Formed 1970.

US rock and pop duo, The Mael Brothers

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Sparks join Radcliffe & Maconie in the studio

Ron and Russell Mael, aka Sparks, join Mark and Stuart in the studio.

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Sparks is an American rock band formed in Los Angeles in 1971 by brothers Ron (keyboards) and Russell Mael (vocals), renamed from Halfnelson, formed in 1968. Known for their quirky approach to songwriting, Sparks' music is often accompanied by intelligent, sophisticated, and acerbic lyrics, and an idiosyncratic, theatrical stage presence, typified in the contrast between Russell's wide-eyed hyperactive frontman antics and Ron's sedentary scowling. They are also noted for Russell Mael's falsetto voice and Ron Mael's keyboard style.

Though the band's long career has seen them successfully pioneer many different musical genres; including glam rock, power pop, electronic dance music, and most recently chamber pop, Sparks have created their own unique musical universe. While achieving chart success in various countries around the world including United Kingdom, Germany, France, and the United States, they have enjoyed a cult following since their first releases. During the late 1970s, when in collaboration with Giorgio Moroder (and Telex subsequently), Sparks reinvented themselves as an synthpop duo, and abandoned the traditional rock band line up. Their frequently changing styles and visual presentations have kept the band at the forefront of modern, artful pop music.

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BBC Reviews

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