8. Bryan Devendorf, drums; Scott Devendorf, bass (The National)
The National’s rhythm section has the ultimate leg-up when it comes to locking perfectly—It’s made up of two brothers. While the two aren’t the most explosive or hard-hitting duo, the Devendorf brothers are master students in the school of dynamics. Every note and beat played is as carefully anticipated, executed and sustained as the one before it. The Devendorf brothers can sound huge and uplifting (“Bloodbuzz Ohio,” “Abel”), reserved (“Vanderlyle Crybaby Geeks”), and melodramatic (“Fake Empire”) all within a 15-minute span of a set. Without the two, The National’s layered melodies and baritone moans would lose their grandeur, and elegance — and that would be a terrible thing.
Defining moments: “Bloodbuzz Ohio,” “Anyone’s Ghost,” “Abel,” “Squalor Victoria”