About Soft Cell
Synth-pop duo Soft Cell is best known for their 1981 single “Tainted Love,” though the group had twelve Top 40 hits in their native UK.
• “Tainted Love” was an obscure Northern soul track when Gloria Jones first released it as a B-side in 1965. Soft Cell’s version was a massive hit that topped the singles chart in Britain and spent a then-record 43 consecutive weeks on the Billboard Hot 100 in the US, peaking at No. 8.
• Soft Cell formed when Marc Almond and David Ball met as university students in Leeds, England, in 1977. They recorded their debut EP, 1980’s Mutant Moments, with a loan from Ball’s mother.
• Songs on the duo’s first full-length album, 1981’s Non-Stop Erotic Caberet, reflected their penchant for squalid sexual imagery, which didn’t stop the album from going to No. 5 in Britain and No. 22 in the US.
• Along with “Tainted Love,” the album yielded two additional Top 5 singles in the UK: “Bedsitter” and “Say Hello, Wave Goodbye,” which singer David Gray later covered on his 1998 album White Ladder.
• Soft Cell’s next two albums, 1982’s Non Stop Ecstatic Dancing, and 1983’s The Art of Falling Apart, both peaked at No. 6 in the UK. After one more album, 1984’s This Last Night in Sodom, Almond and Ball split up to work on other projects.
• The pair reunited in 2001 for a string of concerts and eventually an album, 2002’s Cruelty Without Beauty.
• Ball said in 2019 that the duo had been working on a new Soft Cell album.