Fangoria are a charting, multi-gold-album-certified indie electro-pop duo from Spain led by Spanish-Mexican singer, DJ, guitarist, and television personality Olvido "Alaska" Gara (whose voice sounds like a dead cross between Marc Almond's and Annie Lennox's) and bassist/keyboardist Nacho Canut, after their previous outfit, Alaska y Dinarama (which also featured Carlos Berlanga), split up in the late '80s. The name Fangoria was chosen from the U.S.-based popular horror magazine of the same name. The pair scored a hit in Spain with first single "Hagamos Algo Superficial y Vulgar," prompting the success of their debut album Salto Mortal in 1990. After regional success in Spain with subsequent singles and a fan club-only covers set, Interferencias, in 1998, they teamed up with famed Spanish producer/multi-instrumentalist Carlos Jean for Una Temporada en el Infierno; they continued working with him for three more albums and countless EPs and singles that hit the charts repeatedly, pushing their reputation to the next level and breaking them in Western Europe and across Latin America. Their final collaboration was 2006's El Extraño Viaje. Fangoria signed to Warner Music Espana for 2009's chart topping Absolutamente, produced by Neal X and Tony James. It took home the Spanish Music Award for Pop Album of the Year and was certified gold. In 2010, the duo issued El Paso Trascendental del Vodevil a la Astracana. It was a retrospective with a twist: It featured newly recorded versions of music originally cut by their previous bands Alaska y Los Pegamoides and Alaska y Dinarama. 2016's Canciones Para Robots Románticos was co-produced by La Casa Azul and Jon Klein and saw Fangoria's songwriting and recording abilities grow. The quality of the release and its success across Latin America and Europe prompted Spanish and Mexican critics in particular to wonder why this band wasn't huge in the U.S. as well.
In 1977, Alaska, Nacho Canut, and Carlos Berlanga formed the band Alaska y los Pegamoides. In 1982, they changed the name to Alaska y Dinarama. The group was popular and influential during La Movida Madrileña, the countercultural artistic renaissance that emerged in the wake of fascist dictator Francisco Franco's death. Their best-known recordings include the singles "A Quien le Importa" and Ni Tú Ni Nadie." The latter was Spain's entry in the Eurovision Song Contest in 1985.
Berlanga left the group in 1989 and the band transformed into a duo. This time they adopted the name of the American horror film magazine Fangoria, abandoned rock & roll, and embraced electro-pop -- though they didn't completely drop the use of guitars -- as their M.O.
Fangoria debuted with the full-length Salto Mortal in 1990, that featured their first hit single, "Hagamos Algo Superficial y Vulgar." Moving further away from the new wave rock style, the duo released two experimental EPs called Un Dia Cualquiera en Vulcano 1.0 and Un Dia Cualquiera en Vulcano 2.0 in 1992. In 1997, Alaska and Canut co-produced and contributed to Carlos Berlanga's album Vía Satélite Alrededor De.
A year later, Fangoria released Interferencias comprised of tracks previously issued as fan club-only singles and EPs. In 1999, Fangoria teamed with Carlos Jean as producer for Una Temporada en el Infierno. Having helmed the first trip-hop records released in Spain, he was uniquely qualified (at the time) to embrace and execute the band's vision and encourage their continued songwriting development. Jean became a real partner for Fangoria. He oversaw the production of albums Naturaleza Muerta (2001), Arquitectura Efímera (2004), and El Extraño Viaje (2006). In 2010, the triple-disc compilation El Paso Trascendental del Vodevil a la Astracana was issued and broke the group internationally. It contained not only hits, but rarities and re-recordings of 15 previously issued songs. A live album, Operación Vodevil, followed in 2011. In 2013, Fangoria released Cuatricromía that pushed into the top of the charts and was followed by an international tour that brought them to Mexico for the first time. They earned a Spanish Music awards nomination for Pop Artist of the Year. The set was followed by the live Pianissimo in 2014.
While the band performed intermittently over the next couple of years, they didn't issue another studio record until 2016's Canciones Para Robots Románticos. Released by Warner in February, it reached the top of the Spanish charts in March and was certified gold. In 2019, Fangoria returned with two covers albums: Extrapolaciones Y Dos Preguntas 1989-2000 in February, and Extrapolaciones y Dos Preguntas 2001-2019 in October. Produced by La Casa Azul, the two sets also included a pair of new tracks. ~ Drago Bonacich