Camouflage Band


Camouflage is a German new wave trio consisting of lead singer Marcus Meyn, Heiko Maile and Oliver Kreyssig. Their only Billboard Hot 100 hit was “The Great Commandment” which climbed to No. 59 in 1988, though it did spend three weeks at No. 1 on the US dance chart. They also had two additional minor dance hits in 1989.



In 1983, Heiko Maile, Marcus Meyn, Oliver Kreyssig, and Martin Kähling, four friends from Bietigheim-Bissingen, Germany, formed the band Licenced Technology. Soon after Martin Kähling left the remaining three members renamed themselves “Camouflage”, inspired by a Yellow Magic Orchestra song. The three musicians set up their first studio in the basement of Heiko’s parents’ house, calling it “Boy’s Factory”. Their first live gigs at local music clubs soon followed. In 1985, Camouflage recorded two demo tapes at their studio, and in 1986, the group won a local radio music contest. A small Frankfurt music label, “Westside”, showed interest in taking Camouflage on. There, the song “The Great Commandment” was recorded to be presented to bigger music companies. Camouflage decided to sign a contract with Metronome.



Working with Axel Henninger, Camouflage re-recorded “The Great Commandment” in Axel’s studio in 1987. The single was released in September of that year and rose to number 14 in the German charts. Their follow-up single “Strangers’ Thoughts” was released in February 1988, rising to number 20. In March, Voices & Images, Camouflage’s debut album, was released.

The album topped the US Billboard Dance Charts twice having been played often by small independent radio stations. In New York, Heiko, Oli and Marcus signed a contract with the US label Atlantic that same year, releasing “Voices & Images” and the single “That Smiling Face” for the US market in the fall of 1988. In an old factory loft near their hometown, Heiko, Oli and Marcus set up “Boy’s Factory 2”, their new studio. With producer Dan Lacksman of Telex, the band recorded a new album Methods of Silence at Synsound Studio in Brussels in 1989. Now left to experiment more freely after the commercial success of their first album, Dan’s recording work revealed an interesting mix of digital high-tech and out-dated studio equipment. Single “Love is a Shield” (position 9 in German charts) stayed in the charts for over six months, and the album reached 13. After follow-up single “One Fine Day”, the band embarked on their first live concert tour to great financial success.At the beginning of 1990, Oliver Kreyssig left the band for personal reasons.

Heiko and Marcus began work on the third album Meanwhile at the Black Barn Studio in England with producer Colin Thursten (who worked with David Bowie, Talk Talk and Duran Duran). Taking a different path, this album included real drums and conventional musical instruments played by guest musicians. The first single “Heaven (I Want You)” was released in Germany and USA, reaching 57 in their home country. Three months after their second German tour commenced, they released the album’s second single, the double-A sided “This Day/Handsome.”



After relocating to Hamburg in 1992, the duo founded their own music publishing company and studio, which saw the release of side project Areu Areu. During this time, they also began recording work for their fourth album. Their 1993 lead single “Suspicious Love” received radio air time and got rotation play on MTV, although proving to be only a minor chart placement. For this, the band faulted its record company Metronome for eschewing the band over other clients such as Ace of Base. As a result, “Bodega Bohemia” and the follow-on singles “Close (We Stroke the Flames)” and “Jealousy” were only released in Germany… Source:


Camouflage Discography

Voices & Images (1988)
Methods of Silence (1989)
Meanwhile (1991)
Bodega Bohemia (1993)
Spice Crackers (1995)
Sensor (2003)
Relocated (2006)
Greyscale (2014)