Top Ten Team-Ups In Rock

By Brent Chittenden

If you’ve been following these lists the past few months, you’ll know that I’m a big fan of comics and one of the things I always loved when I was a kid was when characters teamed up. Like the Avengers and the Fantastic Four facing off against The Masters of Evil or Spider-Man and Daredevil trying to take down The Kingpin.  

And the same goes for music. I love it when and artist or band will team up with someone for a one off single or album. This list is designed to pick out my top ten favourites.  Hopefully you will enjoy them too. (I tried to stay away from sappy duets, supergroups and covers but one or two might have snuck in.)

10) Ministry and Gibby Haynes – Jesus Built My Hotrod

While this is always credited as a Ministry song, Gibby from the Butthole Surfers deserves a bit of credit just due to his distinct vocals. It sounds like Ministry with the dude from the Butthole Surfers not just Ministry, hence why it appears on this list.

9) Tool & Henry Rollins – Bottom

This song was never a single but the combination of Tool and Henry is like chocolate and peanut butter… if a Reese’s hit like a sledge hammer… if that makes any sense… but it sounds about right doesn’t it?

8) Bryan Adams & Tina Turner – It’s Only Love

As I have previously stated, I have a soft spot in my heart for Bryan Adams (up until Waking Up The Neighbors) and this team up with Tina Turner just shows off the powers of her vocals and quite honestly, more then anything else, I love that main guitar riff. 

7) The Pouges with Kristy MacColl – Fairytale of New York

Probably the best Christmas song ever (even though it’s not really about Christmas).

6) U2 and Johnny Cash – The Wanderer

I love the Achtung/Zooropa era of U2. I honestly think they were running at a really good creative peak at this point and combining that with the deep bass of Johnny Cash’s vocals just makes this tune awesome.

5) The Jesus and Mary Chain & Hope Sandoval – Sometimes Always

I guess this is kind of a ballad but much like the Bryan Adam / Tina Turner team up, this one has a great guitar vocal combo that makes it great. Not very indicative of J&MC’s work and not entirely like Sandoval’s, it works the middle into awesomeness.

4) Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds with Kylie Minogue – Where The Wild Rose Grows

I generally don’t like Kylie Minogue other than eye candy but Cave wrote this song for 1996’s Murder Ballads with her in mind and it works so well, I honestly can’t think of another person I’d see doing the female lead.

3) Anthrax and Public Enemy – Bring The Noise

While Aersomith and RUN DMC kicked open the rap rock door, Anthrax and Public Enemy knocked it off it’s hinges. Technically, this is a cover (PE did the original on 1987’s Less Than Zero soundtrack) but really, when you think of this song, it’s the Anthrax version that comes to mind.

2) Peter Gabriel & Kate Bush – Don’t Give Up

The one ballad I allowed on the list because really, how could I not? This duet is so strong that you really end up rooting for both characters to make it by the end of the song. Might even bring a tear to your eye.

1) Iggy Pop & (Insert Name Here)

In trying to assemble this list, the reigning king of rock (see Iggy live and try to dispute this, I dare you), came up a lot. Iggy Pop and Peaches is awesome. Iggy and Kate Pearson is really good. Iggy with members of Guns N Roses is really good. Iggy featuring Henry Rollins is really good. Iggy narrating on a song by White Zombie is good. Iggy with Sum 41, a band I normally have zero interest in, is really good. The moral of the story, if you’re in rock, try to do at least one song with Iggy because at the end of the day, you will know for certain that at least one song in your library kicks ass.

Special thanks goes out to my great girlfriend, Gen who came up with the list idea when I was running on empty. So loyal readers, who did I miss? What rock team ups should be on this list and why? The floor (by which I mean the comments section below) is yours.

Juliette Jagger

Juliette Jagger is a Canadian music journalist. She is on Twitter @juliettejagger.

3 thoughts on “Top Ten Team-Ups In Rock

  • March 22, 2013 at 4:28 pm
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    Know Your Enemy – Rage Against the Machine with Maynard from Tool

    Reply
  • March 22, 2013 at 6:19 pm
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    I know it's not in the alternative genre but I would like to mention Rush and Max Webster collaborating on "Battlescar". Love that one.

    Reply
  • March 22, 2013 at 6:24 pm
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    On a different take there's Apocalyptica, a cello-driven metal band. You've got to hear it to believe it. They predominantly do instrumental songs but their last two albums feature several songs by guest singers: Adam Gontier ("I Don't Care"), Corey Taylor ("I'm Not Jesus"), Til Lindemann (Rammstein, "Helden" which is a cover of Heroes done in German), Gavin Rossdale ("End of Me") as well as others.

    Reply

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