Gavan Reilly's Portfolio writings, ramblings, mumblings

Whatever Happened To… the Britpop bands?

Gav Reilly takes a look at where the main players in Britpop disappeared to…

Blur went weird. Graham Coxon left in 2001, and had a successful solo career (notably the great single ‘Freaking Out’); Damon Albarn lost his hair, went to Mali and made a CD, came back, bought a sampler and started Gorillaz; Alex James and the other one are bumming around waiting for Damon to call them.

Oasis brought out three mediocre albums, got divorced, remarried, settled down, stopped drinking, and brought out a decent album again, a full ten years on, in Don’t Believe The Truth. But they’re talking to Blur again.

Suede bummed around, had one more successful single in ‘She’s in Fashion’ in 1999, brought out a singles collection in 2004, and haven’t contributed to the public everyday life much since.

The Charlatans did nothing but destroy Slane in 2002 after Nickleback had got the crowd going. Brought out a couple of singles last year that made numbers 23 and 24 in the charts. Nobody really cares.

Elastica became less popular once frontwoman Justine Frischmann stopped dating Damon Albarn. Threw in the towel in 2001 after their second album The Menace went down like a lead balloon the year before. Frischmann now presents an interior design programme on BBC 3.

Kula Shaker came back with their second album Peasants, Pigs and Astronauts in 1999 which didn’t nearly match the success of K. Their Greatest Hits came out in 2002. Keyboardist Jay Darlington plays with Oasis now, and singer Crispian Mills is with The Jeevas, who are bizarrely big in Japan.

Radiohead followed up their masterpiece The Bends in 1995 with another one, OK Computer in 1997, regularly voted the best album ever. Then went weird with Kid A, Amnesiac and hit form again with Hail To The Thief in 2003. Currently recording.

Supergrass had hit albums with In It For The Money, Supergrass, Life On Other Planets and again this August with Road to Rouen, marking a more mature sound for the band that some critics are having trouble digesting.

Menswear (remember them? They were the first ever band to appear on Top of the Pops before ever releasing, with ‘I’ll Manage Somehow’) followed up their debut album Nuisance and a sensational Glastonbury in 1995 with their second album Hay Tiempo! in 1998 which due to their waning popularity was only available in Japan. Guitarist Simon White is now manager of Bloc Party while another, Chris Gentry, manages up-and-coming band The Rumours.