In music, as in life, love comes and goes. What seemed like a perfect blend of friendship and shared artistry can turn sour in less time than it takes to read this sentence. Whether through the always-popular "creative differences" or unspeakable tragedy, bands break up on a pretty constant basis. But,like Stephen King said, sometimes they come back.
Join us as we count down the Top 5 rock reunions, and be sure to let us know what we got wrong in the comments section below. Look for our followup, Top 5 Terrible Rock Reunions, later this week.
5. The Eagles
The Eagles made the list mostly for the sheer money-making power of their 1994 reunion. Glenn Frey, Don Henley, Joe Walsh, Don Felder and Timothy Schmit put aside the ridiculous drama that tore them apart in 1980 and cashed in with a tour (and live album) dubbed Hell Freezes Over, named after a quote given by the band's most famous member (Henley) about when the band might reunite.
And then: The Eagles fired Don Felder in 2001, prompting him to sue the group for $50 million. They settled out of court and continue to tour and record without him.
4. The Raincoats
Formed from the ashes of The Slits, The Raincoats became one of the defining acts of the post-punk movement with their debut album. Though their frenetic drummer Palmolive left the group shortly after their first record, the rest of the group recorded the followup Odyshape and two more albums before disbanding in 1984. While mostly forgotten by the music world at large, they had a famous fan in Nirvana's Kurt cobain, who wrote a touching tribute to the group in the liner notes of Incesticide, prompting DGC to reissue the band's ong out of print records. The group, minus Palmolive (who became a hare Krishna after leaving the band) were even slated to open for Nirvana during their Spring 1994 European tour. Sadly, Cobain's suicide cancelled those plans.
And then: The group released a reunion album, Looking in the Shadows in 1996. They continue to perform live, most notably at the 2012 incarnation of All Tomorrow's Parties, where they performed their debut album in its entirety.
3. Dinosaur Jr
After garnering a fair bit of critical praise for their first few albums, Dinosaur Jr founding member Lou Barlow left the group prior to the recording of their major label debut Green Mind. Singer/Guitarist J. Mascis soldiered on, performing most of the music on that album himself. Barlow went on to form the influential lo-fi band Sebadoh, and Dinosaur Jr disbanded after a couple more lackluster albums. Barlow and Mascis, alongside drummer Murph, reunited the classic lineup in 2005, releasing the critically-acclaimed album Beyond two years later.
And then: The trio have continued to tour and release albums. I Bet on Sky is due out later this year.
2. Mission of Burma
Under-appreciated in their time, Mission of Burma broke up just as they were gaining mainstream attention for their debut full-length Vs. One of the few bands to have legitimately disbanded without drama, the group stopped performing in 1983 due to singer/guitarist Roger Miller's battle with the hearing disorder tinnitus. They reformed in 2002, and Miller donned rifle range earphones to protect his hearing.
And then: The group have released a series of critically-acclaimed records, a rarity for any band after a 20 year absence. ONoffON, released in 2004, was near the top of many year-end best-of lists. Their most recent effort, Unsound, is due for release later this month.
1. The Pixies
One of the most influential alternative acts in history, The Pixies laid the groundwork for countless platinum-selling bands, notably Nirvana and Pearl Jam. With bassist Kim Deal frustrated by lead singer Frank Black's dismissal of her songwriting talents, the band was barely on speaking terms by the time Black disbanded them in 1993. Tensions were so high, in fact, Black notified his bandmates by fax machine. While Kim Deal went on to massive success with her band The Breeders, the rest of the group struggled to find an audience with their post-Pixies output. After dismissing the constant rumors of a reunion for over 10 years, the group finally reformed in mid-2004, playing sold-out shows across the world to larger audiences than they'd ever enjoyed during their initial run. In fact, the 2004 tour grossed approximately $14 million.
And then: Despite occasional rumblings about a new studio album, the group have thus far only released one song. Though they haven't officially broken up again, they haven't performed live since late 2011, and no tour is currently in the works.