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#100829 - Sat, 08 Apr 2017 23:15:23 Question to the audience
Vladimir Offline
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Registered: Thu, 02 Dec 2004 20:00:00
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Loc: Russia, Moscow suburb, the cit...
Hi all! I realise that I'm probably a bit too late with this as the Forum is if not dead then a very quiet place for quite some time now - but I still would like to ask anyone who's willing to answer this.

I've been writing a paper on Ultravox's album "Vienna" a couple of months ago and it made me think - what was it that made people (you especially) notice the band? What made Ultravox stand out for you among other bands of the period? Why them as a favourite band?

I know that there are very few people now who have seen the band during the early 1980s (or even late 1970s) - so any answer from such a person is an especially valueable one.

Really looking forward to any thought on this - and thanks in advance to anyone who's going to answer.

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#100831 - Sun, 09 Apr 2017 20:28:49 Re: Question to the audience [Re: Vladimir]
Rodney Offline
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Registered: Sat, 29 Jun 2002 19:00:00
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Loc: Dunedin, New Zealand
The first time I really 'heard' Ultravox was in December 1981 (just after the school holidays had commenced) and it was a friend's cassette recording of the recently released (in New Zealand) Rage In Eden album. I was just discovering music at that time and the sounds from this album just 'clicked' with my personality, I suppose. It was an intriguing mix of quasi-classical music with modern, electronic pop/rock instrumentation combined with powerfully emotive vocals and lyrics. It was sometime later that I do recall the Vienna video being on TV earlier that year.

After obtaining my own copy and playing it over-and-over repetitively, I remember being mesmerized by Warren Cann's 'electronic percussion' at the end of Accent On Youth, where, to me, it sounded like horse hooves on a road!

Anyway, since then, I've been a devoted fan and, to me, they continued to maintain a musical distinction, levels above any of their peers of the period and this was also enhanced by the imagery created by the graphic design artwork, especially that of Peter Saville.


Cheers, Vladimir.

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#100832 - Tue, 11 Apr 2017 13:20:40 Re: Question to the audience [Re: Rodney]
Björn Offline
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Registered: Sun, 20 Mar 2005 20:00:00
Posts: 418
Loc: Gislaved, Sweden

I´m mainly an "Urevox" fan, but have later discovered a lot of good songs on the "pre-ure" albums, especially the debut album and "Systems of romance".

The first time I heard Ultravox, was on a Cassette (trendy...)that my older brother gave me in 1982. It was "Rage in eden" and I only liked "The voice"(now I think that RIE is almost ther best album). Two years later, two mates had a discussions about which album they prefered: Quartet or Lament. Then "The collection" was released and I gave it a go....and I was a instant fan. I collected every 12 inch single and album. Too my sad surprise, Ultravox had recently played in my country, so I had to wait for the "U-vox" tour in 1986. Luckily I saw them twice at their reunion tours. Kind regards!//Björn

Well, that´s my little story.

Regards
Björn

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#100833 - Wed, 12 Apr 2017 08:03:11 Re: Question to the audience [Re: Vladimir]
AndyM Offline
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Registered: Wed, 04 Jan 2017 10:44:32
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Loc: UK
Originally Posted By Vladimir

I know that there are very few people now who have seen the band during the early 1980s (or even late 1970s) - so any answer from such a person is an especially valueable one.


Hi,

Are you suggesting we're all getting a little old ?? smile smile

I remember vividly, I heard All Stood Still being played one day when I was at a snooker club, I was in my early teens. I just thought "hey, that's different and exciting, I like that"

and that was it smile followed them ever since

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#100835 - Wed, 12 Apr 2017 12:46:42 Re: Question to the audience [Re: Vladimir]
Gwilym Offline
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Registered: Sun, 25 Jun 2006 19:00:00
Posts: 248
Loc: Wales.
In 1989 I borrowed my older cousin's copy of "The Collection" LP. All I'd really heard by Ultravox before then was the Vienna single on the radio/ TV when I was a kid, so it was a revelation to hear all these other great songs they'd released too. I started collecting their albums and singles from that point on.

