XTC

XTC was an English rock band that released ten albums on Virgin between 1978 and 1992, followed by two albums at century’s end on Cooking Vinyl. On their first five albums, XTC’s core consists of vocalist–guitarist Andy Partridge, bassist–vocalist Colin Moulding, and drummer Terry Chambers. During their first two years on Virgin, XTC featured future-Shriekback […]

King Crimson

King Crimson are an English rock band, active at multiple intervals since 1969. The original lineup of guitarist Robert Fripp, bassist–singer Greg Lake, reedist–keyboardist Ian McDonald, and drummer Michael Giles made one album, In the Court of the Crimson King, the catalyst for symphonic-rock. When Lake departed for Emerson Lake & Palmer and McDonald and […]

Queen

Queen was an English rock band that released fourteen studio albums between 1973 and 1991. Their first two albums, Queen and Queen II, contain epic rockers by flamboyant frontman Freddie Mercury and guitarist Brian May, including their early anthem “Keep Yourself Alive.” They scored a transatlantic breakthrough with “Killer Queen,” a cabaret rocker from their […]

Genesis

Genesis was an English rock band that released fifteen studio albums between 1969 and 1997. They formed as a baroque-psych quintet at Charterhouse school and cut their debut album, From Genesis to Revelation, under the guidance of producer Jonathan King. The original lineup featured singer Peter Gabriel, keyboardist Tony Banks, guitarist Anthony Phillips, and bassist […]

Sparks

Sparks is the musical partnership of American keyboardist–songwriter Ron Mael and his vocalist brother Russell Mael. They first recorded as Halfnelson, a quintet with drummer Harley Feinstein and another set of brothers, guitarist Earle Mankey and guitarist–bassist Jim Mankey. They signed to Bearsville for the 1971 release Halfnelson, produced by Todd Rundgren. Soon after, they […]

Chicago

Chicago are an American band formed in 1967; noted as one of the first rock acts with an integrated three-piece brass section. Between 1969 and 1980, they released twelve studio albums on Columbia, followed by five albums on Warner. For eleven years, they maintained the same seven members: keyboardist–singer Robert Lamm, guitarist–singer Terry Kath, bassist–singer […]

The Cure

The Cure are an English rock band that released eight albums and eighteen singles between 1978 and 1989 on Fiction Records. They emerged in the British post-punk movement and cultivated a goth-rock sound and image during the early 1980s. Their popular hits include “Boys Don’t Cry,” “A Forest,” “Let’s Go to Bed,” “The Love Cats,” […]

David Bowie

David Bowie (January 8, 1947 – January 10, 2016) was an English singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and actor with a career in music and the performing arts that spanned more than fifty years. He played in a sequence of mid-Sixties beat groups and released two self-titled albums, charting first with the 1969 opus “Space Oddity.” Between […]

Fleetwood Mac

Fleetwood Mac are an English–American rock band formed in 1967 by drummer Mick Fleetwood and guitarist Peter Green. The first-recorded lineup stabilized with guitarist Jeremy Spencer and bassist John McVie. Green created the band’s name by combining the surnames of Mick (Fleetwood) and John (Mac). This lineup cut three singles and the 1968 albums Peter […]

The Stranglers

The Stranglers are an English rock band, formed in 1974 by guitarist–singer Hugh Cornwell. They rose to prominence with the 1977 albums Rattus Norvegicus and No More Heroes and the UK hits “Peaches,” “Grip,” “Something Better Change,” and “No More Heroes.” Their early sound is characterized by grimy guitar tones, arpeggiated keyboard runs, and the […]

Yes

Yes are an English rock band that released twenty-one studio albums between 1969 and 2014. Formed in London in 1968, their original lineup contained guitarist Peter Banks, keyboardist Tony Kaye, drummer Bill Bruford, and two constant members: bassist Chris Squire and singer Jon Anderson. Their early showpieces include “Looking Around,” “Survival,” “The Prophet,” and “Astral […]

Jethro Tull

Jethro Tull are an English rock band that released twenty studio albums between 1968 and 1999. They are best known for the classic rock evergreens “Aqualung,” “Bourée,” “Bungle In the Jungle,” “Living In the Past,” and “Locomotive Breath.” Their style encompasses blues, folk, hard rock, electronic and orchestral music. Singer Ian Anderson distinguished himself among […]

