We recently caught up with Neil Arthur, part of the electronic act described as ‘synth-pop royalty’ Blancmange – and here’s what he had to say:
(1) How did Blancmange form?
AT HARROW ART COLLEGE IN 1978
(2) Is there a story behind the name?
IT WAS SIMPLY A REACTION TO ALL THE OVER THOUGHT NAMES THAT WERE EMERGING POST PUNK.
SOMETHING THROW AWAY, ANYTHING, JUST A NAME.
(3) Who would you say have been your biggest influences as Blancmange?
ROXY MUSIC, PERE UBU, NEU!, ENO, CAPT BEEFHEART, ABBA, FATS WALLER, DELIA DERBYSHIRE (RADIOPHONIC WORKSHOP).
(4) Would you say you prefer being in the studio recording new material or playing live shows?
IN THE STUDIO, ALTHOUGH LIVE SHOWS ARE GREAT, THE TRAVELLING AND HOTELS REPETITION IS BLOODY TEDIOUS.
(5) What was the first music festival you went to – as a fan or indeed as Blancmange?
ROCK AGAINST RACISM, FEATURING MISTY IN ROOTS, I THINK.
(6) Do you have a favourite venue/city to play live? (They don’t have to be the same!)
VENUE – HAMMERSMITH PALAIS, CITY – LONDON.
(7) If you had to only play festivals or headline sets for the rest of your career, which would you prefer?
SETS PLEASE. LESS MUD, MORE TIME, LESS “APOCALYPSE NOW” SITUATIONS.
(8) Do you have a favourite song to play live?
ANYTHING FROM “UNFURNISHED ROOMS” THE NEW ALBUM.
(9) What are your ambitions as Blancmange for the future?
MORE RECORDING, COLLABORATIONS, (FADER, NEAR FUTURE) MORE TOURS, I WANT MORE!
(10) If you could have written one song in history yourself, what would you have preferred it to be?
ODE TO JOY – BEETHOVEN.
Catch Blancmange at Rescue Rooms on 4th November 2017