10 Bands Who Should Have Stopped After One Album

When leaving us wanting more would've been enough.

Rough Trade

The maxim goes that you have your whole life to write your first album, and about six months to write your second. Thus, a sophomore slump can afflict bands and artists of all genres.

That, combined with all manner of other factors, can lead to disappointing follow ups to smash hit debuts. It’s for the artist to deal with, and if your second album doesn’t work out, start thinking about your third, your fourth, etc.

The music industry is a cruel business, and you need to role with the punches. But what if there’s another way?

What about those bands and artists who might have been better off calling it a day after that first release? Whether it’s due to shoddy workmanship on subsequent releases, or the sheer quality of that magical debut, some acts might just have done their legacy a big favour had they torn up the contract early doors in their careers.

This is purely speculative, of course, and there’s no way of saying how an early bath would have affected these musicians’ reputations. But there’s no shame in keeping the fans wanting more, and sometimes it might just be the best thing to do.

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Joshua H. Mills likes Milhouse Van Houten, Tom Waits, and A Confederacy Of Dunces. You can find his content at, and enjoy his 15 tweets @jharrymills