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Steps scored 14 consecutive prime 10 hits between 1998 and 2001

They began off as a novelty act, designed to money in on the 1990s line-dancing craze – however Steps’ reputation has been surprisingly long-lived.

Usually derided as a “discount basement Abba”, they bought greater than 15 million albums earlier than their cut up in 2001.

After reforming in 2012, they’ve lastly made a brand new album – which occurs to incorporate a track by Abba’s Bj√∂rn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson.

Referred to as Story of a Heart, it is a cowl of a track by Andersson’s present band.

Written within the vein of The Winner Takes it All, it is a sometimes Abba-esque ballad a couple of lady whose life is turned the wrong way up when she sees an previous lover’s face in a crowd.

“The track’s acquired a great story,” Steps’ singer Lisa Scott-Lee told Popjustice. “We felt it was a great nod to the place we have been musically as a band, however I associated to the phrases whereas I used to be recording it.”

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The band even taught Prince Charles the dance routine to Tragedy on the Prince’s Belief Live performance in 1999

It is definitely a crafty alternative – acknowledging the band’s debt to Abba, with out desecrating considered one of their classics.

In line with singer Claire Richards, it has even had the seal of approval from Abba themselves.

“Benny actually appreciated our tackle it,” she told The Sun. “He stated it is virtually nearly as good as his model!”

Story of a Coronary heart will function on Tears on the Dancefloor, Steps’ first album of latest songs since Buzz, launched 17 years in the past.

It is going to be preceded by a single, Petrified of the Darkish, which is out this Friday; and the band will embark on a 15-date tour this November.

Scott-Lee stated the world was prepared for an additional dose of Steps’ bright-eyed chart pop.

“What we are able to supply is escapism and a little bit of positivity in folks’s lives,” she stated. “Everybody’s coping with numerous various things however music’s common, and it takes you to a different place and time, and this album – I really feel – is the place Steps ought to be 20 years on.”

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The band had been recognized for his or her sunny manner and easily-replicable dance routines

  • The band had been fashioned in 1997, after an advert appeared in The Stage saying open auditions for a five-piece line-dancing pop group.
  • The profitable candidates had been Lisa Scott-Lee, Ian “H” Watkins, Derek O’Brien, Maddy Chan, and Mitch Stevens.
  • After the preliminary line-up didn’t gel, additional auditions had been held; with Lisa and H joined by Claire Richards, Faye Tozer and Lee Latchford Evans
  • Their debut single, 5, 6, 7, 8 was a tacky dance observe that capitalised on the line-dancing craze.
  • It didn’t make the highest 10, however hung across the charts for months, ultimately turning into one of many biggest-selling singles of the last decade.

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Static electrical energy will not be your good friend

  • Steps then signed to Jive Data, attracting the eye of pop svengali Pete Waterman, who plotted to make the five-piece “Abba on pace”.
  • Waterman offered their second single – a Bananarama cast-off referred to as Last Thing on My Mind – which went into the UK prime 10.
  • Their third single, One for Sorrow, began a run of 14 consecutive prime 10 hits, together with Stomp and Deeper Shade of Blue.
  • Every of their songs had its personal dance routine, printed on the interior sleeve of the CD single.
  • Tragedy – a canopy of the Bee Gees basic – was their huge cultural second, reaching primary in 1999.

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Getty Photos

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The band’s 30-date reunion tour was an enormous success in 2012

  • H befriended Britney Spears, resulting in Steps supporting the star on her 1999 US tour.
  • An hour earlier than the final date of their Gold tour in 2001, H and Claire handed their bandmates letters saying they had been quitting.
  • H and Claire launched a solo profession, which flopped after one album, and briefly hosted Saturday morning youngsters’ present SM:TV.
  • And that was the tip… till the band had been coaxed collectively for a Sky Dwelling documentary in 2011. “Did you actually hate us?” Faye requested H and Claire.
  • Lisa stated she would “by no means recover from” the way in which the band ended.
  • However she did, and so they toured the following 12 months, promoting out arenas throughout the nation.

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The band even had dolls made of their picture within the 1990s

  • They subsequently launched an album of covers, however took break day to pursue solo initiatives in 2013.
  • H appeared in Joseph and his Wonderful Technicolor Dream Coat whereas Faye starred in a touring manufacturing of Singin’ within the Rain.
  • Behind the scenes, they appointed new managers and commenced work on comeback album Tears on the Dancefloor.

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