Elton John

Elton John (born March 25, 1947) is an English vocalist, pianist, songwriter, and philanthropist with a career stretching back to the mid-1960s. He achieved global stardom with his self-titled second album in 1970. Since that time, he has recorded more than 30 albums and scored numerous hits that have gained evergreen status around the world. […]

Todd Rundgren

Todd Rundgren (born June 22, 1948) is an American vocalist, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, bandleader, and producer, originally from Philadelphia. He first emerged in psych-rockers the Nazz, which released two proper albums in 1968–69. He initially recorded solo under the band moniker Runt, issuing the 1970/71 Bearsville albums Runt and The Ballad of Todd Rundgren. Under his […]

Simple Minds

Simple Minds are a Scottish rock band that released eleven studio albums between 1979 and 1995. They first achieved fame in the UK, Europe, and Australia with the 1981–83 hits “Love Song,” “Promised You a Miracle,” “Glittering Prize,” and “Waterfront.” In 1985, they scored a global hit with “Don’t You (Forget About Me).” Simple Minds […]

Squeeze

Squeeze is an English pop-rock band from London, formed in 1974 and active with multiple lineups in the decades since. Between 1978 and 1982, they released five albums on A&M Records. Their biggest hits include “Take Me I’m Yours,” “Cool for Cats,” “Up the Junction,” “Pulling Mussels (from the Shell),” “Tempted,” and “Hourglass.” The songwriting […]

Gary Numan

Gary Numan is an English keyboardist, vocalist, composer, and pilot who has been musically active since the late-1970s. He emerged as the frontman of synth-punks Tubeway Army, which issued two standalone singles and a self-titled album in 1978. After placing his name in front on their 1979 breakthrough release Replicas, he became a solo artist […]

Elvis Costello

Elvis Costello is an English musician, vocalist, songwriter, and producer from Paddington who debuted with the album My Aim Is True on Stiff/Columbia in 1977. After assembling his backing band The Attractions, he issued the popular Radar titles This Year’s Model (1978) and Armed Forces (1979), followed by seven albums on F-Beat between 1980 and […]

Boz Scaggs

Boz Scaggs is an American vocalist, musician, and songwriter who emerged in the late-sixties incarnation of the Steve Miller Band and went solo with a 1969 Atlantic album. Between 1970 and 1988, he released eight albums on Columbia. His popularity peaked with the 1976–80 albums Silk Degrees, Down Two Then Left, and Middle Man. Scaggs […]

Steely Dan

Steely Dan was an American jazz-rock/pop band that released six studio albums on ABC between 1972 and 1977, followed by an eighth on MCA in 1980. After a 20-year break in recording, they issued two discs of new material during the early 2000s. Debuting as a six-piece, the lineup trimmed by 1975 to the duo […]

Rush

Rush was a Canadian maximalist hard-rock trio from Toronto, Ontario, that was active for nearly five decades, debuting on vinyl with a standalone single on Moon Records in 1973, followed by a self-titled album on the label in 1974. After a change of drummers, the lineup solidified around the trio of bassist/vocalist Geddy Lee, guitarist […]

Trevor Rabin

Trevor Rabin (born Jan. 13, 1984) is a South African-born/U.S.-naturalized guitarist, keyboardist, songwriter, and producer with a musical career that dates to the early 1970s. He first emerged in the Johannesburg art-rock/pop band Rabbitt, which he joined at age 18 in 1972. Rabbitt scored locally with the chart-topping symphonic-ballad “Charlie” and the album Boys Will […]

Hugh Hopper

Hugh Hopper (April 29, 1945 — June 7, 2009) was an English bassist from Whitstable, Kent, that gained global renown with jazz-rockers Soft Machine, premiering his signature fuzz-bass sound on 1969’s Volume Two and appearing on the band’s subsequent four albums. In 1973, he released the experimental solo album 1984 on CBS and also appeared […]

Pallas

Pallas are a Scottish symphonic-rock band from Aberdeen, formed in the mid-1970s and unrecorded for much of their first decade beyond a cassette-only release on self-press Granite Wax. Between 1984 and 1986, the band released two albums on Harvest, followed by a long run of self-issued live and studio titles during the 1990s and into […]

