RANKED! 9 Longest Surviving Bands That Still Turn Out Albums
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Bands tend to age about 10 times faster than people. After all, how long could you stand someone if you spent most of the year in a cramped bus inhaling each other’s Taco Bell farts? Touring ages you, and fast. It’s not surprising that bands go on hiatus, see lineup changes, and announce breakups all the time.
That’s what makes these bands so impressive. These are some truly committed and possibly insane musicians who have put up with each other for decades. Not only that, but they’re still releasing albums together.
While some bands come and go, these ones have made a commitment. Possibly for life.
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Green Day (Since 1986)
Punks from the East Bay in California, Green Day started as a brash, early '90s punk group that seemed to fit right in with their peers. However, the group has reinvented itself a couple times since then and now has Grammys and an opera to its name. Meanwhile, the albums keep coming. Revolution Radio was the most recent, released in 2016.
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Radiohead (Since 1985)
Radiohead is one of the more unlikely success stories in rock. The group has continuously found new ways to evolve, with each album seemingly completely unique. It says a lot that the band can release challenging and complex music that continues to grow and change. The group hasn't let up for almost 35 years. A Moon Shaped Pool is their latest album, released in 2016.
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NOFX (Since 1983)
Another group of California punks, NOFX is a band you can't take too seriously. Despite Fat Mike and company's easy-going approach to album names (White Trash, Two Heebs and a Bean) and live shows, they've shown some serious staying power as a hard-partying punk band of 36 years. Even more impressive, the band has never gone to a major label. The band's latest release was 2016's First Ditch Effort.
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Metallica (Since 1981)
The third best-selling band since they started tracking in 1991, Metallica's members are the godfathers of thrash metal. They played a pivotal role in bringing metal to the masses. While things got dicey for a while, the band is still going strong three decades in and released their tenth album Hardwired...to Self-Destruct a couple years back.
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Bad Religion (Since 1979)
An outspoken political punk group from Cali...seriously, is there something in the water? Bad Religion excels at releasing catchy, pointed songs that have criticized consumerism ("21st Century (Digital Boy)") and endorsed a pro-choice ideology ("Operation Rescue"). The band's politics never get in the way of catchy songs or their punk ethos, and thus they've been steadily rocking it for 40 years. They released True North in 2013.
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U2 (Since 1978)
Bono, his sunglasses, and the rest of U2 have been a staple in the music industry for over 40 years. The band has seen some ups (they played a Super Bowl) and downs (forcing their album onto every iPhone in America) but the trio has continued selling out stadiums and making hits. Their latest release was 2017's Songs of Experience.
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Aerosmith (Since 1970)
These guys weren't kidding when they said they "I Don't Want to Miss a Thing." The Boston foursome somehow lived through some of the hardest partying this side of Ozzy Osborne. Even more impressive, the band is the best-selling American rock band of all time, moving over 150 million albums. They haven't slowed down at all and are currently playing a Las Vegas residency and mulling over a new album.
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ZZ Top (Since 1969)
The iconic beards and sunglasses have most definitely held up through 50 years of shows. The music hasn't aged too badly, either, as ZZ Top continues to pump out blues-heavy rock at a steady pace. This band has been around for so long, they were inducted to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame the same year as Janet Jackson's Super Bowl performance (2004). Not too shabby.
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The Rolling Stones (Since 1962)
For 57 years, the Stones have strutted the stage. Mick Jagger and Keith Richards have shown that hard partying and rock and roll can make you live forever (so far). The group has just announced they are working on new material and a massive North American tour. The band has clearly found the fountain of youth and will outlast us all.
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