http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/madness_7.jpg
-->''Hey you! Don't watch that, watch this! This is the heavy heavy monster sound, the nuttiest sound around! So if you've come in off the street, and you're beginning to feel the heat, well listen, buster, you'd better start to move your feet, to the rockingest, rocksteady beat of Madness!\\
[[PunctuatedForEmphasis ONE! STEP! BEYOND!]]''

A British band which originated as the North London Invaders in 1976, Madness started off as one of the premier bands of the 2 Tone ska revival and eventually became one of the most successful pop groups in the 1980s, spending 214 weeks in the singles charts. The group has been active for much of the past thirty years. The best known line-up consists of Graham [=McPherson=], aka Suggs (vocals), Mike Barson (keyboards), Chris Foreman (guitar), Lee Thompson (saxophones), Daniel Woodgate (drums), Mark Bedford (bass) and Carl Smyth (vocals, trumpet and acoustic guitar).

Noted for their energetic and 'wacky' style of playing and performing (especially in their earlier music videos), which earned them the moniker of 'The Nutty Boys'. Their music mainly consists of ska and reggae mixed with [[Music/TheBeatles Beatlesesque]], [[TheKinks Kinksy]] pop. Their lyrics often featured humorous observations on growing up in London in a style influenced by IanDury. In 2009 they released the critically acclaimed album ''The Liberty of Norton Folgate'', their first new material in ten years which incorporates all of their main influences into something Suggs describes as 'progressive pop'.

Discography:
* ''One Step Beyond...''
* ''Absolutely''
* ''7''
* ''The Rise and Fall''
** ''Madness'', a compilation album released in the United States instead of ''The Rise and Fall''.
* ''Keep Moving''
* ''Mad Not Mad''
* ''Wonderful''
* ''The Dangermen Sessions, Vol. 1''
* ''The Liberty of Norton Folgate''
* ''Oui Oui Si Si Ja Ja Da Da''

Also of mention is ''The Madness'', a spin-off of the group which only featured Suggs, Smyth, Foreman and Thompson. They were active between 1988 and 1989, after the original line-up broke up (the group as a whole reformed in 1992), and released a self-titled album.

Some of their better known songs include:
* "[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xwbHLlwyQzc One Step Beyond]]"
* "[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xghaOXnnBHo Baggy Trousers]]"
* "[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=puYt7B-tKQ8 It Must Be Love]]"
* "[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KwIe_sjKeAY Our House]]"

