Music’s Most Unlikely Pairings

I’m pretty sure I wasn’t the only person that did a WTF double take on hearing the news that Lou Reed was teaming up with Metallica last month. Whether inspired or doomed or a mixture of the two it was definitely unforseen, and it got us thinking about other unlikely musical pairings over the years.

Check out our full rundown of music’s oddest twosomes online now.

From the inspired to the deranged there’s been all manner of odd hook-ups over the years. We’ve rounded up 25 of the most bizarre over at NME.COM/photos. I suppose the patron saints of ill-advised bedfellows are Bowie and Jagger, and their classic ode to what-were-we-thinking ‘Dancing In The Street’, a track recorded in haste and repented at leisure that features Mick, swinging in round a pole respelendent in some charity shop blouse and David strutting, ‘Walk Like An Egyptian’-style, into the frame in his finest Shoreditch leopard print catsuit and pervert coat. It gets worse from there.

So let’s take a look back at some of music’s other odd pairings. You’ve got your classic polar opposites, those hook-ups so unusual they’re designed to provoke, the most notable of which was probably Eminem’s attempt to clear himself of homophobia allegations by teaming up with serial collaborator Elton John.

As an extension of that, there’s the carefully stage-managed and brainstormed yet oh-so-unusual, how did they come up with that idea?!?!? sync. Think Klaxons and Rihanna at the Brits and Cee-Lo, Gwyneth and The Muppets at the Grammys.

There’s the inspired union, such as Nick Cave and Kylie:

The file under guilty pleasure:

The two wrongs don’t make a right:

And the wrong, from whichever way you look at it:

Then there’s the turn-away-now-and-bury-your-face-in-a-cement-mixer, those agonizing double teams that are several shades of wrong. This one springs to mind.

And how about the hook-ups that only sound like a good idea on drugs, preferably hallucinogens, and lots of them, such as this teamwork exercise from Happy Mondays and Scottish yodeller Karl Denver?

What are your favourite, or least favourite, bizarre musical hook-ups?

Check out our full rundown of music’s oddest twosomes online now.