Home Awesome 64 “I Wonder What Happened To…” Bands From The 2000s

64 “I Wonder What Happened To…” Bands From The 2000s


The definitive list of post-2000 artists who well and truly spent their fifteen minutes of fame: who are still going? Who called it a day? Who haven’t you even thought about since 2004?

1. Alphabeat

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=t3RjCiq1ICY. youtube.com / Via EMI

Because you can never have enough cheeky Scandinavian pop. But you can, it seems, have too much Alphabeat, who haven’t had a knock-out hit since ‘Boyfriend’.

2. The Avalanches

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=wpqm-05R2Jk. youtube.com / Via XL Recordings

One of the great mysteries of Australian music – and let’s face it, that would be a kick-ass cop show – the Avalanches went and released one of the great records of the 21st Century with ‘Since I Left You’, which contained over 3,000 samples. They became a cult hit, and are still working on the follow-up. Darren Seltmann left the group this year, but record label Modular told fans to “Stay tuned” for new music.

3. Badly Drawn Boy

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=RPVAipmV7jY. youtube.com / Via XL Recordings

The 2000 winner of the Mercury Music Prize, Badly Drawn Boy will forever be synonymous with onstage controversy and the About A Boy soundtrack. Still releasing music to significantly less hype.

4. Basement Jaxx

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=X_n1FHX3mBw. youtube.com / Via Astralwerks

Formerly the biggest thing in UK dance, Glasto headliners and BRIT award winners, the Jaxx haven’t been lazy since their last big hit, 2009’s ‘Raindrops’. They reworked their back-catalogue with an orchestra, scored movie Attack the Block and are releasing seventh effort ‘Junto’ this August. Last year’s singles ‘Back 2 The Wild’ and ‘What A Difference Your Love Makes’ both flopped, and won’t be included on the new record.

5. Basshunter

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=IgFwiCApH7E. youtube.com / Via Hard2Beat Records

Eurodancer Jonas Altberg (don’t you wish he was called something sillier?) has been busy since dropping ‘Now You’re Gone’ and ‘All I Ever Wanted’, which charted at numbers 1 and 2 in the UK respectively, in 2008. He’s been charged with sexual assault, performed on T4 on the Beach, been on Big Brother and he released his latest effort, ‘Calling Time’ last year.

6. Daniel Bedingfield

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=b4eMyOzD9UI. youtube.com / Via Polydor

Garage-pop sensation and part one of our Bedingfield family extravaganza, Daniel’s still going strong, having judged the New Zealand version of X Factor last year.

7. Natasha Bedingfield

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=iWako3_ENlk. youtube.com / Via Sony

Bedingfield the Younger had just about as many hits as her big brother, and is still writing music (as she hints at in a lot of her songs). In 2012, VH1 surprisingly ranked Bedingfield No. 66 on the list of 100 Greatest Women in Music.

8. Dane Bowers

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=Qf87MJcWZQI. youtube.com / Via Ice Cream Records

Former friend of Victoria Beckham and Jordan’s ex, Dane Bowers infamously enjoyed a fame resurgence upon entering the Big Brother house. Since then, he’s become a footballer in the Newport and District League, and was last year allegedly arrested for a bust-up at Butlins. Probably not the stardom he was hoping for when he left Another Level in 2000.

9. The Bravery

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=O8vzbezVru4. youtube.com / Via The Island Def Jam Music Group

Synth-pop/indie collective who were tipped for huge things. Didn’t fulfill promises, but did start a feud with the Killers.

10. Brother (later Viva Brother)

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=WXQOfXkLY_s. youtube.com / Via Acid Love

Morrissey-loving rascals who said they’d be the biggest band in the world in two years. Last heard, they split up, blaming the NME’s huge pressure on them (who to be fair, only printed their own grand ambitions). Frontman Lee Newell’s now apparently in a synth-pop boyband, Lovelife. Lovelife are yet to claim they’ll be the biggest band in the world.

11. Blu Cantrell

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=wfTC2o05OEw. youtube.com / Via Arista Records

Hit number one in 2003, with a video that looked like a focus group brainstorming the phrase, “R&B”. Subsequently nominated for some Grammy’s; Sean Paul lived on, Blu Cantrell did not.

12. Corinne Bailey Rae

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=ymeoUU1mejc. youtube.com / Via EMI

The first album was huge, the second less so, but still Mercury-nominated. Apparently still working on new material. Which should be good.

