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Bands that got better?


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Ok, most of the time when you hear people talking about bands, it's always "oh, but thier old stuff is so much better!".

So, what bands do you think have got progressively better over time?

Within reason, look at bands with at least 4 albums or something like that, as comparing a band with 2 albums is a little pointless.

For me, even though I don't like them that much, AFI's early stuff is horrible, whilst thier last album was actually a pretty good listen.

At The Gates is another band, as thier first two albums or so weren't very good, but they released two corking albums before they eventually split up.

Any good examples?

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The Get Up Kids...their first album was good...their second album was mediocre...their third album was completely different to the other two and their sound hadn't been honed...the 4th album was a motherfucking masterpiece.

Strung Out (Don't act surprised motherfuckers)...I'm not going through album by album. I can't be arsed. Just technically they've gotten better over time. The guitar work is tighter and more effective. The lyrics are more poetic (Cruz's skills have honed over the years). And the drumming is as always exciting.

Placebo...I've always had a soft spot for them...however their full albums have enver really excelled (Due to half of it sounding the same...and the rest sounding the same to half of the previous album ¬_¬)...however their past two albums have both been great throughout, without the band really making any technical breakthroughs.

There's more, but my minds drawing a blank (And a picture of a naked woman...far more appealing).

The Beatles...definately.

Death Cab For Cutie...I completely forgot. Another example of the last two albums being great (Though even more so than Placebo).

**Waits for bands that have gotten worse**

Edited by YI
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I'd say Husker Du, not that they were bad in the begining, because they were awesome. However, it's hard to ignore an album like Zen Arcade which came out in 1986, a few years after a lot of their hardcoreish attempts. I loved the hardcore albums, but something about Zen Arcade sounds like a more polished band with a lot more artistic creativity.

I think the Germs are an obvious example as well, not so much in the quality of their albums, but the talent level within the band. You may not notice so much in the recordings, but when the Germs first took the stage in the 1970s, they were reportedly awful, absolutely awful. They apparently had very little experience with their instruments and were more of a novelty act. The one thing that kept things interesting initially were Darby Crash's antics, and the fact that he was an extremely brilliant mind with a knack for writing very creative songs. Fortunately, the Germs did learn to play their instruments and became one of the most influential punk bands of their era. Some you may know Pat Smear (the guitar player) who went on to play Unplugged with Nirvana and also played with the Foo Fighters.

I think a lot of people enjoy bands earlier work more because typically the bands are playing what has influenced them. It's when bands start moving past the first or second album that will alienate the certain fans. I think the reason being is that a lot of groups start to experiment with sounds that they have no business experimenting with certain sounds. Most fans want to hear the solid music that the band churned out in the begining, not some venture in electric saxophone synthesizers.

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I agree with Clawson on the RHCP comment. I think Kerrang! (ok, not always a great source of things, but I agreed with this point) got it best when they said they went from being a "poor funk band to a good rock band".

Although they did peak with BloodSugarSexMagik in my eyes, which was kinda at thier midway point.

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Mr. Bungle definitely kept getting better with every album. California was all kinds of awesome.

The Mars Volta just keep getting better and better, and they were class to begin with.

I find it impossible to compare one Mr. Bungle with another myself. Like, they are the only band where I love everything equally... Oh, Fantomas too I suppose.

Mars Volta definitely do keep getting better though. Forget to mention them.

EDIT- As for RHCP. Californication was their peak I thought. But I do agree they got better as the 90's started. They weren't that bad with their Funk Rock I thought, but their newer music is far superior.

Edited by damshow
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Cradle of Filth: Yeah, I know that a lot of people have this major hate-on for them for whatever reason; the most common of which being "They're not even Black Metal anymore. They sold out. Blah blah blah". The fact of the matter, is that while Cradle of Filth may not classify as Black Metal as it stands today...the music is a million times better. Everything has gotten progressively better with the band. The songwriting, the instruments, the vocals, the production...everything. I like their early stuff, but for someone to tell me that The Principle of Evil Made Flesh is actually better than Nymphetamine is ridiculous.

I agree with the comment on AFI. I love them, and do very much enjoy their more punkish sound, but The Art of Drowning and Sing the Sorrow are undoubtebly their best albums.

I'm sure there are more, but I can't think of anything off the top of my head... umm... Atreyu has definately gotten better. I saw Tristy shitting all over them in the Ozzfest thread, but they're a good solid Screamo band (and yes Tristy, they DO belong on Ozzfest). Suicide Notes and Butterfly Kisses was a solid debut, but The Curse was an amazing album, and I'm sure that when I pick up the new one next month, if their track on the Underworld 2 soundtrack was any indication, I'll probably love the new one just as much, if not more, than The Curse.

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