Minimal Wave are proud to announce that we’ll be reissuing Blancmange’s seminal debut EP Irene & Mavis in November 2013.
Formed in the UK by Neil Arthur and Stephen Luscombe, Blancmange recorded the six songs on Irene & Mavis in 1979 and released it as a 7” EP in 1980.
Irene & Mavis, though not exactly representative of what Blancmange later went on to become, is a fascinating relic that captures the gestation period of the duo, fresh out of art school and keen to experiment. The D.I.Y. sound of the EP fits right in there with the early output of Soft Cell, the Human League, and Cabaret Voltaire; but what separates it from those like-minded releases of the time is that it’s even more distinctly English. In fact it was Daniel Miller, supporter and Mute boss himself who first recognized this when he proclaimed them “the maiden aunts of electronic music”.
The Irene & Mavis EP is simultaneously pioneering, provincial, and surreal in its down-to-earth playfulness and lack of artifice. It stands out as an important record, capturing the mundane with modern electronics and remains as an artifact representative of the band before they went on to reach pop chart success.
The Irene & Mavis EP has been newly remastered and will be released as a numbered limited edition 10” EP in November. A digital release will follow.