The Human League, Margate, Music News, TotalNtertainment, Marc Almond, Dreamland

The Human League to play Dreamland, Margate

Don’t miss them on Friday 21st July 2023 at Dreamland, Margate. Get your tickets below

An iconic band, an iconic venue: The Human League play Dreamland, Margate, on Friday 21st July 2023

The Human League: a band best known for a song they never wanted to release as a single but that went on to become the biggest seller of 1981. “Don’t You Want Me”, a clever duet examining the death of a love affair from both perspectives, also proved once and for all that the best Christmas number ones aren’t about Christmas at all

Over forty years later, The Human League continue to make and share the best of electronic music, their songs stirring up memories but, unlike some of the 80s nostalgia tours doing the rounds, without being tarnished by retro cheesiness.

That’s why you won’t want to miss the original line-up of Joanne Catherall, Phil Oakey and Susan Ann Sulley playing the Scenic Stage at Dreamland, Margate, on Friday 21st July 2023. The Scenic Stage is at the heart of this unique all-you-can-treat seaside venue which, with its backdrop of Instagrammable retro amusements and vintage rides, is fast becoming the UK’s coolest music venue.

There has always been a pleasing straightforwardness, a Dadaist blankness, to the League: what you see is what you get, prime numbers in a world of complex equations. Even Oakey’s handsome Yorkshire accent was never modified to a mid-Atlantic drawl for the sake of radio digestibility and it’s notable that the band never left their hometown of Sheffield for the lure of London.

Notable, too, is that the League never broke up or quit the music scene. Following their 1981 platinum selling Dare, they released a pioneering album of remixes, Love and Dancing, along with two fantastic singles – the meta-Motown “Mirror Man” and the juicy, jubilant “(Keep Feeling) Fascination” – before the successor album, Hysteria, in 1984.

The group continued to be a successful singles act with hits such as “Louise” and “Life On Your Own”. They often evoked the golden age of pop with spoken narrative (“When we were apart, I was human too…”) and self-aware personal touches that frequently broke the fourth wall (“This is Phil talking…”). There was also the oft-derided “The Lebanon”, which to Oakey’s perverse pride recently won the BBC Radio 1 Worst Lyric Of All Time poll for the couplet “And where there used to be some shops/Is where the snipers sometimes hide”.

Later the band surrendered a degree of creative control, a move which Sulley believes saved their career, by hooking up with R&B producers and former Prince acolytes Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, whose Flyte Tyme team had recently scored big with Janet Jackson’s album Nasty. The duo wrote another both-sides-of-the-story duet, “Human”, for the League and the song became a transatlantic smash.

“Human” was the group’s last significant hit for a while but even at the lowest ebb of their commercial success, the League maintained their quality: listen to “Heart Like A Wheel” from turn-of-the-nineties album Romantic? and it holds its own with the best of their back catalogue.

To many people, the joyous “Tell Me When?”, a top ten hit from the 1995 album Octopus, marked a comeback for the band but truth is the League never went away. Today they’re planning a tenth studio album and remain “tall, tall, tall, as big as a wall, wall, wall” as their 1979 “Empire State Human” lyrics put it.

Don’t miss them on Friday 21st July 2023 at Dreamland, Margate. Get your tickets at – https://link.dice.fm/Ye1b480a2f7e