!!Tropes
* AlbumIntroTrack: ''The Dangermen Sessions'' has the spoken-word "This Is Where", and ''The Liberty of Norton Folgate'' has the short instrumental "Overture".
* AllDrummersAreAnimals: Averted. Woody is notorious for ''falling asleep'' when not otherwise required.
** Sloths are animals too, right?
* TheBandMinusTheFace: Although he was never the "face" as such, many people felt the group wasn't the same without Mike Barson.
* BlatantBurglar: The video for "Shut Up". And the song, for that matter, which is written from the point of view of a pair of Blatant Burglars.
-->''I'm as honest as the day is long,\\
The longer the daylight, the less I do wrong.''
* CanonDiscontinuity: Their 2007 non-album single "Sorry", whose title pretty much reflects the band's attitude to it.
* CareerResurrection: Twice. First in the early nineties when they got back together to perform the first Madstock concert, had a number one greatest hits album and re-charted several of their older songs. Second was in 2009 when they released ''The Liberty Of Norton Folgate'', which demonstrated that they were still a creative force and not just another oldies act.
* CoolShades: Usually worn by Suggs, Smash and Barson, but the others will have them out from time to time.
* ConceptAlbum: ''The Liberty of Norton Folgate'' consists of songs about London (although Suggs points out that this is what a lot of their songs were about in the introduction to the album).
** ''The Rise and Fall'' was intended to feature songs about different aspects of the various band members childhoods. It didn't quite work out and only about three or four songs really fit the concept.
* CoverAlbum: ''The Dangermen Sessions, Volume One.''
* CoverVersion: As well as the aforementioned ''Dangermen Sessions'', they've done quite a few covers of older ska songs, but noticably fewer than a lot of their 2 Tone contemporaries.
* CreatorCameo: In the video for their cover version of 'It Must Be Love'; the song's writer, Labi Siffre, makes a brief appearance as a violinist.
* CreatorBacklash: Most notably the 1986 album ''Mad Not Mad'', which was made after Mike Barson left the group. Suggs famously described this one as "a polished turd".
* EverythingIsAnInstrument: "Driving In My Car". All sorts of rhythmic shenanigans with car parts.
* FakeBand: For their covers album, ''The Dangermen Sessions, Vol. 1'', they created a fictional backstory for a reggae band called the Dangermen and performed old Blue Beat songs (and some of Madness' more overtly ska-influenced numbers) under the name. The "members" were Robert "the Poet" Chaos (Suggs), Jimmy Ooh (Smash), Professor Psykoticus (Mike Barson), Lester Burnham (Bedders), Daniel Descartes (Woody), Christofos Formantos (Chris Foreman) and "Unnamed" (Lee Thompson).
* FiveFingerDiscount: "Deceives The Eye"
* FollowTheBouncingBall: The video for "Night Boat To Cairo".
* TheGoodOldBritishComp: Subject of "Baggy Trousers", and the song is often used as a stock piece to indicate 'nostalgia for schooldays' in British media.
* GreatestHitsAlbum: They have four main ones: ''Complete Madness'', ''Utter Madness'', ''Divine Madness'' and ''Total Madness''. Being primarily known as a singles band, ''Complete'' and ''Divine'' are their only number one albums so far. The most recent notably excludes the less well-known singles the band recorded after leaving Stiff Records.
** There are several further compilations, and it's a testament to the strength of their songs that an album sold exclusively in Tesco supermarkets in the same year as ''Total Madness'' can sell well enough to reach the lower end of the top 40.
** Their American debut, ''Madness'', is basically a makeshift greatest hits album that was sold as a studio album there. It was released just as "Our House" was becoming a hit, but for some odd reason their American label declined to release ''The Rise and Fall''.
* InfantImmortality: "Time For Tea" is an inversion (or strictly speaking, a potential inversion as the death is only implied).
* {{Japandering}}: The band appeared in a Japanese commercial for the Honda City minicar, and wrote and recorded a song specifically for it. The song, "In The City", was released in the UK as the B-side to "Cardiac Arrest" and then on the "Complete Madness" hits album. [[TropesAreNotBad It's actually pretty good.]]
* JukeboxMusical: ''Our House''.
* LighterAndSofter: Compared to most of what {{Music/The Specials}} did.
* LockedInAFreezer: Happens to Willie during an innocent game of Hide-and-Seek in "Time For Tea". [[LeftHanging It is not revealed whether]] he is discovered in time.
* LondonGangster: In "Drip Fed Fred" features guest vocalist IanDury playing one of these characters as he greets the "gentlemen and assassins, and ladies of the night" and boasts of his assassination of the eponymous Drip Fed Fred.
* LongRunnerLineUp
* LyricalDissonance: "Cardiac Arrest", "Johnny the Horse", "Idiot Child", "House of Fun" and a few others.
* TheManBehindTheMan: Pianist Mike Barson was musical director in all but name from the group's early days. He and Lee Thompson also wrote most of the songs before the rest of the group started to become more involved in the songwriting process.
