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Blancmange

Taking their name from a type of cooked pudding, the electronic duo Blancmange interlaced the arty, exotic dance rhythms of Talking Heads with the quirky melodrama of early-'80s British synth pop. Consisting of Neil Arthur (vocals, guitar) and Stephen Luscombe (keyboards), Blancmange formed in London, England, in the late '70s. Originally called L360, Blancmange received immediate recognition when they sent the song "Sad Day" to DJ Stevo, who added it to a compilation LP of then-unsigned new wave groups, including future alternative icons like Depeche Mode and Soft Cell. Drummer Laurence Stevens was a member of the band for a short while, but they eventually replaced him with a drum machine.

Signed to London Records, Blancmange released their first two singles, "God's Kitchen" and "Feel Me," in 1982. Both records were moderate hits in the U.K., the latter barely missing the Top 40 charts. Later that year, Blancmange's debut album, Happy Families, sold well on the strength of their first Top Ten hit, "Living on the Ceiling," which peaked at number seven in Britain. "Living on the Ceiling" captured Blancmange's unique take on synth pop, throwing heavy Middle-Eastern flavors into their very European style of club music. "Living on the Ceiling" was the beginning of a string of U.K. smashes; "Blind Vision" and "Don't Tell Me" both reached the Top Ten in England. Their cover of ABBA's "The Day Before You Came" was actually even more successful than the original, peaking at number 22. Blancmange's 1984 LP, Mange Tout, further established the group as one of Britain's most popular electronic artists; however, unlike many of their peers, Blancmange weren't afraid of experimenting with real instruments, incorporating sitars, strings, woodwinds, and horns into their synthesized sound.

But Blancmange's third album, 1985's Believe You Me, was a flop. The group broke up a year later. Arthur went solo while Luscombe formed the West India Company. They reunited in 2011 and released the album Blanc Burn on the Proper label. A 2013 tour of the U.K. found them performing their debut album in its entirety. These updated versions were released in 2014 as Happy Families Too..., an album that featured bonus remixes from Erasure's Vince Clark plus the synth group Komputer. Luscombe took a break from the group after he suffered an abdominal aneurysm, leaving Arthur as the sole member for the dark 2015 album Semi Detached. ~ Michael Sutton
full bio

Comments

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Yummmmmmmmmi
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munichchick
Danced my skinny butt off back in the 80's Munich, Germany New Wave and Punk Clubs to Blancmange. And still love it. They were super popular in Germany.
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They mean to EAT the blancmange!
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Besides the mix up with the La Roux artwork, they have Happy Families, Too as the cover of Happy Families.

They used to play Blancmange on MV3, an LA-based music video program. That program helped forge my musical tastes, along with KQAK, the quake in San Francisco.
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we used to go dancing at 7 seas in hollywood 4 nights a week back when clubbing was pur good times in the 80s and it was a rush everyone went into their own free style of dance when Blancmange was played by far one of the best club groups
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WLIR....good days. ..
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Four words: Flight of the navigator
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jonethin
Blancmange's music, But please take that DAMN La Roux Artwork off!!!!! Get your music facts right PANDORA!!!! Come on!!!
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Blancmange's Blanc Burn (2011) is fantastic. Check it out.
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barkenn
Was a huge fan back in the day and still am. Thought they were great but under appreciated by American radio. Am very interested to hear anything new.
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Blancmange has a new CD coming out in March. A track from it, call The Western, was previewed on BBC 6 in January 2011. Woo hoo!
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Mange Tout is xcellent...a h h , t h e good old days.Neil has a great voice,don't you think?

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