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Sparks

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There are at least three bands named Sparks.

One is an American rock and pop music band formed in Los Angeles in 1970 by brothers Ron Mael (keyboards) and Russell Mael (vocals), initially under the name Halfnelson. Best known for their quirky approach to song writing, Sparks’ music is often accompanied by cutting and acerbic lyrics, and an idiosyncratic stage presence, typified in the contrast between Russell’s wide-eyed hyperactive frontman antics and Ron’s sedentary scowling.

The band’s long career has seen them successfully adopt many different musical genres; including , , dance music and mainstream . Despite these many styles, a recognizable “Sparks sound” remains throughout, and they have enjoyed a large cult following since their first releases. Sparks have been highly influential on the development of popular music, in particular on the late 1970s scene, when in collaboration with Giorgio Moroder (and Telex subsequently), they reinvented themselves as an electronic pop duo, and abandoned the traditional rock band line up. In contrast to the esteem in which they are held by such peers as Depeche Mode, New Order, Pet Shop Boys and They Might Be Giants, who all cite Sparks as a major influence, their almost constantly changing styles and unique visual presentations have sometimes seen them dismissed as a novelty act.

The 2002 release of Lil’ Beethoven, their self-described “genre-defining opus”, and 2006’s Hello Young Lovers (their 20th studio album) have brought Sparks renewed critical and commercial success, and seen them continue to “steer clear of pop conventions.”

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  • Jijifranko

    I'm convinced that if the Mael brothers were melded into a single entity the result would be Benedict Cumberbatch. [3] - Ta, previous account. I still agree with myself.

    12 Jul 4:16pm Reply
  • sexandnoise

    http://www.last.fm/group/Russell+Mael

    6 Jul 3:08pm Reply
  • songfactslastfm

    "Jagger, at that time fully bearded, took me to one end of the control room and erratically strummed an acoustic guitar in my ear." - An erstwhile member of Sparks, Jet and Radio Stars, Martin Gordon shares some fascinating stories from across his 40 years in music, including what he got up to in Paris with The Rolling Stones in '79: http://www.songfacts.com/blog/interviews/martin_gordon/

    18 Jun 11:20am Reply
  • ohsweatyhands

    you can't JUST listen to the music. you can't JUST listen to the words. You have to take everything in at the same time or you're going to miss something really fun! [2]

    18 May 5:59pm Reply
  • zoraxx

    you can't JUST listen to the music. you can't JUST listen to the words. You have to take everything in at the same time or you're going to miss something really fun!

    11 May 11:32pm Reply
  • Rissacakes

    Still the loves of my life.

    28 Apr 7:00am Reply
  • heidavey

    http://open.soundrop.fm/s/XURsmThkHwnLuiCI I made a Sparks Soundrop room - If you have Soundrop, come visit, add tracks, vote up your favourites.

    31 Mar 9:46am Reply
  • MAJ9696

    Oh man, I really hope there's a summer tour. I sadly missed out on the two hands one mouth tour. Really excited for the new Sparks album(s)!

    1 Mar 6:50am Reply
  • Steambull

    Oh - excellent! o/ Allsparks.com's news section isn't updated that frequently, maybe I should read the forums more carefully for news.

    28 Feb 6:49am Reply
  • AledMCR

    Also there's talk of a summer tour.

    27 Feb 11:26pm Reply
  • AledMCR

    Well it's already been revealed that they're recording an album with Franz Ferdinand and that their next studio album (the one with the as-of-yet unknown narrative) is also due this year. So there's another 2 albums, at least!

    27 Feb 11:25pm Reply
  • Steambull

    They've done it all, in ways that no other popular music act has. Perhaps the release of the box set is a sign of retirement? Or will they surprise us once more, like they did so many times during the last 10 years?

    26 Feb 12:59am Reply
  • EOLAOIRE

    I want 83 new albums

    25 Feb 4:27pm Reply
  • Rissacakes

    Sparks are still the absolute kings of my world. Once you fall in love with them, you'll be a lifer.

    19 Feb 6:35am Reply
  • DamienAThornton

    I'm convinced that if one melded the Mael brothers into a single entity the result would be Benedict Cumberbatch. [2]

    14 Feb 3:08am Reply
  • slonoedov

    ААА лук ат ми нау филлин эмоушэн ААА лук ат ми нау лук ат ми нау

    6 Feb 4:53pm Reply
  • HaHaHaYoureDead

    какой чертовски интересный музон, ничем не хуже боуи, жаль только, что находится в тени.

    1 Feb 12:35pm Reply
  • helvettt

    Their self-titled album is a masterpiece. On top level with Queen and Roxy Music.

    31 Jan 3:46am Reply
  • retro_trash

    @MgrQuetzal: There is a resemblance, I never noticed!

    27 Jan 12:39am Reply
  • Nakkinak

    a band like a Tezuka comic

    15 Jan 1:31am Reply
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