The Band I’m Into: The Sisters of Mercy

I did a poll on my Instagram story yesterday where I asked if you knew what band I was playing the music in the background and 71% said no. Clearly, that is what inspired me to create this post. To introduce this band to younger generations.

The band I was talking about were “The Sisters of Mercy”.

Very popular back in the 1980s and early the ’90s, The Sisters of Mercy are a British band with their origin coming from Leeds, West Yorkshire.
The band came out of British new wave post-punk scene and is often labeled as “a gothic one” although the frontman Andrew Eldritch often credits their influence coming from rock’n’roll and the music of Leonard Cohen. His song “Sisters of Mercy” was what ultimately gave the band an idea for their name.
They gave us three studio albums:

  • First and Last and Always (which includes hit song “Marian”)
  • Floodland (“Lucretia My Reflection” is perhaps their most recognizable song)
  • Vision Thing (Perhaps the album with the most hits, including “Temple of Love” and “Alice”).

In the 1980s, The Sisters of Mercy were what The 1975 or Arctic Monkeys are today. They were the major band, the one that was shaping the gothic subculture and overall scene of rock and roll.

The song I’ve been feeling at the moment is definitely “Marian”. There is something thrilling about that song, something that truly makes you wish you were alive back in the ’80s.
Fun fact is: the frontman of the band, Andrew Eldritch speaks over 5 languages and one of them is Croatian!The band came to life in Leeds, the UK in 1980 and it is still active today.

The original line-up consisted of:

  • Andrew Eldritch (frontman)
  • Gary Marx (guitar and vocals)
  • Craig Adams (bass)
  • Doktor Avalanche (drum machine).
After the failed debut single, the band was playing covers in local Leed clubs. After hearing their cover of “1969”, Iggy Pop greeted them personally since the song was originally performed by his former band “The Stooges”.By the end of 1981, the band got a new member, a guitarist Ben Gunn.In April of 1982, they released their second single “Body Electric” which was successful (hello, Lana Del Rey).With their own record label “Merciful Releases”, the band released more hit singles including “Alice” and “Good Land”.

British music magazine calls them the leaders of the gothic scene and Eldritch becomes the only possible successor of Peter Murphy (Bauhaus frontman).

In March of 1983, the band released their first EP and two months later another one which becomes their first success with the hits “Lights” and “Fix” among others.
The same year, the band got their first international tour in Europe and their first American tour in Los Angeles.
During this time, they had released a legendary single “Temple of Love” which meant the end of their independent label and the commercial success was on the rise.
Gunn decided to leave the band because of disagreements with other members and was replaced with Wayne Hussey on guitar.
In March of 1985, the band released their first debut album (five years after their existence!), “First And Last And Forever”.

Being the peak of Hussey and Marx’s composition powers and Eldritch’s dark vocals, the album reached number 4 in UK music chart.

Two months of the album’s release, Marx leaves the band saying that he couldn’t take Eldritch’s controlling behavior in the band, soon after the recording of the “Black Planet” music video, Adams leaves the band, too.
Marx and Adams decide to form their own band called “The Mission”.
Eldritch forms a new line-up under the name of “The Sisterhood” (the name stood for the fanbase of “The Sisters of Mercy”):
  • Andrew Eldritch (songwriter and composer)
  • Doktor Avalanche (drum machine)
  • Lucas Fox (drums)
  • Patricia Morrison (bass and vocals)
  • James Ray (vocals and guitar)
  • Alan Vega (synthesis and vocals).

And with his label “Merciful Release” they release the single “Giving Ground” which will be number one on the British independent chart.

 
In October of 1987, the new “The Sisters of Mercy” are formed (with the same members as “The Sisterhood”) and they release a hit single “This Corrosion” (number 7 in UK official music chart).
 
The second album “Floodland” would be released the following month. Album was well received with both public and the critics and by the end of the year, it was claimed as the best album of the year by most of the British music magazines (number 9 at UK music chart and number 101 in the US).The single from the album, “Dominion/Mother Russia” reached success (number 13 at UK official music chart). The music video had a high budget and it was filmed in Petra, Jordan.The last single, “Lucretia My Reflection” (one of my favorites, btw) peaked at number 20 at UK chart.
By the end of 1989, Patricia Morrison left the band. Because she didn’t receive the amount of money she was supposed to get (she got only £300). Still, she didn’t even play bass on the album and overall, didn’t have many credits.
In the new decade, October 1990, Eldritch got Tony James (bass) and Andreas Bruhn (guitars) as the new members.With the hit single “More” (number 14 at UK music chart), the band introduced the new line-up.In November of the same year, the band released their third album “Vision Thing”.The album had many guest stars including Dan Donovan (keyboards), John Perry (guitars) and singer Meggy Reilly.

