Sometimes it doesn’t take much to push you one way or the other when you’re on the fence about a band. Maybe you’ve heard a song or two online and they sound pretty good, but you’re unsure whether or not to put in that extra effort and download an album, see a show, or investigate further. So you click on a link to find out a bit more about them. In these cases, a photo can make all the difference.
Band photography is inherently pretentious — a group of dudes (or ladiez!) standing around trying to convey how seriously they feel about their music with terrible facial expressions. Or even worse, bands can go for a wacky, “funny” vibe that almost never works.
On occasion, band photography can surpass its limited genre and turn into something interesting and even artistic. Annie Liebovitz and the like create iconic images that have become almost as much a part of the rock and roll canon as the music itself (think: the cover of Born to Run, U2 in the desert, the early photos of the Rolling Stones, Iggy Pop, Janis Joplin & Jim Morrison). Usually, though, especially with today’s generation of twee, lo-fi, shoe-gazing indie rockers, the pictures just end up looking ridiculous. Which makes the band’s songs seem worse by association.
After the jump, get ready to cross some bands off your list.
Now, we’re only dealing with bands that we might be on the fence about. We’re not looking at pictures of like, Creed or Train or whatever, because there’s no doubt those are horrible bands and so who cares if they look as douchey as they sound (they do).