British electronic artist Mark Bell has passed away due to complications from surgery. He was a member of the pioneering electronic group, LFO, and went on to collaborate with artists such as Björk and Depeche Mode. His label, Warp Records, announced his death today.
“It’s with great sadness that we announce the untimely passing of Mark Bell of LFO who died last week from complications after an operation. Mark’s family & friends request privacy at this difficult time,” they stated. No other details have been disclosed.
In 1988, Bell founded electronic duo LFO with Gez Varley. LFO soon became one of the leading groups in the rave scene, and the two artists were some of the first to be signed by electronic label Warp Records. Their self-titled track, “LFO” was Warp’s very first Top 20 hit.
When Varley left LFO in 1996, Bell began focusing on production. He produced Björk’s Grammy-nominated 1997 album, Homogenic, and continued to collaborate with her up until his death. Bell was heavily involved in her 1998 tours and her 2007-2008 Volta tour. He also worked on all of Björk’s albums, from Homogenic in 1997 to Biophilia in 2011. Additionally, Bell worked on Deltron 3030’s self-titled album in 2000, and took on the production duties for Depeche Mode’s entire 2001 album, Exciter.
Many artists in the dance music community, such as Django Django, Luke Abbott, and Drums of Death, have reached out via social media to pay tribute to the influential artist. Electronic artist and producer Machinedrum tweeted: “RIP Mark Bell. His work has always been an inspiration, total amazing balance of intensity and lush melodic atmospheres. So tragic :(.” Mark Pritchard, another Warp Records artist, tweeted “Mark Bell – Thanks for all the Bass and wicked music,” and linked to a video of LFO’s “Freeze.” English electronic artist Nathan Fake also shared his condolences on Twitter, writing, “horrified to learn about Mark Bell. one of my musical heroes. devastated. RIP.”
A few hours before Bell’s death was made public by Warp, Björk posted his 1995 remix of her song, “Possibly Maybe,” to all of her social media accounts. Following the official announcement, she shared “Love is the Message” by LFO to around 4 million followers.