Side Note: For some reason it seems like Thursdays are turning into a day where I rant about some issue. This is not intentional, it just has been the day that I have these articles finished by. We'll see if this 'trend' continues.
The title of this article may be a bit misleading, but I couldn't figure a way to word it any better. By the above I mean; at what point does a band, upon losing original members, stop being the band they were originally? I know that's not much clearer, but stay with me, I will explain.
Styx article (Favorite Albums: The Grand Illusion) to which I remarked that when I saw the band live, some years ago, there was only one original member of the band still recording and touring. In a like story, I know that 3 Inches of Blood lost their last founding member a couple of years ago, meaning that when you see the band live, you aren't seeing the group that released Battlecry Under a Wintersun, or perhaps even Advance and Vanquish (I don't know, I didn't spend that much time checking their attendance).
So do you call that truly seeing or hearing the band? I know it's just an argument over details, because these acts are still recording new music, still touring, and still being Styx or 3 Inches of Blood, but there has to be a line when the band isn't really the band, and I'm just querying of when that line is reached.
Rush. Now known as Geddy Lee, Alex Lifeson, and Neil Peart, but it wasn't always this way. Original drummer for the group, from 1968 to 1974, was John Rutsey being a member just long enough to record their debut album. So technically, Neil Peart isn't an original member. So if Geddy Lee, and Alex Lifeson decided to take a break and Peart toured without them, could he really call the band Rush (I know he would, but should he is my question).
So back to the original question: what percentage of original members do you need to actually be the band you are pretending to be? It's not as big of an issue for more modern bands, as they only have a handful of releases. It's when you get to the acts that have been around for twenty or thirty years. Back to the Styx example, they are still putting out albums, but with such a long history, I feel kind of cheated with only one original member.