Living on the Ceiling
|"Living on the Ceiling"|
|Single by Blancmange|
|from the album Happy Families|
"I Would" (12" only)
|Blancmange singles chronology|
"Living on the Ceiling" is a song by British synthpop band Blancmange. It was released as the band's third single in 1982, taken from their debut album Happy Families. It became the band's first (and biggest) UK Top 40 hit, peaking at no. 7 on the UK Singles Chart and being certified Silver by the BPI for sales in excess of 200,000 copies. The single also reached no. 5 on the Australian Singles Chart.
Blancmange performed the song on Top of the Pops, but for broadcast on the show as well as on BBC Radio, the track was edited to replace the lyric "Up the bloody tree" with "Up the cuckoo tree". However in a subsequent episode of Top of the Pops where the song was used as the 'play-out track' without the band in the studio, the original "bloody" lyric was left in and was clearly audible.
Reporting a 2011 interview with Neil Arthur, Sarah Nixey suggested that ".. it was the Indian influences of Pandit Dinesh on tablas and Deepak Khazauchi on sitar who had both given "Living On The Ceiling" its alluring flavour" describing the single as "Middle Eastern tinged". Of the album from which it was drawn Nixey wrote: "Fusing the rhythmic dash of Talking Heads with the intensity of Joy Division plus the melodic framework of OMD and Yazoo on top, Arthur and Luscombe won critical admiration and respectable sales for their debut."
The promotional video, made to accompany the song, was set in Cairo.
In popular culture
- During the 1980s and until the late 1990s, the main theme of "Living on the Ceiling" was used as the opening theme for the Arabic news program on Israel's Channel One television.
- In 1999 "Living on the Ceiling" was sampled by the German techno group Scooter on their song "Kashmir", from the album Back to the Heavyweight Jam.
- In the videogame Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories, "Living on the Ceiling" was used in the Flash FM radio station.
- In 2008 "Living on the Ceiling" was used in British and Australian television commercials for Berocca vitamin tablets.
- The song's "I'm up the bloody tree" line and singer's Lancashire accent were comically lampooned in a 2011 episode of Limmy's Show.
|Australia (Kent Music Report)||5|
|New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)||41|
|South Africa (Springbok Radio)||3|
|UK Singles (Official Charts Company)||7|
|US Billboard Hot Dance Club Play||52|
- Second Helpings (1990)
- Heaven Knows (1992)
- Best of Blancmange (1996)
- The Platinum Collection (2006)
- The Very Best of Blancmange (2012)
- Matheson, Whitney (24 April 2014). "My favorite '80s New Wave song is ...". USA Today. Retrieved 11 July 2014.
- Mason, Stewart. "Living on the Ceiling – Song Review". AllMusic. All Media Network. Retrieved 22 June 2013.
- "Archive Chart: 1982-11-27" UK Singles Chart. Retrieved 25 July 2013.
- "Certified Awards". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved 11 October 2013.
- "Billboard Hits Of The World". Billboard. 95 (13): 59. 26 March 1983. ISSN 0006-2510.
- Nixey, Sarah. "BLANCMANGE Blanc Burn : An Interview with Neil Arthur". Electricity-club.co.uk. Retrieved 19 February 2015.
- "Scooter's Kashmir sample of Blancmange's Living on the Ceiling". WhoSampled. Retrieved 22 July 2013.
- "The Irish Charts – Search Results – Living on the Ceiling". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved 31 May 2013.
- "Charts.org.nz – Blancmange – Living On The Ceiling". Top 40 Singles. Retrieved 22 July 2013.
- "South African Rock Lists Website SA Charts 1969 – 1989 Acts (B)". Rock.co.za. Retrieved 31 May 2013.
- "Happy Families – Awards". AllMusic. All Media Network. Retrieved 31 May 2013.