13 Best Two-Piece Bands

What is it about the two-piece bands (mainly just guitar and drums) that have made them such a cult over the past few years? And even more to the point, why are they so good? I get the feeling that a two-piece band only needs two people to have a like-minded approach to their creativity, and probably the fact that they seem to attract really, really talented musicians. Here’s a list of some of my favourites, which is weird given that as a bass player I’d probably prefer we don’t get left out – but as always, if there are others you’d like to give the nod to please let me know in the comments below.

1. Royal Blood: Old school rock at it’s finest – with a very big sound.

2. Black Keys: More often with other band members these days, but oh boy, when they started out!

3. White Stripes: It’s good to see where it all started!

4. Honeyblood: Queens of the two-piece from Glasgow. Great vocals!

5. Voodoo Binmen: Very heavy and aggressive – so much energy!

6. Table Scraps: Fuzzy and loud, this Birmingham based duo really hammer it home.

7. Death From Above 1979: Now disbanded but pioneers in this space.

8. Japandroids: Canadian power-rock duo.

9. RAD FRU: The look is as good as the music – with sweet riffs.

10. DZ Deathrays: Straight outta Bundaberg with a dance/punk bullet.

11. Drenge: Brit grunge two-piece with a great melodic sound.

12. Slaves: About as garage/punk as you’re going to get from a two-piece.

13. No Age: Going strong since 2005 with their experimental punk.

Update: 15th September 2018
I got a message from Andy Cavaluzzi telling me about his two-piece (drums/bass) band, Locate Your Lips, from Milwaukee. What makes them interesting is that they were playing like this in 1981! Props to Andy as a pioneer in this space.

14 Comments on “13 Best Two-Piece Bands

  1. Pingback: Shuffle Aces: Royal Blood - Figure It Out

  2. I have “Royal Blood” tattooed on my chest (literally) and The Black Keys are my absolute favorite band of today, but the White Stripes will always be the best to ever play 2 piece IMO.

  3. I get this is a personal favourite list but to have Royal Blood in front of the Keys and White Stripes is big time recency bias. I mean they only have two albeit great albums.

    • Fair call – and for me the list isn’t in order, it’s more that they are the 13 best. I know it doesn’t look that way though!

  4. Great article and recognition for the brilliant sound generated by two!
    Here’s more additions to your files.
    TJ & SON (AUS)
    The Blacktides (AUS)
    Straight-Jacket Tailors (AUS)
    Filthy Lucre (AUS)
    Hivemind (AUS)
    King of the North (AUS)
    The Standstills (CAN)
    The Cigarillos (AUS)
    Chief Weapons (AUS)
    Acid Kat (AUS)
    Elegant Shiva (AUS)
    Fyre Byrd (AUS)
    Jackson Firebird (AUS)
    Faux Bandit (AUS)

    Yes, I’m from Australia…lol

  5. Definitely check out Powder for Pigeons! A very nice German-Australian couple with an incredible sound!

  6. A couple of these are okay, but what about the good 2 piece bands? Like Ruins, Lightning Bolt, Hella, Bangladeafy, Planets, Morphine, Pink and Brown, Giraffes? Giraffes!, there are many more that are all better than the ones on this list, but thanks for helping me find all the unknown 2-piece bands I should stay away from

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