“I’m a great lover of the visual arts, particularly the mid-20th century movements”, Andy comments. The song is a metaphor for strength and artistic passion in the face of criticism and adversity. When times are tough, governments tend to cut funding for creativity, just when the arts are most needed to feed our souls. It seems fitting that the song and its eponymous album were created during the pandemic. It’s the band’s most political record and the culmination of their desire to be both STOCKHAUSEN and ABBA - born out of an impulse to explore new things during lockdown. Andy McCluskey admits: “I’ve rediscovered the creative power of total boredom”.
‘Bauhaus Staircase’ was written, recorded and mixed primarily by McCluskey and Paul Humphreys, who recently became a father to the second child. The other major influence was David Watts, best known as a Rock producer who oversaw the recent UK #1 album by Sheffield band THE REYTONS and mixed two tracks from the new OMD record.
From the beautiful film noir ballad ‘Veruschka’ to ‘Anthropocene’ - a term for the current epoch of earth development - to the dark ‘Evolution Of Species’ and the hectic ‘Kleptocracy’ - OMD’s biggest direct protest song - the new album is a wide-ranging, electronic, sonic masterpiece that lyrically deals with the topics of the future. The album closes with ‘Healing’ - a moment of contemplative calm and a rare OMD co-production, with lyrics by McCluskey’s friend, Liverpool singer-songwriter Caroline England and produced by ATOM TM.
OMD have sold a staggering 25 million singles and 15 million albums, establishing themselves as pioneers of electronic synths and one of Britain’s most popular Pop groups. Their 13 albums include reissues of ‘Orchestral Maneuvers In The Dark’ (1980), ‘Organization’ (1980), ‘Architecture & Morality’ (1981) and ‘Dazzle Ships’ (1983).
Actually, ORCHESTRAL MANEUVERS IN THE DARK should be in semi-retirement, performing classics like ‘Enola Gay’ and ‘Maid Of Orleans’ at nostalgic festivals like so many of their peers. Instead, they have created a fascinating album that is absolutely worthy of their oeuvre. While OMD were glad to have some help with the album, ‘Bauhaus Staircase’ is unmistakably the work of a duo who are still perfectly attuned 45 years after first performing at legendary Liverpool club Erics. They wouldn’t release the album if it didn’t live up to ‘The Punishment Of Luxury’s high standards.
“I’m very happy with what we did on this record,” McCluskey concludes. “I feel comfortable if this is the final statement from OMD.”
01. Bauhaus Staircase
03. Look At You Now
05. Where We Started
07. Slow Train
08. Don’t Go
10. Aphrodite’s Favourite Child
11. Evolution Of Species
Source: Press Release