Rad Flag History (alternative)
by on 15 сентября, 2016 in Articles and Interviews

Red Flag (band)

Red Flag is a synthpop band founded in 1984 in San Diego by brothers Chris Reynolds and Mark Reynolds (vocals).Considered to be one of the most successful and widely known synthpop bands hailing from the United States,  Red Flag has proven to be one the most enduring, most prolific, stylistically varied and most influential electronic bands from America.


After growing up in Liverpool, the brothers, following their fathers itinerant job, moved to locations such as Montrealand Seattle; in 1979 the family settled in California,arriving first in Los Angeles, then San DiegoThe brothers first started playing electronic music in 1982, when Mark Reynolds bought a Roland Juno60 synthesizer over a guitar on a trip to a music store.The first song they recorded, «Distant Memories«, under the name «Shades of May«, wasselected for a compilation album, «Local Heroes«, by San Diego radio station 91X in 1984. Shades of Maysubsequently received offers to play live, and the brothers began to study music and computer technology seriouslyin turn. In this interim, the band also changed its name to«Red Flag«; later, the name would frequently be associated with the red flag iconography of the Soviet Union,though the band insisted that it was taken from a warning signal used in surfing.

Later, in March 1988, they performed at a party for Resource Record Pool, a record pool based in SouthernCalifornia, at the Mannikin club in Pacific Beach.  There, the band was noticed by Synthicide Records (a subsidiary of Enigma Records) head andproducer Jon St. James; after their demo tapes were reviewed the following day, the band recorded their firstsingle, «Broken Heart» (as well as its Bside, «Control«) at St. Jamess recording studio, Formula One, a week later.St. James, best known for his work with singer Stacey Q, coproduced the record with her; she also providedbacking vocals and coached Mark on his singing.

«Broken Heart» was released in July 1988; the single was printed on 12» clear red vinyl, and received airplay onboth 91X and the influential KROQFM. That month also saw the band play at larger venues, such as Videopolis atDisneyland. Their first album, «Naïve Art«, was released in 1989 under label Enigma. Released at the time ofseminal synth pop group Depeche Modes greatest success, it drew comparisons as being stylistically similar to thatgroups recordings,  featuring extensive use of synthesizers and dance beats, and vocals that were generally deep andgloomy in mood. Several singles from the album charted highly on the US «Billboard» Hot Dance Music/Club Playcharts, such as «Russian Radio» (#11) and «If I Ever» (#12). Red Flag went on to appear on «American Bandstand«,and the video for «Russian Radio» was played by MTVs «120 Minutes«. Notable producers who worked on «NaïveArt» include Paul Robb of synthpop band Information Society and Joseph Watt of remix service Razormaid. «NaïveArt» remains the only full album Razormaid ever produced.

Red Flag toured frequently, playing at first as opening act to New Wave and synthpop artists such as Devo,Thomas Dolby, Book of Love and Real Life.

In 1991, Enigma Records closed, and the duo signed on with I.R.S. Records and released «Machines» in 1992before leaving the label in 1993. The brothers then founded an independent record label, Plan B Records, fromwhich they have released all their subsequent recordings. Red Flag tracks have appeared on numerouscompilations, including several put out by Razormaid.

By 2000 and the release of the highly acclaimed dark album, «The Crypt«, the brothers were performing withEuropean electropop and futurepop bands like Dance or Die, Melotron, Mesh, T.O.Y., and De/Vision.

On May 17, 2002, Red Flag performed for an audience of nearly one thousand at a concert at the Museum of theNation in Lima, Peru.

Mark Reynolds committed suicide on April 7 2003.

In 2007, Chris Reynolds relaunched the bands official website, announcing plans to record a new Red Flag albumsolo.  The newly released album, titled «Born Again«, which marks Chris Reynolds debut as vocalist, has captivated fans in the dark industrial and goth genresChris Reynolds also revealed plans for a winter 2007 release Christmasthemed album and possibly a best of album in the coming yearRed Flagscomeback tour will be kicked off by shows in Chicago and will include festival performances at Dark Arts Festival 07and Gothicfest 07 and Gothic Cruise 08.


«Naïve Art«, Red Flags first album, was acclaimed by critics as a mixture of classically oriented melodies, drivingdance beats and, industrial sounding samples and fills. The successful album was even sold asan unreleased Depeche Mode album by european bootleggers.

The 1994 album «The Lighthouse» stood out as being stylistically unlike any of the bands prior or subsequentrecordings, with highly ambient, tranquil melodies.

The 2000 release of the highly acclaimed and dark album, «The Crypt«, marked a new darker and more industrialstyle for Red Flag. Though often compared at the time to some of the music hailing from Europes futurepopmovement, Red Flags music has been characterized by a unique style set apart from any other electronic music;distinguishing Red Flag in terms of melodies, vocals, and an expertly crafted electronic style all their own.

The releases of both «Fear of a Red Planet» and «The Bitter End» were harshly criticized by critics in the synthpopgenre, who were unaccustomed to and unaccepting of Red Flags increasingly dark style, lamenting what theyconsidered the gloomy and dark aspects of these albums compared to Red Flags earlier synthpop works.  Only in later years were these two albums noticed anew in the Goth and Darkwave genres, by bothfans and DJs, where they are enjoying a resurgence of interest and airplay.