13. The Coral

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=KErHjXpsfwA. youtube.com / Via Deltasonic Records

Lovely indie troupe who had a few hits, but really caught imagination with their self-titled debut record. They lasted until 2012, when guitarist Bill Ryder-Jones left. He’s most recently releasing solo stuff and playing guitar with the Arctic Monkeys, both live and on ‘AM’ slow-burner, ‘Fireside’.

14. Craig David

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=ABuWphlnZ1A. youtube.com / Via Warner Bros.

Twice Grammy, twelve time BRIT-nominated Craig David seemed to have his career ruined by Bo Selecta. He’s releasing an album this year though apparently, after a world tour ended last year.

15. CSS

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=7agPOt1XZz8. youtube.com / Via Trama

Brazilian New ravers named after a Beyonce quotation, and fronted by a woman called “Lovefoxxx”, CSS were championed by the NME and given considerable Radio 1 airplay when they released ‘Let’s Make Love And Listen To Death From Above’. They scored a couple of minor hits with hipster kids, but critical appeal soon wavered. They released an album last year to little attention.

16. Dido

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=j-fWDrZSiZs. youtube.com / Via Sony

Seriously, what happened to Dido? She had 34,000,000 sales of her first two records, but just 100,000 in the UK of latest effort, ‘Girl Who Got Away’. Most recently played with Eminem at Reading.

17. Daley

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=MNo-L4-2P0w. youtube.com / Via Universal

He’s friends with Damon Albarn, a Gorillaz collaborator, and boasts Jessie J on his first big single, but nobody at Daley’s record company thought to send his debut album to radio stations. February release ‘Days + Nights’ featured Pharrell, Bernard Butler and The Weeknd producer Illangelo, but failed to chart.

18. The Darkness

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=sRYNYb30nxU. youtube.com / Via Atlantic Records

Few people actually thought they were really rock and roll, so it’s ironic that cocaine and booze ripped the Darkness apart. A couple of years ago though, they reunited to release a third record, ‘Hot Cakes’.

19. Estelle

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=Ic5vxw3eijY. youtube.com / Via WMG

Reportedly signed to her label because she was mates with John Legend, which explains how Estelle enlisted Kanye West on her only smash hit. Still working away though, and was nominated for a Grammy last year.

20. The Feeling

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=KMMO4Nwidq0. youtube.com / Via Island Records

Pop-rockers whose popularity waned after the hit debut. One-time Coachella players last year headlined Rochdale’s Feel Good Festival.

21. Nelly Furtado

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=PLolag3YSYU. youtube.com / Via Interscope Records

Formerly Timbaland’s go-to female vocalist, Nelly Furtado has sold 20 million records but failed to hit the top ten in the UK since 2006. Her next album will apparently be her last with her record label, but if it isn’t produced by Timbaland, will we notice it over here?

22. Goldfrapp

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=uco-2V4ytYQ. youtube.com / Via EMI

Chameleonic ambient/dance duo best known for ‘Ooh La La’, Goldfrapp are still evolving into the 2010s, having released an album last year. Not that many people party to them anymore. Did people party to them originally? Never mind, it paints a picture.

23. David Gray

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=zI_SBAkdKzc. youtube.com / Via IHT

Believe it or not, Gray’s still going and is releasing an album next month. He’ll still always be known for ‘Babylon’, though.

24. Hard-Fi

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=fGardUiWjR4. youtube.com / Via Warner Bros.

Those Carling-doused, football-soundtracking, suburban, working class boys with the famous album covers: the first was great, the second appalling. Radio 1 hyped up ‘Once Upon A Time In The West’, but unfortunately it didn’t deliver like ‘Stars of CCTV’ did. Third record ‘Killer Sounds’ flopped.

25. The Hoosiers

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=OeNNfS0ZTnU. youtube.com / Via Sony

Hard not to fall in love with the silly enthusiasm of the Hoosiers, even if you don’t like the music; and who can resist a band led by a Ben Stiller lookalike? The public certainly could. The first album was a surprise hit, but the second – aided with lead single, ‘Choices’, which was later turned into a 40-minute epic in attempt at a Guinness World Record – was so poorly received, the band re-released it the year after with a new title, and three more songs. Poor Hoosiers.

