Here is a list of bands with crazy large lineups that boggle the mind and challenge the laws of physics! These bands clearly didn’t think the classic 3-piece band formation was good enough for them. Oddly, a disproportionate number of these bands are indie folk bands and come from the USA or Canada.
1. Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros
With between 10 and 15 members, depending on the day, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros boast one crazy large lineup! Formed in L.A. back in 2007, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros have been churning out indie folk tunes with the same regularity and tenacity with which Donald Trump devours hamburgers. And every member of their massive lineup is 100% essential! Check out their performance on the NPR Tiny Desk Concert series; they barely fit into the space! –
2. Arcade Fire
While Arcade Fire only has a meagre 7 members, each one of them counts for at least 4 people because that’s the minimum number of instruments each member plays. One member of the band plays 10 instruments! If we assume an average of 6 instruments per band member then that’s 42 band members…or something.
While having only 7 permanent members, Arcade Fire typically tours with 10 or more musicians in order to replicate their instrument laden recordings in a live setting. And to be honest it sometimes looks like they’ve got a substitute bench for when the more competent member wants a breather.
3. The New Pornographers
Like Arcade Fire, The New Pornographers hail from Canada. The band features an 8 person lineup and ropes in a ninth when touring. Called a ‘supergroup’ by some, we prefer to think of The New Pornographers as a mid-life crisis group comprised of competent, albeit uninspired, indie musicians.
4. The Polyphonic Spree
With a whooping 20 members, The Polyphonic Spree might be annoying as heck but they do have one crazy large lineup! I think that’s enough said about The Polyphonic Spree…
5. I’m From Barcelona
Imagine going to play a gig and your band is bigger than the audience. With 28 members, this must have been a real danger for I’m From Barcelona during the early days. Yet despite the staggering array of musicians involved, I’m From Barcelona continues to produce…yup, you guessed it…mediocre indie rock. Apparently size isn’t everything.
Nope, I’m not talking about the Dutch rapper Typhoon, he’s just one person. I’m talking about the Oregon-based, 11-piece indie folk band. The band includes 2 drummers, 2 trumpets, and 2 violins and a lot more. Wouldn’t one of each be enough??
The prize for biggest band goes to…I’m From Barcelona! Know a band with more than 28 members? Share the name in the comments section below.