«Codebreaker t133» fared no better in 2003, with synthpop adherents than preceding albums.  The uptempo album with all songs set to a beat of 133 per minute was more danceable thansome prior Red Flag works but the album failed to catch on.

Red Flags 2002 remix album, «Who are the Skulls?», featured other synthpop artists such as Information SocietyPaul Robb, Cosmicity, Provision, and Rob Rowe of Cause & Effect. The concept of the album was to organize aproject in answer to the many requests from other remixers to work with the band.

In 2007, Chris Reynolds resumed recording as Red Flag and released the exceptional album Born Again to acclaimamong the gothic community.


* Sep 21, 2008 Gothic CruiseTampa, FL
* Dec 08, 2007 Synthetic Snow Festival VMoscow, Russia w/Clan Of Xymox, Assemblage 23 & Altera Forma
* Oct 12, 2007 Gothicfest
* Oct 13, 2007 Record BarKansas City,
* Jun 22, 2007 Necropolisfest, Tijuana, Mexico
* Jun 09, 2007 [http://www.darkartsfestival.com/2007/2007site/index.html Dark Arts Festival] —Salt Lake City, UT w/MachineGun Symphony
* Jun 08, 2007 Green Dolphin Street ClubChicago, IL
* Jun 07, 2007 Club AnythingMilwaukee, WI
* Jun 30, 2002 Synthpop Goes the WorldToronto, Canada
* May 17, 2002 Lima, Peru
* May 23, 2002 HullyGullyLos Angeles, CA w/Shades of Grey, ROOM 1202, Provision,
* May 12, 2002 Club XANTHSan Diego, CA
* Apr 13, 2002 CanesSan Diego, CA w/Daniel Ash
* Mar 16, 2002 (DADA X) Mexico City
* Mar 15, 2002 Synth Organization ClubGuadalajara Mexico : w/SevenoSeven 707, Nexus8
* Dec 29, 2001 TroubadourLos Angeles w/ Room 1202
* Dec 07, 2001 AREA 51, El Paso TX
* Nov 17, 2001 Double Door, Chicago, Illinois
* Nov 06, 2001 CASBAH, San Diego CA w/ ElectroCrypt, Creepy Creeps & Cattle Decapitation
* Oct 26, 2001 Club USUALSan Jose, CA
* Oct 07, 2001 The Church/Lizard LoungeDallas, TX
* Oct 05, 2001 CardisHouston, TX
* Oct 04, 2001 Underworld NightclubHouston, TX w/Provision
* Oct 04, 2001 NumbersHouston, TX
* Sep 03, 2000 PlayroomHollywood, CA
* Nov 17, 2000 Coyote WellsEl Centro, CA w/Anything Box
* Sep 22, 2001 Chasers NightclubScottsdale, AZ
* Jun 22, 2001 The CatwalkSeattle WA
* Jun 23, 2001 The New Paris TheatrePortland OR
* Apr 27, 2001 Markthalle TheatreHamburg, GERMANY w/ De/Vision, S.P.O.C.K , Toy
* Mar 25, 2001 The WarehouseCincinnati, OH
* Mar 24, 2001 BATCAVENew York, NY w/MESH
* Mar 23, 2001 ChasersChicago IL w/FAITH ASSEMBLY
* Mar 22, 2001 The DrinkChicago IL w/MESH, FAITH ASSEMBLY
* Mar 03, 2001 DADA XMexico City, MEXICO
* Feb 18, 2001 The Rage NightclubSacramento, CA
* Feb 16, 2001 DreamStreet TheatreSan Diego, CA w/Fallen 019, Call Me Alice, 1volatile1
* Jan 15, 2000 AREA 51Salt Lake City, UT
* Dec 18, 2000 Dreamstreet TheatreSan Diego CA w/Voz Frontera, Fallen 019, Call Me Alice
* Nov 17, 2000 Blanc Image Coyote WellsEl Centro CA
* Sep 03, 2000 PlayRoomHollywood CA
* Aug 12, 2000 TIVOLI FestivalHelsingborg, SWEDEN w/Dance or Die, S.P.O.C.K., Melotron
* Aug 24, 1995 The EdgePalo Alto, CA
* Mar 1995 Sacramento,
* Mar 03, 1995 Synthpopaluza 2, Dallas, TX
* Aug 25, 1995 San Francisco,
* Nov 18, 1995 Provo, Utah,
* May 02, 1989 KatzHuntsville, TX
* Feb 10, 1989 NumbersHouston

Dates unknown:
* LimeLight Theatre New York NY
* Roseland BallroomNew York, NY w/ Thomas Dolby
* RITZ TheatreNew York NY w/ DEVO
* Wiltern TheatreHollywood CA w/Thomas Dolby
* PaladiumTijuana Mexico
* Galveston Galveston TX w/Book of Love
* Lizard Lounge Dallas TX
* SOMA San Diego CA
* The Spirit Club San Diego CA
* Club I.D. San Diego CA
* BULK San Diego CA
* Manikkin Club San Diego CA

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