With heavy rock sound and Eldritch’s brilliant sense of humor, the album peaked at number 11 in the UK music chart.

The same month, they went to their completely sold-out tour called “Tour Thing“. They were also in Zagreb (for my Croatian readers on November 11, 1990). The tour ended with a concert in London Wembley Arena where they performed with the former member Wayne Hussey to end the “corporate war”.The second single “Doctor Jeep” reached number 37 at UK music chart.By playing at Leeds University in February of 1991, they celebrate their 10th anniversary.On March 25, 1991 (my birthday, only eight years later!), they start their American part of the “Tour Thing” tour.

 

In August of 1991, they perf

orm as a leading group at the Reading Festival in the UK.

In October of the same year, Tony James left the group and started his solo career.

In 1992, the band decides to re-release their first independent singles from 1980-1983.

With the re-release of “Temple of Love“, the band reaches their greatest success. The single would be played in radios all over Britain and further and would go straight at number 3 at the UK music chart.

Not only would it be the most listened song of the year, but it would become one of the most played singles of the 1990s.

 

“Some Girls Wander by Mistake” would also be a success with peaking at number 5 at UK music chart.

Because of the disagreements between Eldritch and American label EastWest, the singles were never released in the US.

In June of 1992, Tim Bricheno left the group to start a solo career.

In 1993, Merciful Releases and EastWest get together as labels. The single “Under the Gun” reaches number 19 at the UK music chart. During this time, Adam Pearson would replace Bricheno.

In September of the same year, their greatest hits compilation (“A Slight Case of Overbombing… Greatest Hits Volume One”) reached number 14 at UK music chart.

In December of 1993, Andreas Bruhn left the band while Andrew Eldritch stopped being in control of the band thanks to his feud between the American record label.

There starts a four-year-long feud between Eldritch and record label EastWest.

 

After that period, “The Sisters of Mercy” still remain active, but their fame has never even come close to what it used to be.

For that matter, I think it’s not needed to talk about the following years, there are still there with remaining members being the everlasting Andrew Eldritch, Chris Catalyst, and Ben Christo.

During the present days, a band is a concert group and they had still performed at major venues. In 2011, the band had their 30th-anniversary tour across Europe, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand. But America, America is forever dead for “The Sisters of Mercy”.

The fact that the new generations are not really informed about this music is what inspired me to create this post and overall, change my blog theme a little bit.
Until now, I was mostly writing about sort of basic blogger things. It was all makeup, lifestyle, and fashion.
And I felt as if my blog didn’t even have a certain niche/image so far and I had to find myself and generate more interesting and overall, create better content for you.
I figured that I was pretty much acting the same as every other blogger and I was losing myself in the masses. I want to write controversy, rock and roll and still, fashion. Just a little different one.
And it’s not like I’m faking, even when I was dressing in flower prints, I was still listening to rock’n’roll, maybe I was just faking before.
So, from now on, what you can expect on my blog is still fashion, but with a little mix of rock’n’roll, adventure and fun mixed in together.
I decided to make my corner of the internet more interesting and entertaining than ever before.After all, we all want to relax and read fun articles. And I feel like I can truly deliver that to the internet.And also, expect to have me daily in your inbox, if you are subscribed to my newsletter. From now on, there will be blog posts published daily without stopping.If you are into fashion and rock’n’roll, Nora Di Leo blog is truly made for you.

I won’t be only covering music and reviewing the old times, I will write about my life, my fashion outfits, but underneath the aesthetic of dreamy rock’n’roll.

I hope you’ll enjoy it!

Find me on social media

Instagram: @noradileo

Facebook: Nora Di Leo

Twitter: @noradileo

Snapchat: @noradl25

Bloglovin’: Nora Di Leo

And for cooperations, contact me here: noradblog@gmail.com.

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