1977 – 1979 (2 years)
London, England, United Kingdom
- Gary Numan (1977 – 1979)
- Jess Lidyard (1977 – 1979)
- Paul Gardiner (1977 – 1979)
Tubeway Army's main claim to fame is that Gary Webb (aka Gary Numan) first came to the public's attention here. The band was formed in London, UK in 1977 by Gary Numan and the late Paul Gardiner. What started as a British punk band would evolve into something quite different. During the recording of their self-titled first album ("Tubeway Army") in 1978, Numan came across a Minimoog synthesizer accidentally left in the studio which would end up being used in several of the album's songs. The change in sound served well for the band as their first album would go on to sell out its small initial pressing despite not charting.
The release of their second album "Replicas" in 1979 finally gave Numan the success he had been trying to achieve from the start with the single "Are Friends Electric?", the song topping the British charts for four weeks. The band's cold electronic take on minimalistic pop took a little while to catch on with the music audience at large, but proved to be of lasting influence. Combining the artistic and poetic tendencies of David Bowie (especially the Berlin years) with sequenced synthesizers along the lines of Kraftwerk presaged the whole genre of techno-pop in the 1980s.
In late 1979, after the success of "Replicas", Numan dropped Tubeway Army and went on to record as a solo artist.
It's also worthy of note that during 1979, while his band "Ultravox" were on hiatus, Billy Currie collaborated with Gary on material for both "Replicas" and Gary's first solo album "The Pleasure Principle".
The official website can be found here: www.garynuman.co.uk
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