The Associates (or simply Associates) were a Scottish post-punk and pop band, formed in Dundee in 1979 by lead vocalist Billy Mackenzie and guitarist Alan Rankine. The band released an unauthorized cover version of David Bowie's "Boys Keep Swinging" as their debut single in 1979, which landed them a recording contract with Fiction Records. They followed with their debut studio album The Affectionate Punch in 1980 and the compilation album Fourth Drawer Down in 1981, both to critical praise.
They achieved commercial success in 1982 with the UK Top 10 studio album Sulk and UK Top 20 singles "Party Fears Two" and "Club Country", during which time they were associated with the New Pop movement. Rankine left the group that year, leaving MacKenzie to record under the Associates name until 1990. They briefly reunited in 1993. MacKenzie's suicide in 1997 was the band's end; Rankine died twenty-six years later in 2023.
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