Hare & Hounds are delighted to welcome back sensational 80s new-wave synth pop band Blancmange to the venue on Saturday 11th May.
‘Like a latter day Butch Cassidy & The Sundance Kid leaving their self-imposed exile, Stephen Luscombe & Neil Arthur emerge into the sunlight with a 21st Century Blancmange LP –“blanc burn”, due for release March 7th 2011. Blancmange continue their journey as the “maiden aunts of electronic music” Daniel Miller (Mute Records) – the godfathers being Kraftwerk.
From their initial EP “Irene & Mavis”, through to their inclusion on the infamous Some Bizarre Compilation (launch pad for Depeche Mode, The The & fellow Futurama performers, Soft Cell) & to Blancmange’s eventual chart busting forays, including “Living On The Ceiling”, “Waves”, “Blind Vision” & “Don’t Tell Me” (4 top ten, 8 top 30 releases) with London Records, Blancmange developed their sound, with their pioneering use of big fat analogue synths and a battery of wondrous Indian percussion from the equally wonderful Pandit Dinesh.
Currently Blancmange can be heard in everything from La Roux to LCD Sound System to Hot Chip. Alongside their contemporaries – the Human League, Magazine, Heaven 17 & OMD – Blancmange are now being recognized as true Electro-Pop trail blazing pioneers. Faithless recently covered the band’s dance floor classic “Feel Me”, La Roux have recently included the Blancmange B-side “What’s Your Problem” on their “Sidetracked” compilation with sleeve notes proclaiming“ …the Blue Print for Hot Chip”.
Blancmange was formed in Harrow, Middlesex in 1979 by vocalist Neil Arthur (born 15 June 1958, Darwen, Lancashire) and instrumentalist Stephen Luscombe (born 29 October 1954, Hillingdon, Middlesex). The duo released their first EP ‘Irene and Mavis’ the following year, but had their first real exposure via a track on the seminal Some Bizzare Album, alongside fellow acts Soft Cell and Depeche Mode. This led to them signing a recording contract with London Records.
The duo found minor success with their 1982 double A-sided single, ‘God’s Kitchen’/’I’ve Seen The Word’ which peaked at no.65 in the UK. This was followed by ‘Feel Me’ which peaked at no.46. Later that year, they broke through with ‘Living on the Ceiling’, which reached no.7 in the UK Singles Chart. Their debut album, Happy Families (which featured a sleeve painting in the style of Louis Wain) also reached the top 30.
Further hits followed with ‘Waves’ (no.19), ‘Blind Vision’ (no.10), ‘That’s Love That It Is’ (no.33) and ‘Don’t Tell Me’ (no.8), while their second album Mange Tout also reached no.8 in the UK album chart. In 1984, Blancmange covered ABBA’s single ‘The Day Before You Came’, which reached no.22 in the UK (slightly higher than Abba’s original less than two years earlier).’