The 10 Best Musical Trios

LxL_TopTenThursdays_02_900x300Schoolhouse_Rock_3_Magic_Red_Shirt_POP

Editor’s note: This originally published in 2014. Thanks to Nirvana being back in the spotlight with the new HBO documentary, Montage of Heck, we thought we would bring back our list that celebrates Nirvana and many other trios.

The best things in life come in threes. Primary colors, three-piece suits, movie trilogies, and creators of this here blog all come in threes. Schoolhouse Rock, the bedrock from which we have built our collective cultural knowledge and fortitude, even went as far as saying “3 is a Magic Number”.  We at Little by Listen, just hit our three year anniversary, and are happy to still have this format to talk music with each other and you the reader. So in honor and thanks for three wonderful years, we give you our favorite musical trios of all time.

10. Rush

rush

Beyond the quality of the music, an important criteria for this list was strong contribution from all three members, rather than it being more of a one-man show. Rush certainly fits this criteria to a T, even if I don’t think their music is of the highest quality.
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Top Ten Thursday: Best Psychedelic Albums of All Time

psychedelic music

With the music trend increasingly shifting back to psychedelic rock lately, we decided to put our heads together to come up with our favorite psychedelic rock albums of ever. Surprisingly enough, every album on our list was released pre-1979 except Wes’ miss. I guess 60’s and 70’s were just a bit more focused on keeping their listeners really high … high on serotonin levels that is … because everyone of these albums will keep you happy as a clam. Many modern psychedelic albums were considered; Black Mountain, Foxygen, Unknown Mortal Orchestra, Tame Impala. In fact, Flaming Lips and Kurt Vile’s new albums were actually the inspiration. Nonetheless, the below are the albums we think best satisfies those moments you really just need a nice hit of psychedelics:
10. Moby Grape – Moby Grape
Moby Grape, album cover, Moby Grape
Moby Grape’s debut album was an early forerunner to the groovy San Francisco vibes that we all came to know and love. Moby Grape is an often overlooked album, especially when considered how many folk psychedelic acts came to follow suite.
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Divine Fits Review

Divine Fits

A Thing Called Divine Fits

Spoon and Wolf Parade supergroup Divine Fits album cover art

Supergroups can often by surprisingly disappointing affairs, with the sum of their parts rarely if ever equaling their whole (only happening maybe twice with Cream and CSNY). We recently explored the best supergroups with our recent Top Ten Thursday list, and found that great super groups are truly in short supply.  The ones that seemingly work the best is when there is one clear alpha dog (i.e. Jack White’s projects, A Perfect Circle, Wild Flag) or if each of the musicians have a history of collaborating (i.e. Eric Clapton’s projects, CSNY, Monsters of Folk). Divine Fits, the latest indie supergroup trio consisting of Britt Daniel of Spoon, Dan Boeckner of Wolf Parade and Handsome Furs, and Sam Brown from New Bomb Turks, somewhat fits the alpha dog category with Britt Daniel of Spoon, but as seen on their debut, A Thing Called Divine Fits, Boeckner and Daniel pretty equally split lead duties for what is a tight well-produced 40 minute hybrid of new wave and rock ‘n’ roll; something both Spoon and Wolf Parade have explored masterfully.
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Top Ten Thursday: Super Supergroups

supergroup, super group, picture

In honor of the Divine Fits album dropping next week we decided to craft a list of the top 10 supergroups to form throughout the years.  What makes a supergroup is a little hard to define, so we decided to create just a few quick guidelines when discussing various groups eligibility for the list.  First, the group must consist of 3+ members, and those members must have had a previous notable project prior to the formation of the group.  This eliminates The Throne (Jay-Z and Kanye) and other notable duo collaborations.  In addition, the supergroup must have released a studio album, and not just performed together live and/or released solely live recordings.  We also eliminated outfits that might be termed more of a “collective” with a lot of rotating members (i.e. Broken Social Scene, New Pornographers), which made it ambiguous to determine the mindset of actually forming a cohesive group.  That is pretty much it.

With those guidelines, the stable of supergroups was a little thinner than we thought going into making this list.  Not many of the groups have even released more than one successful album.  Supergroups often burn hot but also burn very quickly.  Another issue we noticed is that when bringing together several ultra-influential members from disparate groups it appears difficult to gain a cohesive focus on the project at hand.  Often, the members seem either too overbearing when all combined, or sometimes too passive.  Either way, all the groups below have had some measure of success when combining their collective powers.  Enjoy, and as always let us know what we overlooked, missed, or overstepped our bounds.
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LxL Fest: 3 Days, 33 Acts, 1 Stage

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Fleetwood Mac Retro Review: Rumours

Fleetwood Mac

Rumours

45th anniversary Fleetwood Mac's Rumour album cover

We haven’t retro-reviewed anything for quite some time, so yesterday I went mining through some of the older albums I have been listening to decide what was worthy and interesting to write about. Then, I stumbled upon something new (Just Tell Me That You Want Me, the Fleetwood Mac tribute out in 2 weeks in honor of the band’s 45th anniversary), and I knew exactly what kind of old I wanted to review.
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