Fish

Fish — aka Derek William Dick (born April 25, 1958) — is a Scottish vocalist who rose to prominence as the frontman of English symphonic-rock band Marillion during the 1980s. In 1990, he debuted as a solo artist with the album Vigil in a Wilderness of Mirrors on EMI, followed by several albums on Polydor […]

Gary Moore

Gary Moore (April 4, 1952 — Feb. 6, 2011) was an Irish blues-rock/hard-rock/jazz-rock guitarist with a musical career that spanned more than 40 years. He first emerged as a member of the Limerick rock combo Granny’s Intention, which issued the album Honest Injun on Deram in 1969. This was followed by two albums with blues-rockers […]

Present

Present were a Belgian chamber-rock/Zeuhl ensemble that was initially active during the first half of the 1980s. The band was headed by erstwhile Univers Zéro guitarist Roger Trigaux and also included ongoing UZ drummer Daniel Denis, who concurrently played in Art Zoyd while recording the debut Present album Triskaidékaphobie, released in 1980 on Atem. A […]

The Necks

The Necks are an Australian jazz/ambient/drone trio from Sydney that has released more than 20 albums since 1989, mostly on their own Fish of Milk imprint. Members: Chris Abrahams (piano, organ), Tony Buck (drums, percussion), Lloyd Swanton (bass) Discography: Sex (1989) Next (1990) Aquatic (1994) Silent Night (1996) The Boys (Music for the Feature Film) […]

Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds

Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds are a goth-rock/cabaret ensemble formed in London circa 1983 by Australian vocalist/keyboardist Nick Cave. Between 1984 and 2008, the band released 17 albums on Mute Records, followed by a further round of discs on self-press Bad Seed in the 2010s. Members: Nick Cave (vocals, piano, organ, harmonica), Mick Harvey […]

Herbie Hancock

Herbie Hancock (born April 12, 1940) is an American jazz keyboardist who has been musically active since the late 1950s. Hancock was born in Chicago on April 12, 1940, the middle child of government meat inspector Wayman Edward Hancock and secretary Winnie Belle. Herbie was named after singer and actor Herb Jeffries. At age seven, […]

Chick Corea

Chick Corea (June 12, 1941 – Feb. 9, 2021) was an American jazz pianist, composer, and bandleader with a six-decade career that spanned the early 1960s to the late 2010s. He emerged as a backing player for Mongo Santamaria, Sonny Stitt, Blue Mitchell, Herbie Mann, Hubert Laws, and Cal Tjader. As a solo artist, Corea […]

Ronnie Montrose

Ronnie Montrose (Nov. 29, 1947 — March 3, 2012) was an American guitarist who recorded four albums with namesake hard-rockers Montrose between 1973 and 1976. After debuting as a solo artist with the 1978 Warner Bros. release Open Fire, he cut three numerically titled albums with Gamma between 1979 and 1982. He resumed his solo […]

Kansas

Kansas are an American symphonic/hard-rock band that released nine albums and a live double-LP on CBS-subsidiary Kirshner between 1974 and 1983, followed by a pair of late-’80s albums on MCA. Members: Rich Williams (guitar), Phil Ehart (drums), Steve Walsh (vocals, keyboards, 1972-81, 1986-2014), Kerry Livgren (guitar, piano, synthesizer, 1972-83, 2000), Robby Steinhardt (violin, 1972-83, 1997-2006), […]

Santana

Santana are an American Latin-jazz/rock band from San Francisco, formed in 1966 by guitarist Carlos Santana. Members: Carlos Santana (guitar, vocals), Gregg Rolie (keyboards, vocals, 1966-72), Rod Harper (drums, 1966-67), Gus Rodriguez (bass, 1966-67), Michael Carabello (congas, 1966-67, 1969-71), Tom Frazier (guitar, 1966-67), Bob “Doc” Livingston (drums, 1967-69), David Brown (bass, 1967-71, 1974-76), Marcus Malone […]

Chainsaw Jazz

Chainsaw Jazz was an American jazz-rock band that released the album DisConcerto on Cuneiform in 1993. Members: Mark Stanley (guitar), Christian Nagle (guitar), Mark Smoot (bass), Mark Gilbert (saxophone, clarinet), Ed Maguire (violin, electric mandolin), Paul Sears (drums) DisConcerto was released on Cuneiform Records (cat# RUNE 46) in 1993. It features 15 songs and a […]

