Gary Numan’s Machine Music Tour 2012 ~ A Review

My friend and sometimes-guest author Mark Ryan was lucky enough to attend two performances of Gary Numan’s latest Machine Music tour. Mark wanted to share his impressions with other Numanoids via Rave and Roll. I am honored to present his review here. (Photography by Karren Bailey and Vikki Churchill).

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Photo by Karren Bailey

On May 22nd of this year, Gary Numan started another UK Tour. Those fortunate to see him live will never regret it. Those who have not seen him live are missing something special. In this short piece I am going to try and give you a small review of Gary Numan’s Machine Music tour. I saw him in 2 places (Sheffield & Birmingham) and will try to give an unbiased opinion of the live show, along with all of the plusses and minuses.

The Machine Music tour was billed as a singles tour with songs Numan had either never done live, or had only performed onstage once before.

The opening song was Berserker (Berserker, 1984) – I was really looking forward to this having heard it last in 1984. For the 2 shows I attended, the vocals were better if you stood in row 4 or 5; however, the guitar and female vocals were great.

This was followed by Metal (Pleasure Principle, 1979), a brilliant song that’s even better live. This made it seem as though the live show had finally started.

The Fall (Dead Song Rising, 2012) – This is a great song and Gary did the song proud. There are rumours that it’s written for an ex-band member. This was one of the crowd’s favourites with people jumping up and down during the chorus.

Bombers (1978) – This is an old Tubeway Army song that included a video of old airplanes as a backdrop. For this piece, Gary played 2nd guitar and made it seem as though he rejoiced at playing one of his old punk numbers. Also, there was great bass guitar.

Crazier (Hybrid, 2003) – This is one of my favourite Numan songs, and Gary really did the song justice. This song reached the Top 15 in 2003 and the crowd lapped the song up. Gary was truly great on this number.

Photo by Vikki Churchill

Call out the Dogs (The Fury, 1985) – First of all, I have no idea what this song is about, and I have not previously witnessed him sing this live. However, it was brilliant. The drums more or less took over this song especially at the bridge where it seems keyboards/ guitars are fighting for the drums in equal billing. This was the best song/performance so far, in my opinion.

Dominion Day (Sacrifice, 1994) – This was the turnaround song for Gary professionally and once again this was brilliant. I can actually remember hearing this song originally and thinking “wow”. Now, all I can think of is “brilliant”.

This Wreckage (Telekon, 1980) – I was surprised that Gary included this particular song as Telekon had some other awesome songs (Aircrash Bureau). That said, “This Wreckage” came across brilliant live, even the Japanese vocal (which Gary forgot to sing in the 1st part; however, he did seem lost in the moment).

Absolution (Exile, 1997) – This is from my favourite Numan album and written about people’s faith (although it has also been called a love song). This was excellent, although the background video put me off fully enjoying the song.

That’s Too Bad (1977) – This was Numan’s first release. To my knowledge he’s never done this live and it makes you wonder, why not? This was truly amazing with great guitars. I actually remember the words and there people around me who were also familiar with it. If you see any footage of this live, make sure you pay close attention. This was legendary

In a Dark Place (Jagged, 2006) – This was a brilliant song that featured some great keyboards, along with and the keyboard player on backing vocals. This can be included as one of his best songs in the show.

Photo by Vikki Churchill

Down in the Park (Replicas, 1979) – This started of the whole Gary Numan craze for me. Once I heard this back in the day, I was hooked and still am. No matter how many times he performs this, I will never tire of it.

RIP (Pure, 2000) This was a perfect song. The band were on form at this time. Especially when the chorus approaches.

Love Needs No Disguise (1981) This has never EVER been done live by Gary before. So obviously I was looking forward to it, knowing it could possibly be the highlight to the show. Before the song he dedicated it to the Memory of Cedric Sharpley who was Gary’s previous drummer and who passed away 6 weeks ago from a heart attack. He then introduced Rrussell Bell (guitar) & Chris Payne (violin) who were in Gary’s backing band at the start of his career and are still loved by longtime, faithful fans. This seemed almost surreal. It absolutely delivered live as Gary sung it with so emotion. This was indeed the highlight of the show so far.

Warriors (Warriors, 1983) Although I love this song, it did not work for me. Good song and lovely guitar work; however, the original featured some electric slap bass and live it did not work or connect with me.

I Die You Die (1980) This is probably my favourite Numan song. Every time he does this live it makes the hairs stand up on my arms and this was no exception. Gary seemed to really enjoy this.

Photo by Vikki Churchill

We are Glass (1980) This was released as a single and reached the Top 5. However, this song doesn’t sound right live, almost as though there is something missing. It’s almost anticlimactic. This actually left me disappointed.

This was the end of the live set but high chants of NUMANNNNNNNNNN echoed throughout the venue as we waited for an encore……………..and they did not disappoint.

Healing (2007) This is an Ade Fenton Song where Gary sung vocals and it got considerable airplay on some music stations. However, this did not fit in with the rest of the show and I wonder why this was included. There are so many other songs he could have played in this spot.

Cars (Pleasure Principle, 1979) This was the usual Cars performance but I wish he would not do it live. It’s a great song, but when you have heard it for the 100th time (?) live………nothing wrong with the performance, though.

Photo by Karren Bailey

Are Friends Electric (Replicas, 1979) was the final song of the show. This is /was all things great. As a special treat he again invited Rrussell Bell (guitar) & Chris Payne (violin) onto the stage which surprised the audience. This was, without doubt, the highlight of the show. “Are ‘Friends’ Electric” was sung with effort and emotion, along with a backing band that raised their Game. This was a perfect ending to a great night’s entertainment.

