With Americans about to commence the Memorial Day long weekend, we thought it would be fitting to list five bands that we would like to see reunite, make a kick ass album, and then go on a prolonged tour. We’re not talking about bands whose members are eligible for Old Age Security or Social Security and want to make one last money run. Rather, these are bands that created music and split up at the top of their games.

 

THE VERVE

Richard Ashcroft, Nick McCabe, Simon Jones, Peter Salisbury, and Simon Tong, where have you all gone? Isn’t this five-year “holiday” long enough? Screw Oasis, this band was as close as there was to replicating the sound and aura of The Beatles (ok, that’s slightly exaggerated but not too far from the truth). They’re best known for “Bittersweet Symphony”, but they had other terrific tracks, such as “Lucky Man”, “The Drugs Don’t Work”, and “One Day”. The band produced four albums together – A Storm in Heaven (1993), A Northern Soul (1995), Urban Hymns (1997), and Forth (2008) – and while they have re-united once before, it’s probably a long shot that they will reunite for a third time, but we can always hope!

 

QUEEN SARAH SATURDAY

Queen Sarah Saturday may be most famous for the use of their song “Seems” in the movie Empire Records, but The Durham, NC band has their fingerprints all over the indie and alternative music scene in 2014.  The band consisted of Johnny Irion, who now plays with Sarah Lee Guthrie, Woody Guthrie’s granddaughter, in Sarah Lee and Johnny; guitarist Ryan Pickett is now the sound engineer for My Morning Jacket; and drummer Zeke Hutchins, who has drummed for Tift Merritt and Sharon Van Etten before joining up with Mick Management, who manages bands like Deer Tick and Real Estate.  If these guys could get back together for a few shows, I’d probably go out of my way to check them out.  Their only LP,1994’s Weave, is a great, yet sometimes sloppy record and listening to it always brings back great memories of growing up in the 1990s.

 

THE MUSIC

Before the mass infusion of psychedelia that has invaded today’s indie music scene, The Music, the Leeds-based band, was producing some great, innovative music, meshing together psychedelic rock, electronic, and disco into a powerful, explosive sound. Their self-titled 2002 debut was critically acclaimed and remarkable. They followed that up with the equally stunning, Welcome to the North (2004). In 2008, they released their final LP, Strength in Numbers, which was solid, although not as forward thinking as the previous two. In 2011, the band separated, to much of many fans’, including Ben’s, dismay. Maybe they’ll surprise us and reunite, but we know it’s a long shot. For now, we’ll have to settle with their electrifying songs, such as “Take the Long Road and Walk It”, “Human”, “Getaway”, “Breakin'”, and “The People”.

 

TARKIO

It’s weird, I wouldn’t call myself the biggest The Decemberists fan, but I would love to see Colin Meloy play a few shows performing Tarkio songs exclusively.  In the light of the popularity of The Decemberists, Tarkio’s music started to get discovered and gain popularity around 2006, and Kill Rock Stars released a compilation of Tarkio songs entitled Omnibus, which featured songs from their EP Sea Songs for Landlocked Sailors and their LP I Guess I Was Hoping For Something More. I’m not sure if an album from Meloy in 2014 could sound anything like the-rough-around-the-edges, Americana-style folk music of Tarkio, so an album wouldn’t be necessary. A reunion, though, would be worth it just to hear Meloy sing “Caroline Avenue”, “Neapolitan Bridesmaid”, and “Save Yourself” in concert . Now that would be absolutely incredible.

 

WOLF PARADE

A band that split at the height of its artistic creativity is Montreal’s Wolf Parade. From 2003 to 2011, they produced some of the best indie rock, sometimes verging on prog-rock, in the business. Anthemic, pulsating, captivating, and crowd-pleasing, their music was made for big and small stages.  While they originally announced in 2011 they were going “on hiatus”, the band formally announced the split in the summer of 2012.  The writing was on the wall, though, with co-founders and co-frontmen, Spencer Krug and Dan Boeckner, having several side projects on the go. It’s unfortunate that Wolf Parade only left their fans with three albums – Apologies to the Queen Mary (2005), At Mount Zoomer (2008), and Expo 86 (2010). However, their music lives on and can also be heard in the music of Boeckner’s side projects (the now defunct Handsome Furs and with Spoon’s Britt Daniels as Divine Fits) and indie megastars Arcade Fire.

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