This week's traditional Wednesday Question saw the esteemed members of the UG community discussing the matter of bands who flopped due to major lineup changes.
The lineup change didn't have to be the sole factor in the act's failure to reach commercial or artistic success, but it certainly needed to be among crucial contributors.
We received plenty of votes and over 450 comments, all of which were neatly summed up into a Top 28 rundown.
Before kicking things off, honorable mentions include Queen after Freddie Mercury, Stone Temple Pilots without Scott Weiland, Sublime With Rome, White Lion, Def Leppard, R.E.M. after Bill Berry, Bloc Party without Gordon Moakes and Matt Tong, Queensrÿche after Chris DeGarmo, Journey after Steve Perry, Suicide Silence after Mitch Lurker, Helloween without Kai Hansen and Michael Kiske, and INXS after Michael Hutchence's death.
With that sorted out, the full list awaits below.
In 2005, Brian "Head" Welch left Korn, and then drummer David Silveria also left in 2006. The band entered a down phase of weak albums sales and dubstep experimentation, and although two of the Head-less albums actually managed to reach No. 2 on the Billboard 200 chart, none of them got close to classic Korn.
27. Lynyrd Skynyrd
The tragic plane crash of 1977 robbed Lynyrd Skynyrd of vocalist Ronnie Van Zant, guitarist Steve Gaines and backing vocalist Cassie Gaines, and while the band had full right to march on, their creative output simply never matched the classic era.
UG user Tha Funkinator noted: "After the plane crash and death of Ronnie Van Zant, they went from a band of Southern boys who drew part of their sound from country but had enough of a outsider wit that would never fit the 'God Guns and 'Merica' mold... to a by-the-numbers bar band that unironically released an album called 'God & Guns.'"
26. Mötley Crüe
Between 1992 and 1997, vocalist Vince Neil left Motley Crue and the band ventured forth with John Corabi. The gang released their self-titled album in 1994 with Corabi on vocals, scoring merely a gold sales certificate, which is a great flop as a follow-up to 6x-platinum "Dr. Feelgood."
25. Judas Priest
Between 1996 and 2003, Judas Priest were fronted by Tim "Ripper" Owens, releasing two studio albums to lukewarm reception from fans.
While the Phil Collins-fronted Genesis alienated a fair share of prog fans, it did bring the band great success. However, when Phil left in 1996, the band ventured forth and released "Calling All Stations" in 1997, receiving disastrous reviews and resulting with the band calling it quits soon afterwards. Although Genesis are back on track with Mr. Collins since 2006, "Calling All Stations" is still their final album to date.
23. Black Sabbath
When Ronnie James Dio left Black Sabbath in 1982, the band recruited Ian Gillan from Deep Purple. He didn't fit well and left within two years, releasing "Born Again" with the gang in 1983. Following Gillan's departure, the band hired Tony Martin and entered another commercially unsuccessful stage.
Once again, it's the departure of Ronnie James Dio that led to the flop, but now we're talking about Rainbow. Dio was in the band until 1979, and then significantly dropped in terms of quality in the eyes of UG community. Some of the post-Dio Rainbow singles include "I Surrender," "Since You've Been Gone," and "Street of Dreams."
Up next is Boston without their late vocalist Brad Delp. Ozzmosis noted: "The 'Walk On' album was alright, considering that Brad Delp wasn't with the band. However, their sound and style completely changed with the last 2 albums. It's more than a feeling... of disappointment."
Metallica makes the list with their "St. Anger" era, or the departure of Jason Newsted from the band. To this day, the album remains perhaps the single most bashed 'Tallica effort.
19. Deep Purple
With the departure of Ritchie Blackmore in 1975, Deep Purple ventured forth with Tommy Bolin on guitar and released "Come Taste the Band" the same year, receiving mixed reviews and weaker sales. Bolin died of overdose in 1976 at the age of 25, marking the end of Purple until 1984.
Slayer without Jeff Henneman gets a no-go in the eyes of UG community, bringing the band to No. 18.
17. Limp Bizkit
With the departure of Wes Borland in 2001, Limp Bizkit marched on with Mike Smith on guitar to follow-up the massively-successful "Chocolate Starfish and the Hot Dog Flavored Water" album with not-so-successful "Results May Vary" in 2003.