** Carl Smyth is generally considered to have taken Barson's place as "leader". Like Barson, he's not exactly invisible, but his importance within the set-up is probably even less obvious to the general public than Barson's was.
* MindScrew: The music video for "(Waiting for the) Ghost Train", the band's last single before they split which is also about apartheid in South Africa, took the nuttiness UpToEleven.
* TheMovie: At the height of their fame in 1982, the group financed ''Take It Or Leave It'', which described their beginnings as a band. Most chose to Leave It, and those who decided to Take It did so because it was SoBadItsGood (among other things, Suggs kept looking directly at the camera when singing, having become used to doing that in music videos).
* NeoclassicalPunkZydecoRockabilly: Suggs describes the ten minute long title track of ''The Liberty of Norton Folgate'' as 'progressive pop'.
* NoExportForYou: "Driving In My Car" remained unreleased in the USA for many years, probably because of all the British geographical references.
* TheNotRemix: The UK and US mixes of "It Must Be Love" aren't hugely different, but they're different ''enough'' that if you're familiar with one, hearing the other will come as a bit of a shock.
* OneHitWonder: In the United States, their only big hit was "Our House" and its the song that they are most remember for there, despite having one other Top 40 single ("It Must Be Love"). In the United Kingdom, they were one of the most successful artists of the whole 1980's.
* OutOfCharacterMoment: The (usually) perpetually unsmiling Terry Hall is actually seen ''doubled over laughing'' during the Fun Boy Three's cameo in the "Driving In My Car" video.
* PantyThief: The subject of "In the Middle of the Night".
* PerformanceVideo: Many of their videos involved performances as a part of the action, but the video for "One Step Beyond" (the first they made) was just a straight performance and nothing else. The cheap'n'cheerful vid for "Night Boat to Cairo" is another prime example.
* PunctuatedForEmphasis: "ONE! STEP! BEYOND!"
* RecordProducer: the prolific production duo of Clive Langer and Alan Winstanley originally came together to work on ''One Step Beyond''. They also produced all of Madness' subsequent albums apart from ''The Dangermen Sessions''.
** Graham "Suggs" [=McPherson=] produced The Farm's hits "Groovy Train" and "All Together Now".
* RockOpera: "The Liberty of Norton Folgate" (both the album itself and the title track).
* RockstarSong: "Rockin' in A-flat" from the first album is about a would-be rock 'n' roller getting a band together and "making all the geezers in the flats complain."
* SarcasticTitle: "Land Of Hope And Glory" is a cynical song about a young man imprisoned in a Borstal institution.
* SequelSong: "Close Escape" is a sequel to "In The Middle Of The Night" in which the PantyThief protagnist becomes an [[HarassingPhoneCall obscene phone caller]] instead. Even though the two songs are the work of different writing teams.
* SpecialGuest: IanDury performed lead vocals on "Drip Fed Fred". Before that, they also recorded an alternative version of "Tomorrow's Just Another Day" (one of their own songs) with ElvisCostello, who was signed to the same label at the time. MichaelCaine also provided voice clips for the song "Michael Caine".
* StageNames: Suggs ([=McPherson=]), Smash (Smyth), Monsieur Barso (Barson), El Thommo (Thompson), Chrissy Boy (Foreman), Bedders (Bedford) and Woody (Woodgate).
* StealingFromTheTill: "Calling Cards" is about a gang of criminals who take jobs with the Post Office precisely for this, uh, "perk".
* TakeThat: Against the press who had painted them as supporting racism (due to poor research) in "Don't Quote Me On That".
** "Embarrassment" is a TakeThat against Lee Thompson's ''own family'' for [[http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/magazine/4465666.stm rejecting his sister when she got pregnant by a black man]].
* TheCoverChangesTheGender: Sung from a female perspective, the Tracy Ullman cover of "My Girl" changes the title and lyric to "My Guy".
* ThreeChordsAndTheTruth: Suggs' introduction of the band at the beginning of the ''Live at Madstock'' DVD includes the line, "Our rhythm guitarist is Chrissy Boy, a man of many words and three chords."
* ThroughTheEyesOfMadness: "Shadow Of Fear" (what appears to be religious paranoia), "Primrose Hill" (probably about severe agoraphobia).
* TitledAfterTheSong: Named for a Music/PrinceBuster song which they covered on their first album.
* TwoTone: They were one of the bands that defined the sound, though they released only one single on the label itself.
* WhatCouldHaveBeen: Ever wonder why Madness was the only band to perform on ''TheYoungOnes'' twice? The band had been offered a deal for their own sitcom, and the BBC was trying to see how well viewers responded to the band. It is unknown if the deal was rescinded or the band declined, because no sitcom came to fruition.
* WordOfGod: "Michael Caine" is supposedly about an IRA informer during UsefulNotes/TheTroubles. Good luck working that out from the lyrics.
* XMeetsY: Characterised disparagingly by ''The Rolling Stone'' as "''TheBluesBrothers with British accents.''" The magazine was generally scathing towards the ska revival.
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