10 Bands Who Are Still Playing With Their Original Members

It’s amazing to see the amount of bands that just keep rocking out. In fact, you’ll be amazed to know which bands have been together with their original lineup. With that in mind, here are 10 active bands who been at it since day one from the oldest to the youngest. The list includes the members, album releases and, the year they formed. We’re talking about: no breaks, no lineup changes and no major hiatuses (sorry blink-182).

1)  U2

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  • Year of Formation: 1978.  Dublin, Ireland
  • Members: Bono, David ‘The Edge’ Evans, Adam Clayton  and Larry Mullen Jr.
  • Albums released to date: Boy, October, The Unforgettable Fire, The Joshua Tree, Rattle and Hum, Achtung Baby, Zooropa, Pop, All That You Can’t Leave Behind, How To Dismantle an Atomic Bomb, No Line on The Horizon, Songs of Innocence.

U2’s early sound was mostly post-punk. However, the band eventually grew into different influences from many different genres of popular music.

Within the first four years of the existence of U2, they signed with Island Records and released their first of thirteen studio albums with the debut of ‘Boy’ in 1980. Since 2010, U2 has sold more than 150 million records, placing them as one of the best-selling music artists in history.

The band is currently on their Innocent & Experience Tour who are now without their tour manager of 30 years, Dennis Sheehan, who passed away in May.

2)  Radiohead

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  • Year of Formation: 1985. Abingdon, Oxforshire, England
  • Members: Thom Yorke , Johnny Greenwood, Colin Greenwood, Ed O’Brien and Philip Seway
  • Albums released to date: Pablo Honey, The Bends, OK Computer, Amnesiac, Hail to the Thief, In Rainbows, The King of Lambs

Radiohead formed 30 years ago when they met while attending Abingdon School. Which was a private school for boys in Abingdon, Oxforshire, England. It was there they formed the band that originally was known as “On A Friday” referring to the bands rehearsal day in the school’s music room.

It was then in 1991 when the band got their break after taking time off to earn degrees in university. Record labels and producers became interested in the band, who signed a six-album recording contract with EMI A&R.

The label requested that the band should change their name thus, the name Radiohead was used after taking it from the song “Radio head” by “The Talking Heads”. Creep was their debut single in 1992 and it later appeared on their first album “Pablo Honey” in 1993.

3)   Sloan

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  • Year of Formation: 1991. Halifax, Nova Scotia
  • MembersChris Murphy, Patrick Pentland, Jay Ferguson, and Andrew Scott
  • Albums to date: 2 EPs Peppermint EP, Hit & Run EP, and 11 studio albums- Smeared, Twice Removed, One Chord to Another, Navy Blues, Between The Bridges, Pretty Together, Action Pact, Never Hear The End Of It, Parallel Day, The Double Cross, Commonwealth

After forming in 1991 when Chris Murphy and Andrew Scott met at the Nova Scotia College of Arts and Design, the band’s name came from the nickname of their friend, Jason Larson. Larson was originally called Slow One by his French-speaking boss and with the accent; it sounded like “Sloan’”.

When they released their first EP, the “Peppermint EP” in 1992, Larson was on the cover of the album after an agreement with the band. “Underwhelmed” was Sloan’s first single off their sophomore album “Smeared”. Since then, the band has released eleven LP’s, two EPs, a live album, a Greatest Hits album with more than 30 singles released to date.

The success and recognition of their albums (Twice Removed and Commonwealth, which peaked at #9 on the Billboard Heatseekers) has made them one of Canada’s best bands of all-time.

4)   Muse

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  • Year of Formation1994. Teignmouth, Devon, England
  • Members: Matthew Bellomy, Christopher Wolstenholme, Dominic Howard
  • Albums to date: Showbiz, Origin of Symmetry, Absolution, Black Holes and Revelations, The Resistance, The 2nd Law, Drones

Known for their energetic performances, the band got their first start at a local Battle of The Bands competition under the name “Rocket Baby Dolls”. They shocked the crowd by winning, and destroying their equipment as a part of their show. They spent a few years building a fan base that lead to the bands release of the EP “Showbiz” in 1998.

Most of their earlier songs dealt with introspective themes: relationships, social alienation and difficulties they encountered while trying to establish themselves in the music industry. With the release of their seventh album “Drones”, they have since released a new music video “Mercy” last month on the bands YouTube page.

Muse also confirmed that they will be performing at Lollapoolza Berlin on September 13th.

5)   Coldplay

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  • Year of Formation: 1996. London, England
  • Members: Chris Martin, Jonny Buckland, Guy Berryman, Will Chapman
  • Albums to date: Parachutes, A Rush of Blood to The Head, X & Y, Viva La Vida or Death and All His Friends, Mylo Xyloto, Ghost Stories

Formed by Chris Martin and Jonny Buckland during their orientation at University College London, Guy Berryman and Will Champion joined on afterwards.

The band originally went by the name ‘Pectoralz’ then ‘Starfish’; they renamed the band to Coldplay before releasing three EP’s: Safety, Brothers & Sisters, and Blue Room within the span of one year. Martin recruited long-time friend Phil Harvey as the manager, who is considered to be the fifth member by the band. They achieved fame with the release of the single “Yellow” off their debut album “Parachutes” in the summer of 2000. “X & Y” was the best-selling album worldwide in 2005 including the hits “Fix You”, “Talk”, and “Speed of Sound”.

