THE FABLED SOPHOMORE SLUMP

All this jawin’ on the comments section of my GUN CLUB post last week got me thinking about the much-discussed “sophomore slump”, a condition endemic to baseball, television seasons, film directorial follow-ups and of course to rock and roll albums. I figured it might make a great comment-starter to list some big sophomore slumps – records that alienated audiences, lost fans, disturbed critics, or perhaps just annoyed me and no one else. There is of course the opposite phenomenon, which is nearly as prevalent. That’s the band with the good or mediocre debut who then goes on to up the ante considerably the second time around, and record a disc much better than its predecessor. I have a few examples of those as well, though I didn’t think too much about either category, hoping that any readers of this site could do the thinking for me. Let the kerfuffles begin.

CLASSIC SOPHOMORE SLUMPS


Masterpiece debut album/Disappointing Follow Up

TELEVISION – “Marquee Moon” / “Adventure”
THE GUN CLUB – “Fire Of Love” / “Miami”
THE DREAM SYNDICATE – “The Days of Wine and Roses” / “The Medicine Show”
COME – “Eleven: Eleven” / “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”
GIBSON BROS – “Big Pine Boogie” / “Dedicated Fool”
CIRCLE JERKS – “Group Sex” / “Wild In The Streets”
PINK FLOYD – “Piper At The Gates of Dawn” / “A Saucerful of Secrets”
UNION CARBIDE PRODUCTIONS – “In The Air Tonight” / “Financially Dissatisfied, Philosophically Trying”
THE GORDONS – “The Gordons” / “Volume Two”
ROYAL TRUX – “Royal Trux” / “Twin Infinitives”
BUZZCOCKS – “Another Music In a Different Kitchen” / “Love Bites”

BANDS THAT BEAT THE SLUMP & EVEN TOPPED THEMSELVES

Debut Album/Superior Follow Up

BIG STAR – “#1 Record / “Radio City”
THE STOOGES – “The Stooges” / “Funhouse”
NEIL YOUNG – “Neil Young” / “Everybody Knows This is Nowhere”
DINOSAUR (JR.) – “Dinosaur” / “You’re Living All Over Me”
LAZY COWGIRLS – “Lazy Cowgirls” / “Tapping The Source”
SUPERCHARGER – “Supercharger” / “Goes Way Out!”

CHEATER SLICKS
– “On Your Knees” / “Whiskey”

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