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Archive are a London, England-based musical group, whose music spans electronica, trip hop and progressive rock.
Archive were formed by Darius Keeler and Danny Griffiths in 1994 from the ashes of UK breakbeat act Genaside II. Together with female singer Roya Arab and young rapper Rosko John, the band released their first album "Londinium" on Island Records in 1996, a mix of dark Trip hop (in a similar vein to Massive Attack), electronica and progressive music. The album received moderate critical acclaim, but due to internal dispute the band split up later that year.
However, in 1997 Keeler and Griffiths reformed Archive with another female singer (Suzanne Wooder) and in 1999 released their second album "Take My Head", a mix of pop and symphonic trip-hop far more melodic than its predecessor. The band have described this album as their least favourite of their albums.
Between 2002 and 2005 the band released three albums with Craig Walker, formerly of Power of Dreams, as singer, to growing popularity and critical acclaim, including a large following in France and Poland. These albums have seen Archive gradually turn away from their roots in Electronica and Trip hop and towards more psychedelic and progressive style of bands such as Pink Floyd, Mogwai, and The Secret Machines. The band also composed the soundtrack to the French film Michel Vaillant, released in November 2003.
Archive announced at short notice that Walker would not be joining the band's tour in November 2004 "due to unforeseen circumstances". Another statement from Darius Keeler hinted at personal problems keeping Walker from touring . In an interview with TV station arte in late 2005 , Keeler and Griffiths stated that Walker is in fact no longer with Archive and is working on a solo album, whereas Walker has stated that he left Archive due to personal differences with management and other band members.
In autumn of 2004, Archive announced that Dave Pen (Birdpen) would be replacing Walker on the Noise tour - due to the continuing personal problems between Walker and the rest of the band. During this same tour, Keeler and Griffiths met the singer Pollard Berrier at one of their shows in Vienna, Austria. The three began writing and rehearsing together, and were recording in Southside Studios, London by September 2005.
In May 2006, Archive released "Lights", from which the first single was "System". Dave Pen contributed on three tracks of the album and Maria Q sang on four tracks.
They have been touring in Europe since 2006, with Dave Pen, Pollard Berrier and occasionally Maria Q as singers. As the critical reaction to their "Lights" tour has been excellent, they recorded a live DVD in Paris in January 2007.
Archive released their 6th album "Controlling Crowds" on march 30th 2009. The first single was entitled "Bullets".
As of February 2009, Rosko John is "back in the Archive collective" per the official Archive newsletter.
- Maria Q - vocals
- Pollard Berrier - vocals, guitar
- Dave Penney - guitar, vocals
- Steve Harris - guitar
- Jonathan Noyce - bass
- Lee Pomeroy - bass
- Darius Keeler - synthesizer, piano
- Danny Griffiths - synthesizer, samples
- Smiley - drums
- Rosko John - vocals, MC
- Craig Walker - vocals, guitar
- Roya Arab - vocals
- Londinium (1996)
- Take My Head (1999)
- You All Look the Same to Me (2002)
- Noise (2004)
- Lights (2006)
- Controlling Crowds (2009)
- Controlling Crowds Part IV (2009)
- With Us Until You're Dead (2012)
- Axiom (2014)
- Again SP (2002)
- Numb SP (2002)
- Live at Paris/France Inter (2002)
- Live at Zenith (2007)
Trip hop, Electronica, Progressive rock, New prog, Britpop