Coldplay has gone on to win numerous awards in their 19-year existence that includes: eight Brit Awards, seven Grammy Awards, and five MTV Video Music Awards. Chris Martin announced late last year that band will be working on a seventh studio album “A Head Full of Dreams”, which could be the band’s final album.

6)   The Strokes

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  • Year of Formation: 1998. New York City, New York
  • Members: Julian Casablancas, Nick Nalensi, Albert Hammond Jr., Nikoali Fraiture and Fabrizo ‘Fab’ Moretti
    • Albums to date: Is This It, Room of Fire, First Impression of Earth and Angels, Comedown Machine

One of the many indie rock bands to hail from the US before the turn of the 21st century, The Strokes helped revive the garage rock movement since day one. While meeting and playing in school, Julian, Nick, Fab and late comers Albert and Nikoali would release their debut album with the record label RCA titled “Is This It” in 2001.

The album received critical acclaim from mainstream publications and was named album of the year by Entertainment Weekly and, Time Magazine. “Hard to Explain” was the band’s first single which ended up on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. Since their debut, The Strokes have made five-studio albums and winning six awards along the way from BRIT awards (Best International Newcomer)to NME awards (Band of The Year and Best Album).

In March of 2015, the band announced they will be performing at the British Summer Time: Hyde Park Festival later this month. This will mark the band’s first show in the UK in almost five years.

7) Broken Social Scene

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  • Year of Formation: 1999. Toronto, Ontario
  • Members: Kevin Drew and Brendan Canning (the core of the group), plus six-nineteen various artists in the Toronto area
  • Albums to date: Feel Good Lost, You Forgot It In People, Broken Social Scene and Forgiveness Rock Record

A band with a musical collective as few as six to as many as nineteen members, most of its members play in various groups and solo projects. The main core of Broken Social Scene is Kevin Drew and Brendan Canning.

Borken Social Scenes sound is a combination of all of its members’ respective musical projects from orchestrations of guitars, horns, woodwinds, violins and some well-known female vocalists (Emily Haines, Leslie Feist and Amy Millan). Since the release of their first single, Starsand Sons, the band refuses to be known as a supergroup. Claiming that in the indie scene, everyone is involved in more than one project.

On top of four-studio albums and numerous tours, Broken Social Scene also worked on film scores for various movies such as: Half Nelson, The Tracey Fragments and It’s Kind of A Funny Story

8) Kings of Leon

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  • Year of Formation: 1999. Nashville, Tennessee
  • Members: Caleb, Nathan, Jared and Matthew Followill
  • Albums to date: Youth and Young Manhood, Aha Shake Heartbreak, Because of The Times, Only By The Night, Come Around Sundown, Mechanical Bull

The three Followill brothers and their cousin Matthew, formed Kings of Leon in 1999. They named the band after their grandfather Leon.

The band’s first EP “The Holy Roller Novocain” was released in 2003 along with their debut album “Youth and Young Manhood”. The band received critical acclaim of their second album “Aha Shake Heartbreak” with “The Bucket” as the first single released by the band.

Since then, Kings of Leon founded their own record label company, Serpents and Snakes Records and a few awards at the 52nd Grammy Awards including: Record of The Year, Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals and Best Rock Song for “Use Somebody”.

9) Franz Ferdinand

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  • Year of Formation: 2002. Glasgow, Scotland
  • Members: Alex Kaparnos, Bob Hardy, Nick McCarthy, Paul Thomson
  • Albums to date: Franz Ferdinand, You Could Have It So Much Better, Tonight: Franz Ferdinand, Right Thoughts/Right Words/ Right Action

The band’s name was inspired by the Archduke Franz Ferdinand (whose assassination was the lead-up to WWI). The members of Franz Ferdinand played in various bands during the 1990’s.

Alex Kaparnos and Paul Thomson met at a party and played together since. Kaparnos taught Bob Hardy bass and Nick McCarthy was recruited after studying jazz bass in Germany. Their debut single ‘Take Me Out’ reached to the no.3 spot on the UK charts. After a heavy rotation of the songs music video, the bands self-titled album reached to no.32 on the Billboard 200 albums chart.

The band has progressed throughout the years with several Grammy nominations and taking home a NME Award for Best Track. Earlier this year, the band announced that they formed a superband with Sparks under the name FFS. They plan to release a studio album this summer titled “Johnny Delusional” with the latest single “Call Girl” up on the bands YouTube page.

10) Tokyo Police Club

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  • Year of Formation: 2005. Newmarket, Ontario
  • Members: David Monks, Graham Wright, Josh Hook and Greg Alsop
  • Albums to date: 2 EPs and 4 studio albums- A Lesson In Crime, Smith EP, Elephant Shell, Champ, Ten Songs, Forcefield

Tokyo Police Club formed a decade ago while playing for fun in a basement. They gained attention while playing at small shows throughout the Toronto area. Tokyo Police Club signed with the Toronto label Paper Bag Records in 2006. With the release of their first EP, “A Lesson in Crime”, the band appeared at Edgefest and the inaugural Osheaga lineup in that same year.

The band’s first single was “Nature of The Experiment”. In 2008, the band toured with Weezer along with Angels and Airwaves during the last few weeks of Weezer’s Trouble Maker tour. In that same year, they released their first album “Elephant Shell”.

Tokyo Police Club began to rise in the indie scene of Toronto when they released “10 Days, 10 Covers, and 10 Years”. A creative project from the band in which they recorded a new cover song from one of the last years, from 2001 to 2010.

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