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#100837 - Sat, 22 Apr 2017 16:44:21 Re: Question to the audience [Re: Vladimir]
Flip Martian Offline
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Registered: Sat, 29 Jun 2002 19:00:00
Posts: 4743
Loc: Here
For me...In 1979 I was into Gary Numan and at that time he namechecked Ultravox and especially Systems of Romance as a big influence and a favourite of his. So I bought it, loved it, then bought the previous 2 albums. I enjoyed all 3. Then the new Ultravox brought out Sleepwalk and I absolutely LOVED that (and still do). So that was that - favourite band status since. smile

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#100839 - Thu, 27 Apr 2017 20:45:52 Re: Question to the audience [Re: Vladimir]
davox Offline
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Registered: Thu, 27 Nov 2008 20:00:00
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Loc: Germany
My brother came in February 1981 with an album from a band I've never heard before. A black and white cover, four men on it, and a very modern font says: "Ultravox" and "Vienna". This was the start of loving the band and the music, and nothing has changed to this day. It was, it is and it will be my favourite band. And one of the great songs will be played on my funeral for sure

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#100842 - Fri, 28 Apr 2017 23:56:11 Re: Question to the audience [Re: davox]
zico Offline
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Registered: Mon, 27 Apr 2009 19:00:00
Posts: 51
Loc: Sussex
It was probably about 1982 ish when I was about 14 and I went to a party thrown by a mate from school. You know the thing, smuggling in vodka in a bottle of coke and 10 consulate in your back pocket!! Anyway at the party Ultravox was played pretty much all night. Up until then I liked a fair bit of music but generally individual songs rather than bands but there was something about Ultravox that intrigued me.

A few weeks later my late dad bought me my first Ultravox single Hymn and my love for the band just grew from there and every album and video I bought.

The Collection album and especially the video was a big draw with the fantastic videos and as I say there was just something a little bit different about them. Maybe it was the fact that they weren't big in the way Spandau and Duran were with all the schoolgirls chasing them, it was almost like Ultravox were a more mature band to like and that's meaning no disrespect to the Duran's and Spandau's. Plus I have been partially deaf for most of my life so music hasn't really been my number one love, I tend more to like movies, so it's a visual thing when you are deaf, so I think the visual of the fantastic videos along with the pumping beat of Ultravox is probably why I leaned more towards them.

Unfortunately I was deemed too young to go to a concert back then so back in 2009 or 10 I can't remember the reunion was a big thing for me. I went to Brighton to see them on the Thursday and went to Hammersmith on the Friday and the next year went to Hammersmith again. All that after never thinking I would see them live. In fact I for my sins am a West Ham fan and 2009, the week of the two concerts I went to I also played at Upton Park, so you can imagine if I could bottle one week in my life it would probably be that!!

Still love most of the music although obviously like most of us I have my favourites. I wasn't over keen on Brilliant but it was still far better than most of the tosh we get these days and I still blare out Vienna most days. Vienna and Hymn are probably the two I will have played at my funeral although Hymn might be a tad devilish for a church, but who cares, I won't be there!!!! In fact I wish I could be with "hymn" written on the service card then Midge blares out from the speakers!!!


Edited by zico (Fri, 28 Apr 2017 23:57:28)

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#100843 - Sat, 29 Apr 2017 08:45:07 Re: Question to the audience [Re: zico]
Alone With Strangers Offline
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Registered: Sun, 23 May 2004 19:00:00
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Loc: a different planet
Heard Hiroshima Mon Amour, thought I would go buy the single that was out out the time, Passing Strangers. And then thought 'my, that bloke's voice has changed'.


Edited by Alone With Strangers (Sat, 29 Apr 2017 08:45:23)

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#100857 - Sat, 27 May 2017 22:29:36 Re: Question to the audience [Re: Alone With Strangers]
Jojo Offline
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Registered: Wed, 22 Oct 2008 19:00:00
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Loc: liverpool
I used to be quite an avid ice skater and during the summer holidays 1980 I was at Liverpool Ice Rink awaiting the officials to clear the rink to let the more experienced skaters speed skate,I got on the ice and Sleepwalk came on, I was hooked from that moment on.

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#100860 - Sun, 28 May 2017 20:15:16 Re: Question to the audience [Re: Jojo]
Adi Offline
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Registered: Sun, 02 Nov 2003 20:00:00
Posts: 122
Loc: Southampton - UK
Hi

I was dragged along by my cousin to my first ever gig at the Southampton Gaumont to see a band that I had never heard of before - Ultravox, on the Vienna tour.
I don't remember much about the gig, but a short while later they released the single Vienna, which I went out and bought along with the LP and a cassette as well.
I've been hooked ever since and seen them live 6 times (4 times back in the 80's and twice since the reunion).
My musical tastes were definitely shaped by that first gig and I still love electronic music to this day.
I no longer go to live shows as I now suffer quite badly with Tinnitus (probably as a result of listening to Ultravox too loudly!)
I missed the last tour and was really looking forward to the Blueray recording of the show so that I could watch it at home - maybe it will see the light of day at some time in the future........

