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Hello, Blancmange always were different. Neo romantics who love to experiment and a million of other things, how would you describe the world of Blancmange?
Trying to leave more out. More space. Not neo-romantic, more like electronic outsiders.

Your first album Happy Families was a godsend as in a way it’s an album full of great singles that are even timeless today. When you recorded the album, had you the idea that you were ready to conquer the world or was it unexpected?
The latter is the case. We had no idea nor any thought a song on the album would be remotely successful. I was amazed I’ve Seen The Word got played on the radio at all.

Blancmange is also loved among many groups, from the chart public to the new wave generation. With most bands it’s different, simply as they’re loved by one, and rejected by the other. Is that the reason why Blancmange could experiment more? I mean you write superb pop, but other songs are quite experimental.
Not being on the outside looking in, I don’t know. I have ideas that just get taken for a walk to see what happens. I think if I set out to write a potentially commercial song it would be I pointless exercise.

In your second career it feels like Blancmange is no longer interested in the charts, but more a band who wants to do what they want. Isn’t that difficult as I can imagine many people wants to have Blancmange, the juke box.
No it’s not difficult. I write what I want, that’s difficult enough. The jukebox is always there too, should someone need it.

Although you’re from Middlesex, I always thought you were connected to the Sheffield industrial sound with bands like Cabaret Voltaire, Hula or in a pop sense with The Human League. Can you see sense in that?
I’m from Darwen in Lancashire which is up north and was in a heavily industrial area. I can see the reference and without a doubt some of those bands you mention and many others had a big influence on us in the early days.

And now you announced a new album which will be released after the summer. Can you tell us something about it?
It’s called Unfurnished Rooms and is a collection of minimal synth led songs with additional guitar. I will tour it in the U.K. in October and hopefully more shows after that.

This summer you will be playing at W-Fest in Belgium, I guess you’re looking forward to that ?
Of course. Well be playing old and new songs and well look forward to having some Belgium beers too.

Will you play any new songs from Unfurnished Rooms?
That may well happen. I haven’t sorted the setlist out as yet.

Any acts you want to see yourself at W-Festival?
Front 242. They supported us in 1983 when we played Plan K in Brussels.

What do you prefer on a festival : ice cream, beer or French fries?
French fries.

What is your favourite record of all time and please state why.
Discrete Music by Brian Eno. It lasts a long while. Sometimes I forget it’s on and then it comes back in and reminds me how beautiful sounds can be.

With who would you want to be alone in an elevator for 8 hours and what would you do then?
A qualified lift engineer. I’d like them to get me out.

The last words are yours...

Artist interview by Didier Becu - Luminous Dash

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