Journey

Journey are an American hard-rock/soul band from San Francisco that released nine proper albums and a live double-LP on Columbia between 1975 and 1986. Members: Neal Schon (guitar), Ross Valory (bass, 1973-85, 1995-present), Gregg Rolie (vocals, keyboards, 1973-80), George Tickner (guitar, 1973-75), Prairie Prince (drums, 1973-74), Aynsley Dunbar (drums, 1974-78), Robert Fleischman (vocals, 1977), Steve […]

Al Di Meola

Al Di Meola (born July 22, 1954) is an American guitarist who emerged in the jazz-rock supergroup Return to Forever, playing on the 1974–76 albums Where Have I Known You Before, No Mystery, and Romantic Warrior. As a solo artist, he’s issued more than 40 albums, starting with the 1976/77 Columbia titles Land of the […]

Toto

Toto are an American modern-rock band from Los Angeles, formed in 1977 by prolific industry studio musicians. Members: Steve Lukather (guitar, vocals), David Paich (keyboards, vocals), David Hungate (bass, 1977-83, 2014-present), Jeff Porcaro (drums, 1977-92), Steve Porcaro (keyboards, vocals, 1977-89, 2010-present), Bobby Kimball (vocals, 1977-84, 1997-2008), Mike Porcaro (bass, 1983-2008), Fergie Frederiksen (vocals, 1984-86), Joseph […]

The Manhattan Transfer

The Manhattan Transfer are an American vocal group from N.Y.C., formed in 1969 by swing enthusiast Tim Hauser. The original lineup, a five-piece with songwriter Gene Pistilli, issued one album of retro jazz and pop on Capitol in 1971. Hauser then recruited singers Alan Paul, Janis Siegel, and Laurel Massé, establishing the two man/two woman […]

Exodus

Exodus are an American metal band from San Francisco that released the album Bonded by Blood on Torrid/Music for Nations in 1985, followed by two 1987/89 albums on Combat and another pair on Capitol during the early 1990s. Members: Tom Hunting (drums, vocals, 1979-89, 1997-2005, 2007-present), Kirk Hammett (guitar, 1979-83), Tim Agnello (guitar, 1979-80), Keith […]

Vicious Rumors

Vicious Rumors were an American metal band from Santa Rosa, Calif., that released two albums on Shrapnel/Roadrunner between 1985 and 1988, followed by a pair of albums on Atlantic during the early 1990s. Members: Geoff Thorpe (guitar), Mark Tate (vocals, 1980-82), Walt Perkins (drums, 1980-82), Jim Cassero (guitar, 1980-83), Jeff Barnacle (bass, 1980-85), Jim Lang […]

Savatage

Savatage are an American metal band from Tampa, initially known as Avatar, that released the EP City Beneath the Surface and the album Sirens on Florida small-press Par Records in 1983. Between 1985 and 1995, the band released eight albums on Atlantic. Members: Steve Wacholz (drums, 1983-94), Criss Oliva (lead guitar, vocals, 1983-93), Jon Oliva […]

Slayer

Slayer are an American metal band from Huntington Park, Calif., that released two albums and an EP on Metal Blade/Roadrunner between 1983 and 1985, followed by three albums and a live double-disc on Def Jam/American between 1986 and 1991. Members: Kerry King (guitar), Tom Araya (vocals, bass), Jeff Hanneman (guitar, 1981-2013), Dave Lombardo (drums, 1982-86, […]

Queensrÿche

Queensrÿche were an American metal band from Bellevue, Wash., that released an EP and three albums on EMI America between 1983 and 1988, followed by three further titles on the label during the subsequent decade. Members: Michael Wilton (guitar, backing vocals), Eddie Jackson (bass, backing vocals), Scott Rockenfield (drums, percussion, keyboards), Chris DeGarmo (guitar, backing […]

Overkill

Overkill are an American metal band from Old Bridge, NJ, that released seven albums on Megaforce and Atlantic between 1985 and 1994, followed by titles on CMC, eOne, Steamhammer, and Nuclear Blast during the subsequent quarter-century. Members: D.D. Verni (bass), Rat Skates (drums, 1980-87), Bobby Ellsworth [aka Blitz] (vocals), Robert Pisarek [aka Riff Thunder] (guitar, […]

