Bands we miss – Client

Client got bolder and stronger with each new release until they imploded. And even at that there was promise for the future but here we are at the close of 2012, and it feels like we’re no closer to having a sense of Client’s future than ever before.

We’re getting ahead of ourselves. Client were a gritty/dirty electronic duo from the UK, originally the only-ever signing to Andy Fletcher’s (Depeche Mode) Toast Hawaii label. They released four albums that eventually showed a band fully aware of what it wanted to be. Then up and left Sarah Blackwood (Client B) who reassembled with her Dubstar bandmates leaving “Client A”, i.e. Kate Holmes to find a new vocalist or call it a day. She recruited former Technique bandmate Xan Tylor to take the mic and over a year later…nothing. Holmes has been active on Twitter but mostly talking about her Client clothing operation, the music has clearly taken a backseat, the Client website not updated in over a year and no news of new music on the horizon. Once gets the sense of a band in stasis. And that makes this blogger sad.

Client managed to achieve that rare thing in electronic music – to carve out a piece of the genre and make it all their own. No one sounded quite like them. They borrowed heavily from the golden age of electronic music, but never felt derivative. They managed to do something achingly familiar while still sounding wholly original. And with each successive record they got more and more interesting. From the Kraftwerkian minimalism of their self-titled debut, to their warmer and lusher City, where we also started to get a real sense of their dirty side as a kind of post-modern Soft Cell; to the more complex albeit more uneven Heartland; to the fully-realized Command, an electronic triumph. Client E came and went, mostly looking moody and ostensibly playing some bass; the matching role-play uniforms were ever-present; they started and then parted ways with Mute Records; and they continued to prolifically produce always-compelling tunes that matched smart lyrics with terrific electro-melodies.

Usually the Bands We Miss series focuses on bands we know to have gone to the great jukebox in the sky, but occasionally there’s one that’s merely MIA. Doesn’t mean we miss it any less, just that the spectre of new product feels increasingly distant and we wonder if there’s anything left to come. Eyes to the sky, watching, hoping they aren’t done with us, but as we wait we miss them true enough…

Watch: Radio

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2 Responses to “Bands we miss – Client”

  1. Client without Sarah Blackwood is not really Client. Her voice was important for the band. For me the band is finished.

  2. TheirBiggestFan Says:

    Client as we know them are sadly no more. A “new” Client will be very different. Mute is rumoured to release a compilation in their “An Introduction To…” series sometime this year.

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