A look into the history of Information Society is a peek at the evolution of electronic music. From their first self-released album in 1983 to their 2014 album _hello world, InSoc (as they’re affectionately known), have grown from a young electronic band, mutating the sum total of their influences, to a veteran collective influencing a new generation of electronic musicians. One important thing remains constant: The music is distinctly Information Society, monster electro bass and beats topped with lush, poppy vocal hooks.
Founded by producer/songwriter Paul Robb and vocalist/songwriter Kurt Larson, the group quickly drafted bassist James Cassidy and went on to storm the club charts in the mid ’80s with their Freestyle classic “Running”. Inspired by the worldwide response to the single, the group moved to New York to record their major label debut, Information Society, for Tommy Boy/Reprise. Initial buzz was intense, and proved to be accurate; by the time the group got to its first in-store appearance, two days after the record’s release, the album was sold out.
After a whirlwind series of live dates, the group went on to release the albums Hack and Peace And Love, Inc. and numerous hits, notably the #1 smash “What’s on Your Mind (Pure Energy),” as well as “Walking Away,” “Think,” “Repetition,” and “Peace and Love, Inc.” National and international tours followed; outside the United States the group is particularly popular in South America, Spain, and Japan.
“Pure Energy” and Star Trek
The “pure energy” vocal in "What’s on Your Mind (Pure Energy)" comes from Leonard Nimoy’s character Spock on the TV series Star Trek. In the 1967 Season 1 episode “Errand of Mercy,” Spock and Captain Kirk visit the planet Organia, where their citizens have advanced beyond the need for physical bodies. When two of them vanish in front of them, Spock says, “Fascinating. Pure energy. Pure thought. Totally incorporeal. Not life as we know it at all.”
At the beginning of the song, There’s another sample from the series: DeForest Kelley’s character Dr. McCoy saying, “It’s worked so far, but we’re not out yet.” Two other songs on the Information Society album also use Star Trek samples: “Over the Sea” and “Walking Away.” A problem arose when Paramount did not respond to requests to authorize the use of the Star Trek clips, and the album was held up from release. The band reached out to Adam Nimoy, Leonard’s son, and asked for help. Adam brought the issue to his father’s attention, and the samples cleared. The album was released in 1988 after a six-month delay.
This was Leonard Nimoy’s only appearance on a hit song, although the actor did release two spoken-word albums that made the billboard charts.
In the early 2000s, re-releases of both “Running” and “What’s on Your Mind” reached #1 on the Billboard Dance/Club chart, and the band has enjoyed something of a renaissance ever since, touring the world and recording frequently, including the albums _hello world in 2014 and Orders of Magnitude in 2016.
The group is excited to be performing on Star Trek: The Cruise II and promises to deliver “Pure Energy”!
"For me, Star Trek has always represented a vision of the future of mankind, one to which we can all aspire. Recently, I have begun to see it as an aspirational vision for one’s life; a system of being which tries to create an ever-expanding sphere of experience, exchange, and understanding. I am excited to perform on The Star Trek Cruise and be in the company of others who feel the same."- Kurt Larson/Information Society. April 2017
"We have been fans of Star Trek since TOS was originally aired. We’ve shamelessly incorporated Star Trek samples and visuals into our recordings and our live shows since the day we started. We were honored to perform on ECP’s 2017 80s Cruise but it was no secret our TRUE dream was to perform on the Star Trek cruise. We can’t wait to see everyone on the ship, Rock Out With Your Spock Out!"- Paul Robb/Information Society. April 2017
"I clearly remember watching TOS with my dad when the episodes were premiered. Now I show those same episodes to my son. Between those two experiences lie decades of watching an entire galaxy slowly unfold across five separate lines of stories. It is sometimes difficult (and unpleasant) to remember that that timeline is not actually the one in which I live... (Especially since I live only two miles from Star Fleet Academy! . . . I mean... where it “will” be. I mean... where it “would” be... if, you know.)"- Kurt Larson/Information Society. April 2017