Wednesday Question: Best Side Project?

This week we'll be exploring the side projects domain. There's plenty to chose from, vote for your favorites now!

Ultimate Guitar

If there's one thing in the rock world that just screams hit and miss, it's the side projects. Artists sometimes feel the need to express themselves in a slightly or drastically different manner, so occasional side projects simply come naturally.

Despite often being successful, they also have a tendency to end up as flops due to numerous factors. But we'll put that aside and focus on the best.

So this week we'll explore the side project domain. As the title clearly indicates, this week's Wednesday question is:

What is the best side project of all time?

There's a lot to chose from here. Tool's Maynard James Keenan and his side projects might pop up to your mind first, but basically every sub-genre has it's representatives. Did you know that In Flames were actually founded as a side project? If we were to dwell into the grunge domain, there's Mad Season. Among the hard rockers, there's Alter Bridge. Then there's Porcupine Tree, MD.45, Gov't Mule, the list goes on and on.

So whoever your favorite may be, make sure you mention them in the comments and possibly secure the band a spot in the top 10. Just to get the facts straight, a side project is a musical endeavor of one or several musicians already known for their involvement in other groups.

Same rules as usual apply - post one nomination per comment and upvote other comments you agree with (or downvote those you don't like). We'll gather up the results by Friday and traditionally compile our weekly list. May the best side project win!

476 comments sorted by best / new / date

    I'd go with Raconteurs.
    I prefer Dead Weather over Raconteurs since DW is personally more original.
    I honestly prefer Dead Weather over Raconteurs as well because I can actually get into it. DW is more interesting to me, I love their sound.
    Temple of the Dog
    Love Them Crooked Vultures but they still have to release an album that's as much of a classic as TOTD. It's right up there with Ten and Badmotorfinger. I can't believe they recorded that stuff in just 2 weeks
    Temple is not really a side project. It was a tribute album made for Andrew Wood. Great Album, but not a side project...In my opinion Another couple side projects that I liked, that I have not seen mentioned is Layne Staley's Mad Season Traveling Wilburys
    it was a tribute to Andrew Wood that they did on the side of their other bands...
    Gorillaz! Great work, solid band.
    The amazing thing is how there is such a massive "history" about the virtual band, in addition to some kick-ass songs!
    A Perfect Circle
    Them Crooked Vultures
    Dig TCV and gave them a vote, but isn't it more of a supergroup than a side-project? Seems like there's a real grey area to this question....
    I'm pretty sure TCV is John Paul Jones' main-project. He isn't doing much else today, is he? I really don't know.
    Eh? I love TCV and all, but how is this WINNING???
    Thank you. TCV are good, but not anything over-the-top special. People just look at the lineup and freak out. Add on the fact that people on this site worship the ground Homme and Grohl walk on and you have your winner.
    Hey you forget that guy..whats his name?...oh, JOHN PAUL FUCKING JONES!
    Couldn't disagree more. I have haven't herd anything as dynamic, interesting, sexy, dangerous, melodic, heavy and original in a long, long time. John Paul Jones is a freak of nature and TCV showed me he must have a played a much larger role in LZ than I had previously thought. Caligulove, Spinning in the Daffodils and Bandoliers were incredible songs. Best rhythm section alive today if you ask me. Watching Grohl follow Jones and Jones trying to throw him off without success in the live shows while they both grin like thieves was a beautiful thing. Them Crooked Vultures FTW!!!!
    Because all the fan boys are voting for their heros Dave Grohl (who apparently is the second coming of Christ or something), and Josh Homme (who to me makes his guitar sound like a dying midget on acid, not like music at all)
    I'd count them as a full time band. But if not, then I'd say Velvet Revolver just in case.
    Franko 316
    Side project ≠ Super Group. Despite how great those two bands are.
    RatM and Soundgarden were split during the time Audioslave was together. It couldn't be a side-project if they weren't working on their "main-project".
    I agree, but the article says "Just to get the facts straight, a side project is a musical endeavor of one or several musicians already known for their involvement in other groups." So I guess Audioslave is eligible too
    Dead Eye Dick
    I do think Audioslave is eligible as chris cornell put his solo career on hold to make it happen.
    My vote goes to A Perfect Circle. Both Mer De Noms and the Thirteenth Step are great records. Maynard is the man
    Porcupine Tree for sure
    I don't get how PT is under side project? Wilson's solo stuff and his work with Mikael Akerfeldt are side projects but why PT?
    Ever hear of No-Man? Porcupine Tree has my vote as well on this one.
    I do have heard of them, and as far as my knowledge goes, they were both formed around the same time. So which one is the side project? PT has released a lot more stuff than No-Man...
    I would think the "side" project would be the one that wasn't his primary focus, aka No-Man.
    PT came second to No Man and started as a joke band. It just a side project that became massive =]
    Foxboro Hot Tubs
    This is such a legit contender. It's the original band, with a totally different style, that was successful on its own (became pretty well known when no one knew who the members were) and then was shut down to resume business. They are a true, very successful side project.
    Transatlantic. Not just one of the best side projects, but one of the best overall new prog bands. They truly capture the spirit of prog.
    Only 3 votes for this, unbelievable. Transatlantic have recorded some of the best music FULL STOP, let alone being a mere side project.
    If we can consider The Aristocrats a side project, my vote is for them.
    Avantasia ! (guess you can't call it a supergroup because the guest musicians are too many and changing)
    You really want that gold medal don't you
    Or maybe he's just smart enough to post his nominations in separate comments. He certainly has a lot of them.
    You are going to get the medal for pointing it out. Lol how smart of UG users
    I got the medal once. Wasn't nearly as satisfying as I thought it would be.
    getting the medal is like getting a top comment on youtube, its feels good and then you just forget eventually
    I got the top comment on Foo Fighters - The Pretender, but it was only for like a day.. still the proudest moment my Youtube account has ever seen
    this is one of the few proper side projects suggested on here since most are supergroups, this should have loads more votes, surprisingly considering people on this website worship Dave Grohl, but then again this suffers from being put out on Southern Lord records and not getting the respect or exposure it deserves.
    Aryan Death Man
    alter bridge
    Yea, AB's not a side project
    According to the article's definition, AB would count. "Just to get the facts straight, a side project is a musical endeavor of one or several musicians already known for their involvement in other groups." I consider AB the main band now too, and something like Tremonti or Slash feat. Myles as the side projects, but whatever. +1 for AB
    Furthermore, this is a direct quote from the article: "Among the hard rockers, there's Alter Bridge." So they get my vote, although Tremonti and Slash ft. Myles comes in a close second for me. This topic is SUCH a grey area, though. :/ I don't ACTUALLY think AB count, but if they DO, I'm voting for them.
    Anty 7
    I wouldn't call Porcupine Tree a side project Liquid Tension Experiment for me