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Rock - Paru le 1 janvier 2003 | EMI Marketing

Distinctions Discothèque Idéale Qobuz
Après un premier album très prometteur, les OMD ont mis la barre encore plus haut avec ce second effort paru en 1980. Organisation fut la preuve de leur capacité à produire des chansons à la fois innovantes et populaires. Le seul single du disque Enola Gay en est le meilleur symbole : terriblement entêtant et malin, le titre traverse les âges sans prendre une ride. Mais le groupe ne se repose pas que sur un seul succès : le reste des chansons de l’album sont toutes aussi soignées, présentant un pop/rock dansant porté par la voix profonde de McCluskey et par les synthétiseurs qui viennent s’ajouter subtilement à cette recette pour y apporter une sonorité typique des années 80. © LG/Qobuz
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Rock - Paru le 1 janvier 1988 | Virgin Records

Andy McCluskey and Paul Humphreys make up Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark, who were responsible for some of the catchiest and brightest synth pop that the '80s had to offer. O.M.D.'s material was a step above other keyboard pop music of the time, thanks to the combination of intelligently crafted hooks and colorful rhythms that bounced and jittered with pristine charm. Their squeaky-clean brilliancy initiated by both their synthesizers and subdued yet attractive vocal styles gave them a more mature sound over bands like Duran Duran and A Flock of Seagulls, who were attracting a younger audience. The Best of O.M.D. is an excellent compilation of their polished music, starting out with less provocative material like the basic electronic wash of "Electricity" and the bare but ebullient fervor of "Enola Gay." As this set moves along, so does the craftiness of their work, which is evident on tighter sounding songs like "Tesla Girls" and "Locomotion," where the intricacy of their formula begins to take a more resounding shape. O.M.D.'s best work came from 1985's Crush album, which harbored the midnight airiness found in "So in Love" as well as the adolescent innocence that streamed its way through "Secret," which are two of the best tracks on this set. Even though "If You Leave" was the highlight of Pretty in Pink's soundtrack, its adult feel and smooth transition from stanza to chorus makes it their most memorable song. With only four singles reaching the Top 40 in the '80s, all included here, the 18 tracks that make up this compilation prove that O.M.D.'s music was far more consistent and illuminating than the charts represent. © Mike DeGagne /TiVo
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Rock - Paru le 1 janvier 2003 | EMI Marketing

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Rock - Paru le 1 janvier 2003 | Virgin Catalogue

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Électronique - Paru le 30 avril 1984 | UMC (Universal Music Catalogue)

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Smarting from Dazzle Ships' commercial failure, the band had a bit of a rethink when it came to their fifth album -- happily, the end result showed that the group was still firing on all fours. While very much a pop-oriented album and a clear retreat from the exploratory reaches of previous work, Junk Culture was no sacrifice of ideals in pursuit of cash. In comparison to the group's late-'80s work, when it seemed commercial success was all that mattered, Junk Culture exhibits all the best qualities of OMD at their most accessible -- instantly memorable melodies and McCluskey's distinct singing voice, clever but emotional lyrics, and fine playing all around. A string of winning singles didn't hurt, to be sure; indeed, opening number "Tesla Girls" is easily the group's high point when it comes to sheer sprightly pop, as perfect a tribute to obvious OMD inspirational source Sparks as any -- witty lines about science and romance wedded to a great melody (prefaced by a brilliant, hyperactive intro). "Locomotion" takes a slightly slower but equally entertaining turn, sneaking in a bit of steel drum to the appropriately chugging rhythm and letting the guest horn section take a prominent role, its sunny blasts offsetting the deceptively downcast lines McCluskey sings. Meanwhile, "Talking Loud and Clear" ends the record on a reflective note -- Cooper's intra-verse sax lines and mock harp snaking through the quiet groove of the song. As for the remainder of the album, if there are hints here and there of the less-successful late-'80s period, at other points the more adventurous side of the band steps up. The instrumental title track smoothly blends reggae rhythms with the haunting mock choirs familiar from earlier efforts, while the elegiac, Humphreys-sung "Never Turn Away" and McCluskey's "Hard Day" both make for lower-key highlights. © Ned Raggett /TiVo
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Électronique - Paru le 4 octobre 2019 | UMC (Universal Music Catalogue)

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Rock - Paru le 1 janvier 2003 | EMI Marketing

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Rock - Paru le 1 janvier 2008 | Virgin Catalogue

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Rock - Paru le 1 janvier 1985 | Virgin Catalogue

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Pop - Paru le 1 septembre 2017 | RCA Local