Metallica

Metallica is an American metal band that spearheaded the US thrash scene with the 1983–84 albums Kill ‘Em All and Ride the Lightning. They shot to fame with their 1986 Elektra release Master of Puppets and its 1988 two-record followup …And Justice for All. Members: Lars Ulrich (drums), James Hetfield (guitar, vocals), Hugh Tanner (guitar, […]

Megadeth

Megadeth were an American metal band from Los Angeles that released the album Killing Is My Business… And Business Is Good! on Combat in 1985, followed by seven further studio albums on Capitol during the subsequent 14-year period. Members: Dave Mustaine (guitar, vocals), David Ellefson (bass, 1983-2002, 2010-present), Greg Handevidt (guitar, 1983-84), Dijon Carruthers (drums, […]

King’s X

King’s X were an American hard-rock band from Houston that released six albums on Atlantic between 1988 and 1996, followed by further titles on Metal blade during the subsequent decade. Members: Doug Pinnick (vocals, bass), Ty Tabor (vocals, guitar), Jerry Gaskill (vocals, drums) Discography: Out of the Silent Planet (1988) Gretchen Goes to Nebraska (1989) […]

Ozric Tentacles

Ozric Tentacles is an English space-rock band from Glastonbury, Somerset, that self-released six cassette-albums, numbered OT 1–6, between 1985 and 1989. In 1990, the band founded Dovetail Records, which they used over a five-year period to issue six new albums and CD-reissue their back catalogue. The band released 13 further titles between 1997 and 2015, […]

Djam Karet

Djam Karet are an American band from Claremont, Calif., that released more than 20 titles on self-press HC Productions between 1984 and the 2010s, in addition to five discs on Cuneiform. Members: Gayle Ellett (guitar, organ, percussion), Mike Henderson (guitar, synthesizer), Chuck Oken, Jr. (drums, percussion, synthesizer), Henry J. Osborne (bass, keyboards, percussion, 1984-?), Aaron […]

New Model Army

New Model Army was an English art-punk band from Bradford, West Yorkshire, that debuted with a pair of EPs in 1983, followed by the album Vengeance in 1984 on small-press Abstract Records. Between 1985 and 1991, the band released five albums and assorted shortplayers on EMI. Members: Justin Sullivan (vocals, guitar, keyboards), Stuart Morrow (bass […]

The Jazz Passengers

The Jazz Passengers were an American avant-jazz band from NYC that released a pair of albums on Les Disques du Crépuscule in 1987/88, followed by Implement Yourself on New World Records/CounterCurrents in 1990. During the subsequent seven-year period, the band released two albums apiece on the Knitting Factory, High Street, and 32 labels, including two […]

U Totem

U Totem were an American symphonic/avant-rock supergroup from Los Angeles that released two CDs on Cuneiform between 1990 and 1994. Members: Dave Kerman (drums, percussion), James Grigsby (guitar, bass), Emily Hay (flute, piccolo, vocals), Sanjay Kumar (keyboards, piano, sitar), Eric Johnson (bassoon, soprano saxophone), Steve Cade (guitar) Discography: U Totem (1990) Strange Attractors (1994)

The Beautiful South

The Beautiful South were an English sophisti-pop band from Kingston upon Hull that debuted with the album Welcome to the Beautiful South on Go! Discs in 1989, followed by nine further discs during the ensuing 16-year period. Vocalist/songwriter Paul Heaton and drummer David Hemingway hailed from The Housemartins. On their sophomoric 1990 release Choke, the […]

The Tone Dogs

The Tone Dogs were an American avant-rock band from Portland, Ore., that released two albums on the NW small-press labels C/Z Records and Soleilmoon Recordings between 1989 and 1991. Members: Fred Chalenor (bass, guitar, keyboards, vocals, violin), Amy Denio (guitar, bass, saxophone, drums, vocals), Matt Cameron (drums, vocals, 1988-89), Will Dowd (drums, 1990-91), Henry Franzoni […]

