| September 1981|
The Luxury Gap
| 50:32 ¹|
| Sheffield, Maison Rouge|
British Electric Foundation
Heaven 17 albums, Electropop albums
Penthouse and Pavement is the debut studio album by the English synthpop band Heaven 17. It was originally released in September 1981, on the label Virgin.
"(We Don't Need This) Fascist Groove Thang" was released as a single, but did not achieve chart success partly due to a ban by the BBC. The album sold reasonably well, but was not a great commercial success on release. It has since been regarded as "an important outing", is included in the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die, and was re-released in 2010 in a three-disc special edition. The title track was included on the soundtrack of the 1993 erotic thriller film Sliver.
Whilst the singles charted poorly, the album charted at No. 14 and remained in the Top 100 for 77 weeks. It was certified gold (100,000 copies sold) by the BPI in October 1982.
Dan LeRoy in a retrospective review for AllMusic felt that the album combined electropop with good melodies, and that Glenn Gregory was able to handle the "overtly left-wing political" lyrics without sounding "pretentious".
The album is included in the musical reference book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.
All tracks written by Martyn Ware, Ian Craig Marsh, and Glenn Gregory.Additional tracks
2010 3-disc special edition
The album was reproduced live in its entirety in a series of concerts the band held throughout 2010, one of which (in Sheffield) was filmed and shown on BBC Two on 16 May 2010. The following night a documentary about the making of the album was screened; this was later included on a new three-disc special edition of the album released in November 2010.Heaven 17
Glenn Gregory – lead and background vocals
Martyn Ware – synthesisers; Linn LM-1; piano; percussion; backing vocals
Ian Craig Marsh – synthesizers; saxophone; percussion
Malcolm Veale – synthesisers; saxophone
Josie James – backing vocals on "Penthouse and Pavement"
Steve Travell – piano on "Soul Warfare"
The Boys of Buddha – synthetic horns
John Wilson – bass guitar; guitar; guitar synthesizers on "Pavement" side
British Electric Foundation – producers
Peter Walsh – engineer; assistant producer
Steve Rance – engineer
Ray Smith – cover painting
† Released as a 12" single only.
1(We Don’t Need This) Fascist Groove Thang4:16Penthouse and Pavement Wikipedia
2Penthouse and Pavement6:20
3Play To Win3:33