The Afghan Whigs are an American soul-influenced alternative rock band of the 1990s. While they achieved moderate success, Rolling Stone described the band as spending “the bulk of their career on the brink of stardom”—they’ve “never quite broken beyond a substantial legion of devotees enamored of their thinly veiled sleaze.”
Greg Dulli (vocals, rhythm guitar), Rick McCollum (lead guitar), John Curley (bass), and Steve Earle (drums — not to be confused with country musician Steve Earle) formed the band in Cincinnati in 1986. Their 1988 debut album Big Top Halloween on their independent record label called Ultrasuede created a buzz in the independent music community, and the band soon signed to Sub Pop of Seattle in 1989, the first non-local band to do so. In 1990, Up in It was released; the blistering pace and yowling, effects-heavy guitars on tracks like “White Trash Party” gave no hint of the stylistic about-face to come. With the critically acclaimed 1992 album Congregation and a covers EP, Uptown Avondale, the Whigs adopted what became their signature sound: mid-tempo songs in minor keys complemented by gloomy angst-ridden lyrics.
The Afghan Whigs then signed to a major label, Elektra Records, and released another critically acclaimed album, Gentlemen that failed to break the band into the mainstream, though it spawned the minor hits “Debonair” and “Gentlemen”. They contributed “Fountain and Fairfax” to the soundtrack for the television series My So-Called Life in 1994.
For the next few years, despite personnel problems interfering with recording and touring, the band released two more albums – Black Love in 1996 (with Paul Buchignani taking over drumming duties) and 1965 in…
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- No tour dates scheduled at this time.