Rascal Reporters

The Rascal Reporters were an American avant-jazz/rock band from Oak Park, Mich., that released two cassette-albums on self-press Hebbardesque Records in 1980, followed by two proper albums on the label between 1984 and 1988. Members: Steve Gore, Steve Kretzmer Discography: Freaks Obscure (1980) We’re God (1980) Ridin’ on a Bummer (1984) Happy Accidents (1988) Purple […]

The Motor Totemist Guild

The Motor Totemist Guild were an American avant-rock band from San Francisco that released two albums, a standalone single, and a live disc on self-press Rotary Totem between 1984 and 1986, followed by titles on the RēR-affiliates No Man’s Land, Auf Dem Nil, and Cuneiform during the subsequent 13-year period. The band’s participation in the […]

Material

Material were an American avant-rock/No Wave band from NYC that released three EPs on small-press Red Records between 1979 and 1981, followed by two albums on Celluloid in 1981/82. Members: Bill Laswell (bass), Fred Maher (drums), Michael Beinhorn (keyboards), Cliff Cultreri (guitar), William S. Burroughs (voice), Nicky Skopelitis (guitar), Shankar (violin), Simon Shaheen (violin), Jeff […]

Massacre

Massacre were an English-American avant-rock/No Wave trio based in NYC that released the album Killing Time on Celluloid in 1981. The band comprised guitarist Fred Frith (Henry Cow, Art Bears, Skeleton Crew), bassist/producer Bill Laswell (Material), and drummer Fred Maher, who subsequently joined Scritti Politti. In 1998, the Material nameplate was resurrected with drummer Charles […]

Curlew

Curlew were an American avant-rock/jazz band from NYC that debuted with an eponymous release on Landslide Records in 1981, followed by the album North America on the German Moers Music label in 1985. The band’s 1988 release Live in Berlin kicked off a seven-disc run on Cuneiform over the ensuing 15-year period. Members: George Cartwright […]

The Lounge Lizards

The Lounge Lizards were an American avant-jazz/No Wave band from New York that released a self-titled album on Editions EG in 1981, followed by titles on Europa and Island during the ensuing five-year period. Members: John Lurie (alto saxophone, soprano saxophone, vocals), Evan Lurie (piano, organ, keyboards, vocals), Arto Lindsay (guitar, 1979-81), Steve Piccolo (bass, […]

Birdsongs of the Mesozoic

Birdsongs of the Mesozoic were an American avant-rock band from Boston that released two EPs and the album Magnetic Flip on small-press Ace of Hearts between 1983 and 1985, followed by a string of discs on Cuneiform between 1989 and 2006. Members: Erik Lindgren (piano, synthesizer, Farfisa organ, sampling, percussion, drum programming, trumpet), Roger Miller […]

French TV

French TV were an American jazz-rock band from Louisville, Ken., that self-released an eponymous album in 1984, followed by After a Lengthy Silence on local-press Y-Records in 1987. Ten further titles appeared over the subsequent three decades on bassist Mike Sary’s own label. Members: Artie Bratton (guitar), Bob Douglas (drums), Fenner Castner (drums), John Robinson […]

Doctor Nerve

Doctor Nerve were an American avant-rock band from NYC that released the album Out to Bomb Fresh Kings on Punos Music in 1984, followed by five discs on Cuneiform between 1987 an 2000. Members: Nick Didkovsky (guitar), Greg Anderson (bass), Leo Ciesa (drums), Yves Duboin (soprano saxophone), Rob Henke (trumpet), Michael Lytle (bass clarinet, contrabass […]

Forever Einstein

Forever Einstein were an American avant-rock trio from New Milford, Conn., that issued a cassette-EP on guitarist C.W. Vrtacek’s Leisure Time label in 1989, followed by five albums on Cuneiform between 1990 and 2005. Members: Charles O’Meara [C.W. Vrtacek] (guitar), John Roulat (drums), Marc Sichel (bass, 1989-90), Jack Vees (bass, 1993-2005), Kevin Gerety (bass, 2005-present) […]

A Thinking Plague

A Thinking Plague are an American avant-rock band from Denver, Colo., that released two albums on Endemic Music between 1984 and 1986, followed by In This Life on RēR in 1989. Four further discs appeared on Cuneiform during the subsequent three decades. Members: Mike Johnson (guitar, drums, percussion, vocals), Rick Arsenault (drums, 1982-83), Sharon Bradford […]