Mind you, I’m not talking about drug overdoses and bankruptcy and that sort of trivial stuff. I’m talking about bands whose quality gap is the greatest.
5. Chicago. From jazz-rock to Peter Cetera.
4. Red Hot Chili Peppers. Have you ever listened to their early stuff? It’s super quirky/funky. Then they polished it up a bit and made some really good music. Their current stuff is just dullsville, in spite of the striking musicianship of Flea.
3. Jefferson Airplane / Starship. Go Ask Alice? Dreamy, trippy, epic. We Built This City (on Rock & Roll) was later voted Worst Song of the 80s. Think about that. And yes it really is that bad. Ironic for a song of that name – it isn’t rock & roll.
2. Billy Joel. Give 52nd Street a spin (since it’s vinyl) and then listen to We Didn’t Start the Fire. Something weird happened after he started considering himself a composer. Or maybe it was just the booze.
1. U2. It pains me to say it, but it’s true. Their trajectory has been much like the RHCPs, in a different style. Raw and emotional early, powerful at their peak (Joshua Tree), still interesting in the industrial phase, and now BORING BORING BORING. I was a huge U2 fan from October through probably Zooropa. Now I’m not.
What do you think? Who’d I miss?