Telex (band)


Telex (band)

Infobox musical artist
Name = Telex


Img_capt =
Img_size =
Background = group_or_band
Alias =
Origin = flagicon|BEL Belgium
Genre = Electronic music
Synthpop
Electro
Techno
Years_active = 1978–present
(hiatus in new music
between 1986-2006) [ [http://www.telex-music.com/faq.html Telex Official FAQ] ]

Label =
URL = [http://www.telex-music.com Official Website]
Notable_instruments =
The Belgian synthpop group Telex was formed in 1978 by Marc Moulin, Dan Lacksman and Michel Moers, with the intention of "Making something really European, different from rock, without guitar - and the idea was electronic music." [Telex Podcast Episode #1 http://www.telex-music.com/audio.html] Mixing the aesthetics of disco, punk and experimental electronic music, they released a stripped-down synthesized cover version of "Twist à St. Tropez" by Les Chats Sauvages.

They followed up with an ultra-slow cover of "Rock Around the Clock", a hilariously relaxed and dispassionate version of one-hit-wonder Plastic Bertrand's punk song "Ça Plane Pour Moi", and a perversely mechanical cover of "Dance to the Music", originally by Sly Stone.

Like Kraftwerk, Telex built their music entirely from electronic instruments, and the sounds of the two groups have a certain similarity. However, unlike Kraftwerk's studied Teutonic irony, Telex favour a more joyously irreverent humour.

Their debut album, "Looking for Saint Tropez", featured the worldwide hit single "Moskow Diskow", one of the first ever electronic dance/pop songs.

In 1980 Telex's manager asked them to enter for the Eurovision Song Contest. They entered, and were eventually sent to the finals, although they apparently hoped to come last: "We had hoped to finish last, but Portugal decided otherwise. We got ten points from them and finished on the 19th spot" (Marc Moulin) [ [http://houbi.com/belpop/groups/telex.htm Telex - The Belgian Pop & Rock Archives ] ]

Their song "Euro-Vision" was a cheerful bleepy song with deliberately banal lyrics about the contest itself.

The Eurovision audience seemed unsure how to react to the performance, and after the band stopped playing there was mostly stunned silence, with scattered polite applause; Marc Moulin took a photograph of the bewildered audience. The band walked off amidst sounds of muttering. A mark of the confusion caused by the performance was when vote-counting began, and Greece awarded Belgium three points, the announcer thought she had misheard and tried to award the points to The Netherlands.

All of this was clearly bad news for the band's English record label, Virgin Records, who were trying to pass them off as part of the New Romantic movement. The self-mockery of tracks like "We Are All Getting Old" didn't help either.

For their third album, "Sex", Telex enlisted the suddenly hip US group Sparks to help write the lyrics. However, the band still refused to play live and preferred to remain anonymous — common practice in the techno music artists they later inspired, but unusual in 1981. The fourth Telex album, "Wonderful World", was barely distributed.

In 1986, Atlantic Records, perhaps surprisingly, signed Telex and released "Looney Tunes". By then, the band's earlier sound had influenced many other groups, but they had abandoned it in favor of sampling and a more up-tempo humorous style. "Temporary Chicken", for example, was a strange joke track about a man so desperate for work that he accepts a part time job in a chicken costume. It was social commentary, but so bizarre as to be almost incomprehensible to most listeners; the album found little commercial success.Fact|date=January 2008

In 1989, Telex revisited all of their old tracks and remixed them to resemble the house music and other genres that had followed in the wake of Telex and others' early pioneering work in electronic pop. The result was "Les Rhythmes Automatiques", which apparently inspired Kraftwerk to do the same for their album "The Mix" in 1991.Dubious

After almost two decades of silence, Telex made a come-back in March 2006 with "How Do You Dance" on EMI. It comprised five original compositions as well as five covers. Their last release, as of 2006, is a cover of "On the Road Again", originally by Canned Heat. They also began producing remixes for other artists' single releases, including "A Pain that I'm Used To" by Depeche Mode and "Minimal" by the Pet Shop Boys.

Discography

Albums

*1979: "Looking For St. Tropez"
*1980: "Neurovision"
*1981: "Sex" (released in some countries as "Birds and Bees" with a slightly altered tracklisting)
*1984: "Wonderful World"
*1986: "Looney Tunes"
*2006: "How Do You Dance?"

Compilations and Remix albums

*1989: "Les Rhythmes Automatiques" (album of re-recorded back-catalogue))
*1993: "Belgium...One Point" (a box set of the first five albums plus bonus tracks)
*1994: "Is Release A Humour? - We Love Telex" (Japan only. remixed by Japanese DJs)
*1998: "I Don't Like Music" (remixed by Carl Craig and others)
*1998: "I Don't Like Remixes: Original Classics 78-86" (a 'best-of' compilation)
*1999: "I (Still) Don't Like Music Remixes Vol. 2" (DJ remixes)

References

External links

* [http://www.telex-music.com Official website (www.telex-music.com)]
* [http://users.skynet.be/goedseel/telex-hp.html Telex extended discography]


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