Martha and the Muffins formed in 1977 as part of Toronto’s early punk / new wave / art pop scene. The song ‘Echo Beach’ from their 1980 album “Metro Music” became an international hit - ‘an infectious new wave pop hit’ (audiofilereview.com). Their 1981 album “This Is The Ice Age” (1981) was the first album that Daniel Lanois (U2, Bob Dylan, Peter Gabriel) was involved with as a producer. He also produced “Danseparc” (1983) and “Mystery Walk” (1984). His sister, Jocelyne, was a band member for a period.
In a reflective piece, BBC wrote that the band “spun dispassionate, witty tales of boredom, longing and paranoia in a manner not dissimilar to that of Talking Heads. However, they had a pure pop sensibility that put them in a slightly different bracket from the hordes of art school rockers doing the rounds at the time, coupled with an unwillingness to let themselves be taken too seriously”.
Founding members Martha Johnson (vocals, keyboards) and Mark Gane (guitar, vocals) selected rare singles, B-sides and unreleased tracks spanning their 35 years of recording for the 2021 release “Marthology: In and Outtakes”. They recently recorded a version of English Beat’s ’Save It For Later’ for Popguru Sound & Vision’s “Coverama” compilation.