Tuesday, October 5, 2010

The Thin Wall by Ultravox

I almost posted another German synthpop song, since I was on a roll, but I figured I better save some for later. Besides, I have a lot of bands that still haven't even gotten on the scoreboard yet, but which I've got a lot of songs I want to post, so let me start there.

Off and on as I've blogged, I've mentioned Ultravox quite a bit, and since that part of the Propaganda video with the arms reaching through the wall reminded me sharply of this video, I thought I'd start here. This is part of the Midge Ure era. Midge and Billie Currie, already of Ultravox, met on the Visage side project (oh, man! Do I ever need to talk about Visage!) so perhaps unsurprisingly, this period of Ultravox, the "classic line-up", is famously New Romantic in sound and approach. "The Thin Wall" was one of only two singles that were released from 1981's Rage in Eden.

I'm not going to talk about Ultravox too much now, because they'll figure many more times yet before I'm done, but it was always surprising to me how obscure they were in the US compared to the UK, where they had several top ten singles, and a run of success that was comparable to that of fellow New Romantics operating at the same time, Duran Duran. I think it had to be promotion; after all, Duran Duran were huge in the US, and the sound of Ultravox and Duran Duran in the earliest years of the 80s was really quite similar in most respects.

Ultravox-The Thin Wall
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