When reunited ’80s legends Visage play a gig in Wales later this month the line-up will include Welsh New Romantic icon Steve Strange – but there will be one noticeable absentee.
The group, famed for such hits as Fade To Grey, formed in 1978 with the nucleus of Steve and former Rich Kids member Rusty Egan.
However, there will be no Rusty at Cardiff’s Glee Club concert – and there are clearly issues between the two former partners, with Steve recounting business requests and heated social media exchanges, including derogatory comments about Steve’s vocal skills.
“It’s really ridiculous. People don’t want to hear about it! It’s undignified and I’m angry with myself for getting involved,” he says, adding: “It’s childish tittle tattle. I’m so glad he’s not involved in this project.”
Focusing on the future, Steve’s attitude seems best summed up by the cover shot of new Visage album Hearts And Knives which depicts him peeling back his Fade To Grey “mask” to reveal a new image.
“It’s a break with the past into the new Visage,” he says. “I want something that’s perfect, I’m a perfectionist.”
Attempts to re-start the band have continued intermittently through the years, with no solid, sustained success – until now. There’s even talk of continent-hopping tours with the full band, something the original incarnation could never quite muster.
“Every member, everyone wants to be on the road, which is very exciting for me, especially as I was so frustrated before due to the commitment people had to other bands,” says Steve.
“So I was the only one out there, being in four countries in one day. I’d leave Heathrow at 6am and be in Germany at 9pm, and in between I’d have done a TV show in Paris, then flown to Italy or Spain before ending up in Germany for another TV show. It was crazy!”
Perhaps unsurprisingly, given the band’s studio-bound history, the forthcoming Cardiff show is Steve’s first live appearance with Visage on home turf.
“We’ll play like we played in Hoxton,” he says, referring to their recent London show which sold out, with 400 others unable to get in.
“Lauren (new vocalist Lauren Duvall) adds a fifth dimension on the Visage album she’s a Swansea girl, she’s very wise for her age. It’ll be a good show.”
Visage play the Glee Club, Cardiff on Sunday, July 21. Tickets from the box office on 0871 472 0400 or via www.glee.co.uk