Aural Sculpture was placed at number 14 in the U.K. album charts in November 1984. There were 3 singles released from the Album called "Skin Deep" (Number 15 in the UK singles chart),"No Mercy" (Number 37 in the UK singles chart) & "Let Me Down Easy" (number 48 in the UK singles chart) all were accompanied by 12" single versions. "No Mercy" had a further two format releases in picture disc and EP.
As part of The Stranglers' celebration of their Ruby Anniversary, the definitive collection of the B-side recordings they made whilst signed to Epic is released for the first time, via their own label. Appropriately, as befits a band marking forty years together, Here & There: The Epic B-sides Collection 1983-1991 gathers 40 tracks across 2 CDs and is also released as a 40 track digital package. The Stranglers released no less than 13 singles in the UK during this period, which saw them produce five albums: four studio and one live. The Stranglers signed to Epic Records in 1982 having been with United Artists / Liberty since 1977. The change of label coincided with changes in marketing policy across the UK industry - often dubbed "the Frankie Goes to Hollywood effect". Previously, The Stranglers' had released only one 12" single - an extended version of Bear Cage in 1980 - but from 2nd Epic single, Midnight Summer Dream until 1990, each release had a 12" version which required extra studio or, increasingly, live tracks to "add value" to the package.
To speak about this extensive set of music allegorically, "Space 'n' Bass" is like an aquarium full of beautiful and varied tropical fish, each interesting in it's own way, whether breathtakingly colorful, exotically compelling or curiously fascinating. And by the very nature of the mediums, both the fish in the imaginary aquarium and the music in these CDs achieve relaxing and beautiful movement via endless repetition and effectively enjoyed for limited time periods only. This is not to say that "Space 'n' Bass" is boring; it boasts an impressive array of ambient electronica offering ample doses of acid jazz, jungle, world-beat and beat-box percussive underpinnings, a nice balance of analog, digital and sampled textures, a smattering of other instruments, infectious bass patterns and surprising aural constructions…
The Stranglers formed as the Guildford Stranglers in the southern England village of Chiddingfold (near Guildford) in 1974, plowing a heavily Doors-influenced furrow through the local pub rock scene – such as it was. Of the four founding members, only Hugh Cornwell had any kind of recognizable historical pedigree, having played alongside Richard Thompson in the schoolboy band Emil & the Detectives.