It's unbelievable! British electro-rockers EMF are reuniting to promote their new greatest-hits collection.
The group behind the 1991 No. 1 hit "Unbelievable" will play its first shows in five years June 4 at the Junction in Cambridge, England, and June 5 at the Astoria in London.
A week later, on June 11, EMF will release in the U.K. Epsom Mad Funkers: The Best of EMF, setting straight the debate over the origins of their moniker, which many believed stood for "Ecstasy Motherf*ckers." (They added fuel to the fire when they worked that phrase into a cheer on a B-side, called, appropriately, "EMF.")
The greatest-hits collection also will include two new tracks, "Incredible" and "Let's Go," which the group recorded recently, according to an EMI Records spokesperson in the U.K. The album will be released internationally, including in the U.S., but details are still being worked out.
A bonus disc of remixes, including one by Beastie Boys producers the Dust Brothers, will be included with Epsom Mad Funkers: The Best of EMF, the spokesperson said. EMF are still finalizing the track listings of both albums and taking input from fans on their official Web site.
EMF - vocalist James Atkin, guitarist Ian Dench, bassist Zachary "Zac" Foley, drummer Mark de Cloedt, and keyboardist Derry Brownson - formed in 1989 in Forest of Dean, England.
Within a year, they were on the top of the charts in the U.K. with "Unbelievable," which later hit the States. It's remained a compilation standard, appearing most recently on last year's Coyote Ugly soundtrack.
Along with "Unbelievable," 1991's Schubert Dip, EMF's debut album, included the single "Lies." That year the band also released a video compilation, Smoke the Banger. Stigma and the EP Unexplained followed in 1992. 1995's Cha Cha Cha was never released in the States.
But EMF have kept a steadfast fan base over the years, according to 25-year-old Ohio native Cara DeCarlo, who has maintained their official Web site since 1996.
"After the official demise of EMF in 1996, the band members went off to pursue other things," DeCarlo said. "They all had bands that had moderate success in the U.K. but never stayed together very long. Through all this, the fans kept saying they should just get EMF back together, even for a one-off reunion show. But nobody ever thought it would happen."
DeCarlo, who is flying to England for the shows, said determined EMF fans definitely played a role in prompting the reunion.
"EMF proved that it was OK to mix rock, pop, and dance all together in one nice little package," DeCarlo said of EMF's mark on the music world. "EMF helped bring to the front a genre that was very innovative in the early '90s but was unfortunately quickly washed away by grunge."