Martin Fry and his band ABC have traveled the world, thanks to the ‘80s hits “Poison Arrow” and “Be Near Me.” Despite the hundreds of locales, Fry vividly remembers a 1982 gig in Phoenix.
“We had a 14-piece band,” Fry says via telephone from England. “We had sparkly outfits. We were kind of ‘new romantics’ conquering America.
“Then we had to open for a heavy metal band. We had a lot of success in Britain and it was our first date in the U.S. That brought us down to earth.”
ABC is hoping to have better luck when it returns to the Valley to play “Lost ‘80s Live” with other stalwarts from that decade like Wang Chung, A Flock of Seagulls, Christopher Anton of Information Society and Boys Don’t Cry. It is set for Saturday, October 10, at Wild Horse Pass Hotel and Casino.
“I’ve played a lot of multi kind of band gigs before and it’s a lot of fun,” Fry says. “There’s a tiny little competitive edge between the acts, which means everybody’s up for it. They want to maximize the applause in a way.”
Besides playing gigs like “Lost ‘80s Live,” Fry has been writing new songs for a sequel to the album Lexicon of Love, which spawned the hits “Look of Love” and “Poison Arrow.” Orchestral music will be featured on the new collection.
“The album is about what it’s like to be the age I’m at now and looking at love and all its manifestations,” he says.
“I’m in my mid-50s, you have to be very inspired to make a record. I saw that New Order just put an album out. U2, too, of course. Those guys are my contemporaries. If you’re an artist in your 50s, you have to be on fire. You gotta show up with a very strong selection of songs to justify making a record because it’s a young man’s game—young women’s game—like Justin Bieber and Taylor Swift.”
Lost ‘80s Live, Wild Horse Pass Hotel and Casino’s Ovations Live Showroom, 5040 W. Wild Horse Pass Boulevard, Chandler, wingilariver.com, Saturday, October 10, 8 p.m., $39-$99