sort out. Some of these bands are good and have the right intentions. They actually all get in a room, work together, and try and make a real run with it. Others are a bunch of tracks emailed back and forth by guys that never even met or were ever in the same room, cut together with pro tools, throw it out and see what happens. These are often bad and dilute the scene and often have no chemistry or shot at success. I personally was directly involved in one of these projects that worked, The Winery Dogs. Those guys made the band a priority, all recorded and wrote together, and toured their asses off the promote it (and made an amazing album!). Now in down time they are all doing some other stuff but will reconvene in 2015 to continue. But sadly I see so many of these bands jam the pipeline and you can just tell it’s never going to happen. No real label support, no chemistry, no live shows, no great songs. Just throw some names together and see what happens. I hope we get more things like The Winery Dogs breaking through (relatively speaking as far as rock is concerned these days), but the formula I am seeing for so many of these bands does not bode well for that to happen. I’m curious to read your comments as a rock fan what you think of all these bands and are you bothered when you buy the music and it never goes beyond an album release? As always all opinions welcome.

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  • Ryan B. on

    R.I.P to Jack Bruce, member of the original “supergroup” and a tremendous musician and lyricist.

  • Michael on

    There are still hard rock/metal groups emerging. Texas Hippie Coalition is putting out top quality stuff. Astral Doors is the second coming of Ronnie James Dio. Avantasia is a South American band who is putting out great stuff. Bloodbound is metal with words you can understand. Cage is all metal and from San Diego. Children of Bodom is from overseas somewhere around Finland. They have toured the U.S. and everyone in the crowd liked them. Dream Evil is another one of those European born metal groups who would be headlining if it were 1980. Five Finger Death Punch is bulldozing crowds with their brand of metal Gojira is the metal version of Rush. Hatebreed crunches the metal like a jet engine thrusting. The Sword are a young Black Sabbath, while Zimmer’s Hole and Wolf bring the heavy sound on every track. By the way, UDO is simply getting better with age. I swear he’s signed a contract with the devil in exchange for a never ending catalogue of some of the best metal to ever come out. So, maybe if someone started spotlighting some of these groups, this metal thing would get jumpstarted again?

  • Tyler on

    I like that musicians want to do different stuff. They get tired of playinv the same stuff all the time. What really bothers me is the fact that a musician takes his time, money, and whatever else to create a band, make a record or two, sometimes just a few songs, release it and then doesn’t follow through with the band and leaves. This happened with Jason Bohnam and California Breed. Jason took the time to create another band with Glenn Hughes, made a record that people really liked and then jumped ship before touring. Why even bother creating a band and making a record if your just gonna jump ship. Thats not fair to the fans. Sure Glenn Hughes got a new drummer but it isn’t the same. Jason Bohnam is a one of a kind drummer like his dad. You can’t just replace that sound with anybody.

    Also, I don’t like how the music business gets flooded with music because its so hard to keep up like you said. I personally like probably 500-1000 or more or less bands & artists from all genres of music combined. I cant keep up with that and be able to support all of them and buy their records and merchandise and see them in concert and all that. Its just not possible unless I was a millionaire or billionaire and had all the time in the world to go to concerts and buy music and merchandise and support all the bands I like.

    I remember going to Mayhem fest and i remember picking up some free cd samplers from these record labels. I think somewhere on the cd case or something i listed all the bands on the record label. Probably 20 or more bands. 98% of them I had never heard of nor would I bother to listen to them and most likely if I did hear them and like them I wouldnt bother buying their albums or merch or going to their concerts unless they were a real special band worth me checking out. It just feels like you can throw any band together good or bad and get signed to a label like that very easily nowadays. There is no real screening of bands nowadays. Its sucks but that is what the music business has become. Nothing is really special anymore. Even the bands coming out aren’t making good, special, classic music. Majority of the bands on these labels all sound alike and no one is original anymore and making music that will last for all eternity like they used to. Sad truth. Wish there was a way to change all that.

  • Jason on

    The Gramercy Theater is going to rock on December 29th!

  • T on

    How about a band of only people ousted from other bands. Bill Ward, Sebastian Bach, Michael Anthony, Ace Frehley and Vinnie Vincent (if he can be located). Word on the street is that Vinnie Vincent was last seen working a Taco stand in Tijuana, and has never been happier.

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