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#100869 - Sat, 01 Jul 2017 09:57:38 Re: Question to the audience [Re: Vladimir]
Ishikawa Offline
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Registered: Thu, 23 Apr 2009 19:00:00
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Loc: Scotland
For me, it all started with a jacket. Yep. laugh I was 13 years old, in a queue for our local "dancing" in 1978, when I spotted one of the well-known punks from our school wearing this green Harrington-esque jacket, with the 1st-album font "Ultravox!" quite intricately embroidered across the top/back of it. I asked him what it meant, and he told me it was a band he liked. With such a grand name like that, I was instantly curious, and next time I was in our local "Impulse" record shop, I looked for anything to do with the band. I found "Rockwrok" single with its cut-out pics cover, bought it (still have it), and that was that. Hooked. I really liked the title song, but it was the chaotic, dystopic version of HMA on the B-side that really got me. I never got to see the band play live until the first reunion gigs a few years back, but their music (especially Foxx-vox era) has been a huge influence on me ever since that first single.

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#100870 - Sat, 01 Jul 2017 11:44:56 Re: Question to the audience [Re: Vladimir]
EERO Offline
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Registered: Wed, 15 Jul 2009 19:00:00
Posts: 18
Loc: Massachusettts
I was in a record store in Providence, Rhode Island, (the late and sorely missed "Beacon Shops"), probably in 1978 with a dear friend who was as much of a vinyl junkie as I. We both bought a lot of records, sometimes on a whisper of knowledge about the artist. I held up
Ultravox! and asked him if he knew anything about it. "Nah, you don't want that" was his reply. A year later, I bought Systems of Romance based upon its review in Trouser Press. I lived alone in New York over the summer in a sublet student apartment and it was my soundtrack. I was hooked from then on. I of course went backward through the catalogue and bought Ultravox and HAHAHA soon after. I remind my friend occasionally that he steered me wrong so long ago.


Edited by EERO (Sat, 01 Jul 2017 11:46:58)

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#100871 - Sun, 02 Jul 2017 10:19:23 Re: Question to the audience [Re: Vladimir]
Poyns Offline
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Registered: Fri, 08 Apr 2005 19:00:00
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Loc: Tokyo
In a little house in the Manchester area in late December 1980, a ten-year-old boy listened to Piccadilly Radio's Top 100 of 1980. Tucked in there around number thirty-odd was a little ditty called "Sleepwalk".

I bought the Vienna album with my Christmas money shortly after New Year. 3.99 well spent.

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#100872 - Sun, 09 Jul 2017 21:54:44 Re: Question to the audience [Re: Vladimir]
Vladimir Offline
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Registered: Thu, 02 Dec 2004 20:00:00
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Loc: Russia, Moscow suburb, the cit...
Guys, thank you all so much for your contributions! Really interesting readings, enjoyed them very much!

I'd really like to know just what it was that made you notice the band and hold it in such high regard. Was it the sound, the songs, the clothes... I don't know, Midge's moustache, for example grin Why them and not any other performer, say, OMD, Numan or others... Any thoughts?

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#100876 - Tue, 11 Jul 2017 17:38:07 Re: Question to the audience [Re: Vladimir]
Ishikawa Offline
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Registered: Thu, 23 Apr 2009 19:00:00
Posts: 20
Loc: Scotland
Quote:
Was it the sound, the songs, the clothes...


All of the above - the image, the music, everything. The cover of "Ultravox!" sealed it for me; that post-punk, androgenous look, the neon sign, the cold, wet street.

Quote:
Why them and not any other performer, say, OMD, Numan or others...


Again, all of the above. I can't remember the exact order of "getting into", but I was a big fan of Numan, FoxxVox, OMD, Kraftwerk, Jarre and others.

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#100877 - Tue, 11 Jul 2017 19:55:44 Re: Question to the audience [Re: Vladimir]
Gwilym Offline
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Registered: Sun, 25 Jun 2006 19:00:00
Posts: 248
Loc: Wales.
They seemed to have a unique sound and atmosphere all their own, quite different from most other artists at the time. Also, those early dreamlike promo videos were something 'a bit different' and intriguing, moreso than the lurid videotaped efforts popular at the start of the 80s.

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