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Contrairement à ce que diront certaines mauvaises langues, Orchestral Manœuvres In The Dark, OMD pour les intimes, ne fut pas juste le groupe d’un hit, le tubesque Enola Gay. Derrière ce grand classique de la synth pop new wave qui plafonna au sommet des charts à la fin de 1980, la bande d’Andy McCluskey et Paul Humphreys cache une bonne dizaine d’albums. Sans surprise, le treizième, The Punishment Of Luxury, navigue en eaux claires. On retrouve donc cette sonorité 100% OMD héritée de Kraftwerk mais embarquée sur un terrain beaucoup plus pop. Reste à fermer les yeux pour avoir la sensation d’être propulsé au cœur des années 80. © CM/Qobuz
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Rock - Paru le 11 juin 1991 | Virgin Records

With the split between McCluskey and the rest of the band resolved by the former's decision to carry on with the band's name on his own, the question before Sugar Tax's appearance was whether the change would spark a new era of success for someone who clearly could balance artistic and commercial impulses in a winning fashion. The answer, based on the album -- not entirely. The era of Architecture and Morality wouldn't be revisited anyway, for better or for worse, but instead of delightful confections with subtle heft like "Enola Gay" and "Tesla Girls," on Sugar Tax McCluskey is comfortably settled into a less-spectacular range of songs that only occasionally connect. Like fellow refugees from the early '80s such as Billy Mackenzie and Marc Almond, McCluskey found himself bedeviled in the early '90s with an artistic block that resulted in his fine singing style surrounded by pedestrian arrangements and indifferent songs. There was one definite redeeming number at the start: "Sailing on the Seven Seas," with glam-styled beats underpinning a giddy, playful romp that showed McCluskey still hadn't lost his touch entirely, and which became OMD's biggest single at home since "Souvenir." Beyond that, though, the album can best be described as pleasant instead of memorable, an exploration by McCluskey into calmer waters recorded entirely by himself outside of some guitar from Stuart Boyle. Without his longtime bandmates to help him, the results lack an essential spark (Holmes' drumming creativity being especially missed). In a tip of the hat to a clear source of inspiration, Sugar Tax includes a pleasant cover of Kraftwerk's "Neon Lights," with guest vocals by Christine Mellor, while "Apollo XI" uses Dazzle Ships-styled sample collages made up of moon-landing broadcasts, though the song itself isn't much. Even at its most active -- "Call My Name" and "Pandora's Box" -- Sugar Tax is for the most part just there. © Ned Raggett /TiVo
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Rock - Paru le 1 janvier 1983 | Virgin Catalogue

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Rock - Paru le 1 janvier 1986 | Virgin Records

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Rock - Paru le 1 janvier 1993 | Virgin Catalogue

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Rock - Paru le 1 janvier 1996 | Virgin Records

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Électronique - Paru le 8 avril 2013 | BMG Rights Management (UK) Ltd

À l'automne 2010, Orchestral Manoeuves in the Dark (OMD pour les aficionados) revenait sur le devant de la scène avec un album roboratif, History of Modern, creuset des tendances abordées par le duo en trois décennies et quelques pauses. Sans renouer avec la profondeur de Dazzle Ships (1983), le duo emblématique d'une synth pop à la fois populaire et curieuse se remettait sur les rails d'une forte concurrence contemporaine. Moins hédonistes, ironiques et dansants que Pet Shop Boys, Paul Humphreys et Andy McCluskey s'inscrivent dans le sillon historique de New Order tout en conservant leurs spécificités (dominante electro, simplicité mélodique, samples).Passé le ludique « Please Remain Seated » d'ouverture, ce deuxième album du redécollage riche de douze pistes s'avère une excursion en terrain connu et parfaitement balisé pour les amateurs. La longue balade souterraine qui suit en « Metroland » laisse resurgir la petite madeleine proustienne de la charnière 1970/1980, entre Kraftwerk et Simple Minds (pour le chant habité) tandis que « Night Café », roule tranquillement au bord du registre évanescent. OMD retrouve les accents de Junk Culture plutôt que Dazzle Ships duquel il est censé être la suite. Après quelques amabilités de circonstance, les interchangeables « The Futre Will Be Silent », « Helen of Troy » et « Our System », arrive le plus ambitieux « Kissing the Machine », écrit en collaboration avec Karl Bartos, récent démissionnaire de Kraftwerk, pour son album Esperanto de 1993. Le titre revu et corrigé se voit enrichi de la voix métallique de Claudia Brücken (Propaganda). Hormis « Dresden », la tension redescend lentement sur la fin d'un album auquel manque la facette la plus exploratrice du duo, au dépens d'une pop linéaire. © ©Copyright Music Story Loïc Picaud 2017
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Rock - Paru le 1 janvier 2001 | Virgin Records

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Pop - Paru le 15 décembre 2017 | RCA Local

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Électronique - Paru le 4 décembre 2020 | UMC (Universal Music Catalogue)