Formed 1980, Sheffield, UK

White and Singleton started out as Vice Versa (4), who released an EP "Music 4" in 1979 and contributed the track "Genetic Warfare" to a compilation, "1980: The First Fifteen Minutes" before adding Fry to the lineup and mutating into ABC.

During the late '70s, Fry ran his own fanzine, Modern Drugs, while he attended Sheffield University. ABC formed in 1980, after Fry interviewed Vice Versa members Mark White (guitar) and Stephen Singleton (saxophone) for his fanzine. The two musicians asked Fry to join their band as a vocalist, and he soon became part of the group; the lineup also featured drummer David Robinson and bassist Mark Lickley.

Soon, Fry had taken control of the electronic band, he recruited Trevor Horn as producer to steer them in a more pop-oriented direction and renamed the group ABC. By the fall of 1981, the band had signed a record contract with Phonogram Records, which agreed to distribute ABC's own label, Neutron. ABC released their first single, "Tears Are Not Enough," in November; it peaked at number 19 on the U.K. charts.
SRM-1-4059 ABC - The Lexicon Of Love album art ABC The Lexicon Of Love (Album, Comp) Neutron Records SRM-1-4059 US 1982 Sell This Version
STAR 5340 ABC - Beauty Stab album art ABC Beauty Stab (Album) Neutron Records, Phonogram STAR 5340 South Africa 1983 Sell This Version
none ABC - King Biscuit Flower Hour album art Ultravox / ABC Ultravox / ABC - King Biscuit Flower Hour(LP, Transcription + LP, S/Sided, Transcription) King Biscuit Flower Hour none US 1983 Sell This Version
824 904-1Q ABC - How To Be A Zillionaire! album art ABC How To Be A Zillionaire! (Album) Neutron Records 824 904-1Q Germany 1985 Sell This Version
ABCDJ 12 ABC - How To Be A Zillionaire (Promotion Only - Album Sampler) album art ABC How To Be A Zillionaire (Promotion Only - Album Sampler)(LP, S/Sided, Promo, Smplr) Neutron Records ABCDJ 12 UK 1985 Sell This Version
832 391-4 ABC - Alphabet City album art ABC Alphabet City (Album) Neutron Records 832 391-4 Singapore, Malaysia & Hong Kong 1987 Sell This Version
422 838 646-1-Q-1, 838 646-1 ABC - Up album art ABC Up (Album) Neutron Records 422 838 646-1-Q-1, 838 646-1 US 1989 Sell This Version
CDPCS 7355, CDP 7968212, CDP7968212 ABC - Abracadabra album art ABC Abracadabra (Album) Parlophone, Parlophone CDPCS 7355, CDP 7968212, CDP7968212 Europe 1991 Sell This Version
none ABC - 5 Selections From Abracadabra album art ABC 5 Selections From Abracadabra(Cass, Advance, Smplr) Not On Label none UK 1991 Sell This Version
74321 45653 4 ABC - Skyscraping album art ABC Skyscraping (Album) Deconstruction 74321 45653 4 UK 1997 Sell This Version
ABC3 ABC - ABC album art ABC ABC(Cass, Promo, Smplr) Blatant ABC3 UK 1997 Sell This Version
BLATCD 01 ABC - Lexicon Of Live album art ABC Lexicon Of Live (Album) Blatant BLATCD 01 UK 1999 Sell This Version
VIBECD002 ABC - Traffic album art ABC Traffic (Album) Borough Music VIBECD002 UK 2008 Sell This Version
V 3150, 00602547882325 ABC - The Lexicon Of Love II album art ABC The Lexicon Of Love II (Album) Virgin EMI Records, Virgin EMI Records V 3150, 00602547882325 Europe 2016 Sell This Version

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September 17, 2014
thanks your note Crijevo, I was unaware of their previous incarnation of Vice Versa, I shall go hunting for some of that now!
not sure if the state of perfection can ever be achieved, but I think it's fair to say that ABC come very close with not just one but many of their beautifully crafted creations.
a quality act indeed!


January 30, 2003
ABC is a perfectly simple name for a group who swore to write perfect pop songs ever since... However, it is a less known their origin in Sheffield avantgarde scene called Vice Versa (one of the most perfect all-time names to call a band), which only points out to their perfectionist stance as truly embraced (and eventually disappointed) by punk and its cyclical fashions (their own anti-consumerist anthem 'Artists at War')... The way The Human League sold their soul, Vice Versa were their dark twin brother; the way 'Dare' collided down the mainstream corridor with Philip Oakey unable to repeat it again ever after, Vice Versa turned from the incredibly chaotic minimalist electronic noise-some into a more soulful fraction ABC that immediately striked against the tide with their own organised sound structure intended to a wider pop-market. Some called it pretentious and cynical. But it's not really. It's a perfect product. 'The Lexicon of Love' might remain a curse of momentary trends that fitted in perfectly at the time for the group, as their sound heavily progressed throughout the past twenty years in various directions, still they make it all quite timeless and appearently memorable experience.

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