Almost every musician in a popular band feels the need to spread their wings and leave the nest at some point in their career. Sometimes it works out and sometimes it doesn’t.
Here are 5 examples of great side projects that perhaps didn’t get the coverage they deserved.
Radiohead’s drummer Philip Selway has actually released two solo albums during his time off from the band. 2010’s ‘Familial’ failed to set the world alight however, 2014’s ‘Weatherhouse’ is actually a beautifully constructed piece of work. All Music described the record as “an immaculately crafted, impossibly tasteful miniature”. You can almost feel the impact that Selway must have on Radiohead’s songwriting.
Department of Eagles
Daniel Rossen is possibly one of the most underrated guitar players of his generation, and is one of the main reasons that Grizzly Bear are such a successful band. His side project Department of Eagles actually began around the same time as Grizzly Bear, but feature way more of Rossen’s defined guitar style that lies somewhere between Chet Atkins and Paul Simon.
Julian Casablancas + The Voidz
Julian Casablancas put together his lo fi, art rock project The Voidz back in 2013. The band are essentially a more 80’s looking, heavily distorted version of The Strokes, but despite seeming a little ‘uber hipster’ they actually sound pretty awesome.
The Dead Weather
Jack White has had a fair few side projects by this point in his career, and now it seems is more than comfortable to go it alone. The Dead Weather saw White team up with Alison Mosshart of The Kills, Dean Fertita of QOTSA and Jack Lawrence of previous Jack White side project The Raconteurs. The Dead Weather have so far released three studio albums. Their last record ‘Dodge and Burn’ was released in September of last year, and is well worth checking out.
The Whitest Boy Alive
The Whitest Boy Alive are a German / Norwegian band based in Berlin. The band was originally intended as a short side project by Kings of Convenience vocalist Erlend Øye, but ended up performing together for 11 years . The Whitest Boy Alive were one of the most interesting bands of the 2000s, and developed a unique sound by emulating electronic dance music with real instruments.