26. Mr Hudson

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=UkZt7tZl2AE. youtube.com / Via Mercury Records

Once performed as “Mr Hudson and the Library”, before becoming Kanye West’s best mate during his auto-tune phase. Just like Kid Cudi, Estelle and Lupe Fiasco before him though, Hudson’s struggled to score hits post-West.

27. Jamelia

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=CPQ_PnRPOXw. youtube.com / Via EMI

R&B starlet who amusingly faced an ex who’d sold stories about her in Buzzcocks’s Identity Parade, Jamelia’s now a Loose Woman.

28. Jet

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=tuK6n2Lkza0. youtube.com / Via WMG

The ‘Are You Gonna Be My Girl’ hitmakers split up in 2012. Probably not helped by a Pitchfork review that consisted solely of a video of a monkey urinating in its own mouth.

29. Jack Johnson

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=seZMOTGCDag. youtube.com / Via Universal

So easy-going he was practically horizontal, Jack Johnson earned a few fans with 2005 breakthrough record ‘Between Dreams’ but has had a more quiet relationship with radio since. His last effort was released last year though; it’s bizarre to imagine that he had a number one album as recently as 2010.

30. David Jordan

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=dOt6zVvs1qI. youtube.com / Via ZZT

Barnet bloke who hit number four in the charts, and was never heard from again. Currently playing Michael Jackson in the Thriller Live Musical.

31. Just Jack

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=H9RunljdHow. youtube.com / Via Orchard Music

He was a cheeky rapper with a hit that mocked celebrity culture, but Just Jack wasn’t to be the next Eminem. In fact, he’s not released a song for five years.

32. Lemar

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=OrXB31Znxpk. youtube.com / Via Sony

Fame Academy runner-up (remember that show? Don’t worry, we’ll kill David Sneddon with this stone too), Lemar was reasonably popular in the charts before taking a bit of dip; the lead single of his last album reached #158 in the UK. Sneddon though – joked at for not doing as well as Lemar – has written songs for Lana Del Rey, Hurts, Nicole Scherzinger and Olly Murs. Surprisingly decent turnaround for such a flop of a pop career.

33. Leona Lewis

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=7_weSk0BonM. youtube.com / Via Syco Music

After ‘Bleeding Love’, it suddenly seemed like the X Factor had produced an A-list popstar at last. Lewis contributed a song to the Avatar soundtrack, and released two albums of warbling ballads before fighting the power and asking Simon Cowell to do dance tracks. Third album disappointingly couldn’t beat newbie Jake Bugg to number one. A Christmas album followed. Cowell’s more bothered by One Direction these days.

34. Limp Bizkit

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=RYnFIRc0k6E. youtube.com / Via Interscope Records

Nu-metallers who became really big with the older, middle-class kind of music buyer who could relate to digestive biscuits dissolving in their tea (probably). Limp Bizkit split in 2005, came back in 2009 and have are releasing another record soon. More amazingly, they’ve sold 40 million albums. That’s a lot of angry brew-drinkers.

35. Madcon

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=8YVrnLa8V8M. youtube.com / Via Bonnier Amigo Music

A 2008 summer smash, Norwegian duo Madcon actually waited sixteen years for a hit that big. They might be waiting another sixteen for their next, but last year they worked with Kelly Rowland, Snoop Lion and Rick Ross.

36. The Magic Numbers

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=MTrWbcluI_4. youtube.com / Via EMI

Quirky sibling-heavy indie quartet who last released a record four years ago. Received a fair amount of airplay at their hype, though.

37. Katie Melua

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=27RVIgW7L8c. youtube.com / Via Dramatico Music

Georgian-British songstress who sold nearly two million records in the first six months of releasing her debut, but was maligned by nearly anyone – including even Amy Winehouse – for being boring. Still working with Mike Batt of Wombles fame, and apparently worth £12 million.

38. Daniel Merriweather

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=o1NCmDYeymo. youtube.com / Via Sony

Daniel Merriweather performed at the Brits with Mark Ronson, and even boasted an Adele guest spot on his album. But where’s he now? Ronson’s interest in him has certainly cooled, and he’s not had a hit since ‘Red’, which felt at the time, like his breakthrough.

39. Mika

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=vzoYgasvKdo. youtube.com / Via Casablanca Records

Debut album ‘Life In Cartoon Motion’ was a huge hit for Mika, spawning singles a-plenty and cementing him as a household name. These days, he’s more famous in Europe though – did you know he worked with Pharrell? No, me neither – and as recently as 2012, he came out as gay. New album out next year.