Michale Graves left in 2000 and Jerry Only took over the vocals, securing Misfits a spot on the list.
The departure of Farro brothers in 2010 brings Paramore to No. 15. Boreamor noted: "They went to clinical pop rock, that was more pop than anything. It just lost so much power and reality."
As Bedside Shred pointed out, "After Ace, it wasn't worth it." Also worth pointing out, however, is that Ace leaving the band hardly stopped the commercial success of the band.
13. Avenged Sevenfold
When The Rev died, Avenged Sevenfold marched on, but failed to reach the status of their classics with "Hail to the King."
12. Drowning Pool
Original Drowning Pool vocalist Dave Williams passed away after the release of the band's first album, and the group never managed to match its success.
In the words of schecterhellraz, "They were great before it just became Andrew Stockdale." Jebordini added: "First album, as a power trio was great and they were set to be a hell of a band. Then bassist/keyboard player [Chris Ross] and drummer [Myles Heskett] left and Stockdale kept changing line ups and releasing just okay albums."
10. Three Days Grace
After longtime frontman and Three Days Grace founder Adam Gontier in 2013, the band opted to take on the difficult task of venturing forth, and failed to meet the expectations with 2015's "Human."
9. Skid Row
Skid Row never recovered from Sebastian Bach's departure, and to this day many fans pretty much don't even recognize any of the band's eras apart from the Bach stuff.
8. The Doors
After Jim Morrison died, The Doors tried to venture forth, releasing three studio albums in total. After the first two - 1971's "Other Voices" and 1972's "Full Circle" - severely flopped, the gang officially called it quits. They got back together in 1978 to release "An American Prayer" as their final studio effort and that was it.
7. Iron Maiden
When Bruce Dickinson left in 1993, Blaze Bayley had some pretty big shoes to fit, and while a solid portion of the fans remembers that the band did release some quality tunes on the Blaze-era albums - "Virtual XI" and "The X Factor" - the whole phase was still very much a flop.
6. Smashing Pumpkins
Following the departure of James Iha and D'arcy Wretzky, Billy Corgan simply couldn't reach the glory days of The Smashing Pumpkins once again.
When Max Cavalera left, classic Sepultura ended, and the new lineup never got even close to the band's glory days.
4. Van Halen
Most people only recognize David Lee Roth and Sammy Hagar as Van Halen vocalists, but there was also a guy named Gary Cherone fronting the band between 1996 and 1999. The lineup released an album called "Van Halen III" in 1998, and it was greatly unsuccessful.
3. Dream Theater
The bronze medal goes to Mike Portnoy leaving Dream Theater. A few words from the UG panel on the whole matter:
Undeadson: "Portnoy was the soul of DT and the three albums after him are so bland and clinical."
nicholas72611: "'The Astonishing' is honestly on of the most bland, insipid albums I have ever heard in my life. I made half an hour into that piece of shit until I almost fell asleep. Compare 'Systematic Chaos' to self-titled. It's obvious which is better. DT died after Portnoy left."
travislausch: "As much as I respect Mangini's skills and how well of a personality fit he is for the band, his drumming has left me cold every time. He's such a precise hitter that I can't shake the feeling that I'm listening to a drum machine. Portnoy was a little looser, and his drumming was far more colorful and interesting."
schecterhellraz: "Though it's hard to deny their shift in style after Portnoy left, saying that their recent albums have been failures is simply just wrong. 'ADTOE' was at #8 on the billboard 200 and #1 in a bunch of countries, and they received their first ever Grammy nomination, even though the Grammy's are a joke.. Self-titled made it to #7 on the top 200, marking their 3rd consecutive appearance on the top 10.
"'Astonishing' made it to #11 on the top 200 and #1 on the Billboard rock chart for the first time in band history. Not to mention sold out world tours for all of these albums... If you call this failing, then sign me up!"
2. Red Hot Chili Peppers
After John Frusciante left in 2009, the Red Hot Chili Pepers ventured on, but many agree that it's simply not the same, securing the boys a silver medal for this week.
1. Guns N' Roses
At the throne of UG this week, you folks crowned Guns N' Roses as the No. 1 band that failed due to major lineup changes. The major lineup change would of course be the departure of Izzy Stradlin, and then Slash and Duff McKagan.