Passings: Steven Young of Colourbox and M/A/R/R/S

by VVN Music

Steven Young, co-founder of the English electronic groups Colourbox and M/A/R/R/S, has passed away according to the band's label 4AD:
It’s with much sadness that we share the news that reached us today that Steven Young from Colourbox and M/A/R/R/S has passed away.

One of the label’s true pioneers, Steven leaves behind an incredible legacy and will forever be in our hearts. Our thoughts go to his brother Martyn, their family and his friends.
Steven began his musical career in the group The Nobodyz, touring with the likes of the Psychedelic Furs. He and his brother, Martyn, formed Colourbox along with Ian Robbins and Debian Curry in 1982, releasing their first single Breakdown/Tarantula. The next year, Curry and Robins left and were replaced by vocalist Lorita Grahame who rerecorded the two songs for the band's debut EP Colourbox (1983 / #8 U.K.).

The band continued to refine their eclectic sound over the next two years leading up to the release of their first full length album, also titled Colourbox, which went to number 1 on the British charts on the strength of hit singles Say You (1984 / #7 U.K.), Punch (1984 / #15 U.K.) and The Moon is Blue (1985 / #3 U.K.).

Colourbox would not release another album but, in 1986, they put out two singles on the same day, both of which became hits. Baby I Love You So peaked at 4 in the U.K. and The Official Colourbox World Cup Theme went to 6.

In 1987, Colourbox joined up with the band A.R. Kane to form M/A/R/R/S. Each band recorded a song and then gave it to the other for additional input before being released. Kane's Antina had added drumming by Steven while Martyn's track Pump Up the Volume had the addition of guitar from Kane. Of the two, Pump Up the Volume became an international hit, going to number 1 in Britain, New Zealand and on the U.S. Dance Club chart, number 6 in Australia and 13 on the U.S. Hot 100.

Colourbox never recorded again after Pump Up the Volume after becoming involved in legal actions involving their use of various samples. While Martyn went on to do some producing, Steven only occasionally worked again in music, working on projects for This Mortal Coil, Moose and Kid Congo Powers.

1 comment

pinball said...

Truly tragic loss and of course, with so many passings of influential and maverick talents this year already, it's also not surprising to discover that I only found out about this today - because it was barely mentioned in the same breath as the other, more high profile, artists who have gone.....

To clarify two things however - the chart positions of all the releases here are UK Independent Charts - not the official BBC Top 75 singles, and the image accompanying this newspiece is actually that of fellow original Colourbox member Ian Robbins, and NOT Steven.

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