Formed in 1985, Irish band A House and after minor success in their home country with the singles “Call Me Blue”, “I’ll Always be Grateful” (1988) and “I Think I am Going Mad” (1990).
When A House released their third album, I Am the Greatest, in 1991, the Dave Couse led band scored the first of only two UK top 50’s with the classic single “Endless Art”.
Produced by Edwyn Collins, “Endless Art” featured something of an odd structure – opening with a quote from Oscar Wilde (“All art is quite useless, according to Oscar Wilde”), the rest of the song runs through a list of dead and much celebrated artists, occasionally telling of their ages.
Most notable about the song is its fabulous video – utilising stop-motion techniques, the video showed the trio standing still amongst ever changing props.
Controversy surrounded the single upon its release – as Couse ran through a long list of the dead, it’s quite apparent that no women are present, something that was picked up upon on its original release.
Following much criticism, the band re-recorded the song listing purely female artists – renamed “More Endless Art”, the new version found its way as a B-side at a later time.
There were other problems for the release – despite constant television and radio play, “Endless Art” could not be found anywhere. Poor distribution meant the single was generally unavailable when at the height of its popularity – as a result, A House were never able to build on its success.