Five 1990s bands who broke up too soon

These bands are gone but should not be forgotten.
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The three albums Sleeper released at the height of Britpop in the mid-‘90s all made the top ten on the UK charts. An early tour with Blur helped put them on the map, and Louise Wener’s songwriting grew more ambitious with each album. At their height, they opened for REM and for Elvis Costello.

But by the time the third album, Pleased to Meet You, dropped, it was 1998, and the supernova that once was Britpop had flamed out. Sleeper was one of the most obvious casualties. The singles from Pleased to Meet Me -- “Romeo Me” and “She’s a Good Girl” – were first-rate romantic pop anthems that probably would have fared better if they didn’t have the stamp of Britpop on them. And “Firecracker” is great modern glam pop. Wener was adamant that the band was not on the verge of collapse right up until they announced the end.

Then, twenty years later, Sleeper was reborn. In 2019, they released The Modern Age. It was fine, but not much better than a rehash of their ‘90s music. But the second album of their second run, 2021’s This Time Tomorrow, was something different. If not exactly groundbreaking, it sounded fresh, hinting at a genuine second chapter for a band that we didn’t realize we would miss until they were gone.