Freez have the distinction of being one of the first U.K. artists to form their own label. They were also able to escape the disco backlash of the late ‘70s, updating their club sound to change with people's tastes. Freez was formed in 1978 by vocalist John Rocca, bassist Peter Maas, keyboardist Andy Stennet, and drummer Paul Morgan. In 1980, the band had a minor hit with "Keep in Touch" knocking at the bottom of the U.K. charts. A year later, the group was signed to Beggars Banquet, an unusual move for a company that usually releases dark, post-punk bands. The single "Southern Freeze" was a smash in England. Although the group didn't stray too far from their disco roots, they embraced electro and freestyle, even collaborating with acclaimed New York producer Arthur Baker on their biggest hit, "I.O.U." Freez appeared on the British TV show Top of the Pops in 1983, performing "Pop Goes My Love," another successful record and a cult favorite among ‘80s enthusiasts. In 1986, Rocca and Stennet left Freez but continued recording as Pink Rhythm. Freez proceeded without them on one more LP and then split up. Rocca landed at number one on the U.S. dance charts in 1987 with "I Want to Be Real." Freez Frame! The Best of Freez, a compilation of Freez's most popular tracks, was released in 1993. Rocca recorded an album as MIDI Rain in 1994. ~ Michael Sutton
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