40. Christina Milian

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=XVBhTWNDuyY. youtube.com / Via Def Jam Records

Early 00s R&B singer Christina Milian hasn’t released a record since 2006, which actually, seems way more recent than you probably thought. She has however been in three movies since then – one of them straight-to-DVD – appeared on CSI and competed on Dancing With The Stars.

41. Samantha Mumba

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=gQMV1iQ-Xsc. youtube.com / Via Polydor

Released one album in 2000 but took until 2011 to confirm her retirement from music, to focus on acting.

42. Kate Nash

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=ryH5cga0yUI. youtube.com / Via Polydor

Lily Allen-like songstress who dated the Cribs’ Ryan Jarman, the lingering legacy of Kate Nash is recognising “that song” whenever you see the Inbetweeners repeats on E4. She released another album last year, but she’s fallen out of favour with radio.

43. New Young Pony Club

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=-shACMaxUb0. youtube.com / Via Modular Records

Now just called NYPC, former NME Cool Listee Tahita Bulmer and her band became a hipster hit in 2006, but fizzled out, supporting Katy Perry in 2011 and releasing two follow-ups to the acclaimed debut, ‘Fantastic Playroom’, that failed to chart in the top 100.

44. Colby O’Donis

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=2Abk1jAONjw. Via Interscope Records

Had a slot on Lady Gaga’s first single. One of them became the biggest popstar in the world, one sunk without a trace.

45. OK Go

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=dTAAsCNK7RA. youtube.com / Via EMI

What happened to the treadmill band, eh? Well they released a few more cool videos for a start. They’re releasing another effort later this year though, so stay tuned for more YouTube madness.

46. The Ordinary Boys

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=N24aMC4H_7k. youtube.com / Via Popworld, Channel 4

A poppy indie band first tipped by the BBC in 2004 for big things, alongside the likes of Franz Ferdinand and McFly. Some may argue they were a cross between the two, but it’s not like anyone remembers any of the songs over Preston’s Never Mind the Buzzcocks walkout.

47. Jack Penate

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=uFQDsH3DRKo. Via XL Recordings

Jack Penate’s first album was an XFM and Radio 1 favourite. He was mates with Adele. The second record was fantastic without knocking critics off their chairs. But what’s he doing, five years down the line? Answers on a postcard, please.

48. Peter, Bjorn & John

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=51V1VMkuyx0. youtube.com / Via Wichita

Remember these guys? As well as having a lifetime discount at Homebase and the least creative band name since “The Music”, Peter, Bjorn and John also boast production credits for the likes of Lykke Li in recent years, as well a few more albums. A one-hit wonder, maybe, but probably more hard-working than you thought.

49. Daniel Powter

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=gH476CxJxfg. youtube.com / Via Warner Bros.

Released one of the biggest songs of 2005 but never anything again, Daniel Powter actually did release other songs, but none of them charted in the top 50 either side of the Atlantic. He’s still going, despite what must be a depressing career trajectory.

50. The Rapture

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=6HP04nfUi4g. youtube.com / Via DFA

New York indie-dancers who took the world by storm with ‘House of Jealous Lovers’, later providing Channel 4’s Misfits with its theme tune, ‘Echoes’. They actually split up this year, but final album ‘In the Grace of Your Love’ was a decent note to end on.

51. Scouting For Girls

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=7ABNEjPxWEg. youtube.com / Via Epic Records

Best-known for ‘She’s So Lovely’, Scouting For Girls are still going, and even released a Greatest Hits last year despite only having released just ten singles. They may be derided by everyone, but Scouting for Girls have sold over 2 million records and have been nominated for four BRITs. Not bad for the same four chords.

52. So Solid Crew

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=g7VhofoV3qs. youtube.com / Via Relentless Records

The garage collective to end all garage collectives, what actually happened to the So Solid Crew? Well, Romeo and Harvey both appeared on Celebrity Big Brother, though the former worked with Christina Milian and the latter appeared in a gangster film. Lisa Maffia set up her own label, Maffia Records. Now you know.

53. Gwen Stefani

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=f5qICl3Fr3w. youtube.com / Via Interscope Records

It’s seemed like an age since she released anything, but recently she appeared at Coachella with Pharrell and was announced as a judge on next series’s The Voice US.

54. Joss Stone

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