Music is an ongoing process that is an ever-evolving pursuit for the people who compose it. As a band goes through the trials and tribulations of life, their art more often than not is a reflection of where they are at that moment. So what happens when that music is silenced?
While many artists have killer debut albums, it is always much trickier to have a final statement that wraps up your entire career. An artist's ability to put finishing touches on their discography involves creating songs that are both a departure from your roots while still being able to go toe-to-toe with your best work.
These are the prime examples of the fond farewells and the tearful sendoffs for some of rock's most celebrated artists. Whether it be through the artist's demise or through simple creative differences, all of the albums showcased here are where their story ends. Even if the musicians on this list may only be with us in spirit, their presence will always be felt through the music they have given us.
10. Thanks For The Dance - Leonard Cohen
Throughout his career, Leonard Cohen was constantly praised in rock circles for his emotionally-stirring lyrics. While there have been countless rock love songs, Cohen was one of the few "rockstars" that truly understood the power of love's sting.
As we lost him in 2016, fans were met with You Want it Darker, a record that was a sort of sonic epitaph that Cohen wrote as he grew acceptance towards his death. However, Thanks for the Dance is the posthumous goodbye to the Cohen that we have gotten to know throughout the years.
Throughout its half-hour runtime, this record compiles bits of Cohen's spoken word poetry interspersed with music written by his son Adam. These songs show a man who is bit weather-beaten by love like on the cautionary tale "Happens to the Heart." The emotional rollercoaster continues through "The Night of Santiago," where Cohen describes a romantic rendezvous inspired by the work of the poet Lorca. Instead of coming off as a cheap posthumous cash-in, Thanks for the Dance is some of the most gripping music to come from Cohen's discography. You Want it Darker was farewell to Cohen the man, but Thanks for the Dance is the real goodbye from Cohen the lover.