The 10 Best Albums by Artists Going Solo

Albums by Artists going Solo

Editor’s Note: This list was originally released in 2012. With the release of new David Gilmour (Pink Floyd), Keith Richards (Rolling Stones), and Chris Baio (Vampire Weekend) records, we thought we would revisit one of our favorite lists: our 10 favorite albums by artists that go solo.

In honor of one of our absolute favorites, Jack White, announcing the release of his first solo album Blunderbuss, we thought it might be fun to do a list of the finest solo records from people who reigned from well-known groups/bands. We decided on a couple guidelines for this category: the artist could not have had a solo career before the band (i.e. Panda Bear of Animal Collective), and it had to be a recognizable band (and not just some college garage band). We also decided it had to be a true solo project and not just a side project (i.e. McCartney in Wings, Jack White in fifty other bands not named the White Stripes).

10. Q-Tip-Amplified

Q-Tip Amplified album cover art

Jazz rap trio A Tribe Called Quest was unmistakably one-of-a-kind in the early 90s, and Q-Tip no doubt led that charge. His debut solo album, Amplified is fast, calm, and nearly flawless, if it wasn’t for that horrendous Korn guestspot on “End of Times” (it was the late 90s after all).
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LxListening: Cleaning Up

LxL_LxListening_900x300mr-clean

With our “End of the Year” lists now completely wrapped-up for 2013, I can’t help but feel like a few acts were unrightfully snubbed completely from our artists, albums, and songs lists. This is natural since we clearly can’t just list everything we like, and with three of us voting, we also won’t all be voting on the exact same things. So for this week’s LxListening I thought I would list some of my honorable mentions from 2013 that didn’t get much pub from us in our end of the year lists, but are still being consistently played by myself. So without further ado, in no particular order, here is my attempt to clean up some of my list misses from 2013:

King Khan and the Shrines – “Born To Die”

King Khan and the Shrines are quite an interesting and eclectic bunch. Their 2013 effort Idle No More seems to be their best attempt at imitating fellow contemporaries and friends The Black Lips. Although the album does have some down spots here and there, it also has some gems such as this opening track to the album here.
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Top Ten Live Acts of 2013

Paul McCartney - best live act of 2013

This is one of my favorite things to write every year, as we get to look back at all the great shows we attended this year. While we no doubt love listening to music in our cars, at work, or with friends, undoubtedly the preferred method remains live music, as it is something that will never go away. One last quick disclaimer: we are only able to see so many shows between the three of us, and not all three of us went to each of these shows, so of course this list is a bit flawed. But with that note aside, our ten favorite live acts.
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LxListening: Rapid Fire Album Reviews

charlie xcx, baths, ghost face killah, savages, deerhunter, new album, review, new music, 2013

With the barrage of great music 2013 has offered up thus far, we at LxL are struggling to keep up with everything we feel we should be touching on. Enter our first mid-week entry of LxListening, and a new concept behind it: Rapid Fire Album Reviews. Granted, all of the albums listed below should be warranted their own full review, but three men at one post a day can only accomplish so much. So here we are in an effort to try and not let some of this springs most dominant releases slip through the cracks. If you haven’t already heard these, I urge you to give the following albums a listen:

 

Savages – Silence Yourself
Savages, album cover, Silence Yourself
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Ghostface Killah Show Review: 2720 Cherokee

Ghostface Killah
2720 Cherokee
St. Louis, MO
4/27/2013

Ghostface Killah, live, st louis

Probably more than any other Wu-Tang member, Ghostface Killah has a flair for the dramatic in his intricate storytelling.  He likes his albums to have a very natural first, second and third act, and the same can certainly be said of his live show.  I’m going to lay the groundwork for what transpired Saturday night, but want to let Todd jump in at the end for some further thoughts, since I had the pleasure of attending a show with him for the first time in what seems like years.
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LxListening: The Man With The Iron Trax

The Man With The Iron Fists, kung fu, rza, russell
crowe, movie, quentin tarantino Two weeks from today will
mark the glorious directorial debut of Wu-Tangs one and only RZA.
November 2nd, we will be hit hard by one of the most over the top
kung fu movies to be released in the US in many years,
The Man With the Iron Fists. Produced by
Quentin Tarantino and written by Eli Roth and RZA, it has an
instant draw if not only marked purely by curiosity. As over the
top as it comes off in the trailer, I can only imagine how
ridiculously awesome the entire hour and a half will be. Although
RZA is certainly no stranger to the film world, this is the first
time he has written or directed anything. The fact that it was
co-written by Eli Roth ensures maximum blood and gore. It should be
a real eye gauger. Perhaps the biggest bonus you get with having
RZA so heavily involved with a movie is that you are graced with a
killer soundtrack, and judging by the album’s full track list that
is exactly what we have here:

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G.O.O.D. Music Review Royale: Cruel Expectations

G.O.O.D. Music

Cruel Summer

Kanye West's G.O.O.D. Music Cruel Summer Album Cover Art

Arguably the most anticipated release of the summer releases with one of the most unfitting times – who releases an album called Cruel Summer with four days left in summer? Kanye does, a man with clearly no regard for the seasons, and an ever-increasing ego to boot. People often get driven wild by Kanye’s egomaniacal antics and proclamations about being the greatest thing since Jesus Christ or sliced bread, but what goes wrong with Kanye’s G.O.O.D. music  compilation album, Cruel Summer, is Ye passing his ego onto his friends and believing if they hang with him, they must be great enough to stunt as well. What results is an album as inconsistent as the rappers Kanye has accrued.
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