10 frontmen who showed themselves in solo work
Any musical collective, good or not, has its own leader – it is the founder, vocalist, songwriter, ideological inspirer and a great charismatic, in the end (underline what is necessary). In short, the frontman is a person without whom there would be no group.
But there are guys among them who have proven that they are capable of musical exploits and beyond collective creativity. BritishWave.ru selected 10 frontmen who also showed great performance in solo roles.
Not surprisingly, it was the magnificent frontman of the reunited Blur, Damon Albarn, who opened our selection. We know Damon also from third-party projects like Gorillaz and The Good, The Bad and The Queen, but the culmination of his eternal musical searches was the full-length solo album “Everyday Robots”, released in 2014. The successful debut album revealed yet another creative facet of the restless innovator Albarn.
Radiohead vocalist and guitarist Tom York, and among other things, a member of the Atoms For Peace supergroup, combined his main activity with solo work in the form of the 2006 debut album “The Eraser”. Eight years later, completely unexpectedly for everyone, “Tomorrow’s Modern Boxes” is published. Even more unexpectedly, York is releasing his brainchild via beat-torrent.
Depeche Mode leader Dave Gahn hatched the idea of a solo album even after the tenth album “Exciter” was released, and only two years later, in 2003, the world heard “Paper Monsters”. Four years later, Gahan recorded the album “Hourglass”, which differs from the previous one in a more electronic sound. The musician also worked closely with the British Soulsavers, who attracted him as a vocalist and lyricist in the 2012 album “The Light the Dead See.”
A year after the collapse of The White Stripes in 2011, Jack White released his first solo album “Blunderbuss”, filled with gloomy love lyrics – a kind of cry from the musician’s soul for which the album became very personal. Well, in the summer of 2014, “Lazaretto” comes out – a wild blues vinaigrette, quite typical of White’s dark genius.
Gerard Way, like Jack White, never combined frontman position with solo activity. Only after the collapse of My Chemical Romance did he leave for free swimming. Gerard was inspired by Great Britain, for whom he had long had a tender love, and therefore it is not surprising that the 2014 album “Hesitant Alien” turned out to be with a bias in British pop.
In 2010, the vocal Brandon Flowers released his debut LP Flamingo. Everything is quite in the spirit of The Killers – the same unique melody, the same recognizable notes. Brandon was determined to continue – in the spring of 2015, he released his second solo album, entitled “The Desired Effect”.
Paul Banks wrote songs and dreamed about a solo career long before the advent of Interpol, but he only matured in his own album in 2009. Banks takes the pseudonym Julian Plenty and creates the debut solo project “Julian Plenti is … Skyscraper”, where an impressive portion of the material was written just in those young years. In 2012, Paul stopped experimenting with his alter ego and released a record with a simple speaking name “Banks”.
The charming bully Pete Doherty became famous not only as the founder (paired with Karl Barat) of the long-suffering The Libertines, in some way repeating the history of Blur, but also as the leader of the highly successful Babyshambles group. Finally, in 2009, Pete released his first solo album “Grace / Wastelands”, favorably received by both fans and critics. By the way, Blur guitarist Graham Coxon took part in the record.
Workaholic bearded dancer Dan Auerbach from The Black Keys managed to light up several more bands, as well as help record albums for many other artists, in particular, acting as the producer of the latest work by Lana Del Ray. Auerbach is revealed as a solo artist through the album “Keep It Hid” in 2009. At the moment, the musician is working on a second solo project under the pseudonym The Arcs.
Cutie Julian Casablancas, still brilliant as a member of The Strokes, managed to collaborate with other artists, and in 2013 even won a Grammy for a joint album with French electronics engineers Daft Punk. In 2009, Casablancas released his first solo album “Phrazes For The Young”, and last year – the album “Tyranny”, but with a play-line called The Voidz.