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Soft Cell

Marc Almond. I found him scary but also slightly fascinating. I loved his voice and I thought the songs that he recorded along with David Ball - aka Soft Cell - were top drawer. Infact, I was quite inspired by these songs, despite being only 12 and 13 years old. 'Say Hello, Wave Goodbye' was one of the first singles I bought, from WHSmith on Fargate in Sheffield.

When it came to electropop, by 1982 there were plenty of groups at it: O.M.D., Depeche Mode and Sheffield's own Human League. All have recorded music that has stood the test of time. However, only Soft Cell recorded songs which not only stand the test of time but whose lyrics still hit the spots they hit 22 years since.

In fact, in my opinion, if anyone's music is due a reassessment, then it's the work of Soft Cell. "Tainted Love" became one of the biggest selling records of the eighties but their BEST work was the songs they composed together. "Torch" from 1982 was a perfect vehicle to show off Marc's vocal range; "Say Hello, Wave Goodbye" is probably THE synth classic of all time; "Bedsitter" is fantastic and I used to play it a few years later whilst getting ready to go out boozing. The lines "Clothes and records on the floor the memories of the night before" being apt at that time of my life.

Then there's "What?", another 1982 release and the seriously overlooked "Where The Heart Is" with brilliant vocal phrasing... "Atmosphere's tense today, Mother and Father are rowing again". Songs each with a message, brilliantly performed (despite the odd off key word or ten) and great backing (though the bass keys are a bit thin and basic).

But Soft Cell, very much a product of the eighties = timeless, classic pop!!

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Message boards

Soft Cell and Marc Almond Last post by JimCarver79
05 November 2019

Do You Remember Soft Cell?

Do You Remember Soft Cell?

  • Anonymous user
    Soft Cell were incredible, but all that anyone ever remembers is Tainted Love. "What about Torch?" I say, and all I get is blank faces. It got to number 2, for heaven's sake! For some reason I can still remember hearing Torch in the car with my mum when we were on our way to an aquarium shop. Strange memory, but 30 years on it's still as clear as day. I had Soft Cell's Non-Stop Erotic Cabaret VHS but I don't think I'd have been allowed it, had my folks known about the dwarves and Soho stuff.
  • Anonymous user
    Another great band I had the pleasure of catching 'live' in the early 80s. Top chap, Marc Almond called someone out who'd chucked eggs at him - using a great put-down, I recall. (Fancy paying to see one of the best vocalists at the time & doing that - what a plonker!!)