Revisiting Bill Nelson’s 1980 single ‘Do You Dream In Colour?’
Bill Nelson had made some vaguely engaging music in the mid-seventies in his guise as leading light of Be Bop Deluxe, but punk arrived and consigned his brand of angular, guitar-driven pop-rock to the bin marked ‘nothing to see here’.
When—indeed if—it was announced that a comeback single was imminent in July 1980, interest can only have been minimal. Nobody could have expected this. ‘Do You Dream In Colour’ is a vision of experimental techno music, a template of a future not defined by six strings, a…well, I don’t really know what the hell it is, other than it sounds fresh and vibrant thirty five years later.
Not only that but Nelson—clearly buoyed with creativity—gave an unsuspecting public the double whammy with the accompanying video, a piece of dark and rather unsettling surrealism reminiscent of early Luis Bunuel.
Pretentious? Probably, but much more fun than you might think.