Bobbi Style and Access 2 ~ The Story Continues

Last July, I reported on Bobbi Style’s brainchild, the Access 2 Foundation. In a nutshell, Bobbi is breathing life into his dream of providing disabled-accessible music studios to all musicians. Since July’s post, he has been tirelessly rolling forward (literally!), not only gaining financial and physical support, but also opening his first Access 2 studio near his home in Coquitlam, British Columbia, Canada.

Some of the funding is a result of the hard work of musicians that have committed to donating their time and talent to create tracks for sale. Proceeds are then channeled into the Access 2 project. Bobbi, himself a wildly gifted singer/songwriter who started out as a vital part of the 80s goth/new wave scene (and continues to record to this day), has loaned his enormous talent to several tracks that are now available for purchase on iTunes.

Do yourself a huge favor; if you haven’t already done so, check out the whirlwind known as Bobbi Style. Then, do two very positive things with your money: purchase some great music for your library, and help support a worthy project created to ensure that all musicians have the chance to keep our world full of the music we love.

Bobbi Style on iTunes
http://itunes.apple.com/ca/artist/bobbi-style/id332898927

Girl EP
http://itunes.apple.com/ca/album/girl-ep/id491250999

Bobbi Style “Embrace Me” live

“Dead Son Rising” CD by Gary Numan with Ade Fenton ~ A Review

Please do not copy any portion of this article without the express written consent of the original author. Requests for permission may be left in the form of a comment on https://raveandroll.wordpress.com.

“Dead Son Rising” CD by Gary Numan with Ade Fenton – released September 2011

(Photo credits: Ed Fielding Photography http://www.edfielding.co.uk/)

Long awaited, Dead Son Rising is a theme-driven collection of electronica only the way Gary Numan, along with Ade Fenton, can create. Pounding and wistful, demanding and longing, tender and brutal, it is a study in impossible contrasts that work together so seamlessly as to be other-worldly. Words can only inadequately describe the music on this brilliant CD. If you love electronica/dark wave/industrial/goth, this is a must-have addition to your collection.

Resurrection
The swell of the synthesizers backdropped with breathing sounds and static is a perfect indicator of what is to come on this epic CD. Something sinister yet magical is in the air, and we are about to be willingly drawn into its merciless grasp.

Big Noise Transmission
Static noise and a driving rhythm section catapult us into a staccato mind-puzzle fraught with urgent, whispered pleas. Fully Numan-esque and gripping, this industrial anthem is a rock-solid testament to a direction Numan has whole-heartedly embraced over the past sixteen years. He shows us he has this genre fully mastered and ready for our listening pleasure. The abrupt end leaves us aching for more.

Dead Sun Rising
Numan uses his signature vocals against a deeply satisfying electronic backdrop. There is no one on this planet that could pull off an electronic ballad as successfully as Gary Numan. It is the perfect melding of lyrics, vocals, and synthesizers that captures the soul and transports it to another dimension.

When the Sky Bleeds, He Will Come
Numan and company use everything but the kitchen sink to deliver this masterpiece. Left to the devices of mere mortals, this song would result in listening confusion; in Gary and Ade’s more than capable hands, it is an extraordinary testament to pushing music to its limits and successfully achieving perfection.

For the Rest Of My Life
Don’t let the title/lyrics fool you. This is no tender love song. It borders on an obsessiveness that is both scary yet oddly compelling. It is similar to approaching an accident scene on the highway, and not being able to avert your eyes. In fact, it makes the listener want to hit the “replay” button; not only to hear it again, but to validate the message.

Not the Love We Dream Of
The stark piano notes that open this song are gorgeous. Enter Gary Numan’s voice, and what we end up with is a slightly off-kilter and purposeful story woven of disappointment and sadness. Who can’t relate to the melancholic message delivered here? We have all made mistakes that have devastated us. Numan and company put context to those feelings so we can unleash the demons within.

The Fall
Gary advises us how to deal with being shattered, even telling us point blank that the world still goes on even if we cannot. This is a perfect song to play when things are falling apart in our lives, if only for the rhythm, which makes it impossible to sit still long enough to feel sorrow.

We Are the Lost
The powerful and driving drumbeat that opens this track and anchors it throughout is a welcome diversion from the keyboards that usually take the limelight. Coupled with a Middle Eastern flair that Numan has previously and successfully brought into his music, this song resonates down into the listener’s toes. The textures are rich and colorful, like an open market full of hand-woven cloth displays.

For The Rest Of My Life (Reprise)
Like a path winding its way through a dark forest, we are gently guided to a clearing where Gary awaits us to remind us of the lost love he introduced us to earlier in our journey.

Into Battle
This track is a cacophony of sounds that starts out somewhat reminiscent of wind chimes in a stormy summer garden. But don’t be lulled into submission. The seemingly harmless wind chimes morph into the cadence and timber of something destructive and sinister. Even if you are on your guard, you are not going to be ready for the abrupt end. Signifying eternity, perhaps?

Not the Love We Dream Of (Piano Version)
Again, we are treated to the stark piano notes winding through the introduction to this song. Slowed down and purposeful, almost funereal, we are reminded of mortality, mistakes, and failed missions. It is definitely a song of introspection, but with the change-up in tone and tempo midway through, Numan informs us musically that there is definitely light at the end of the tunnel.

Dead Sun Rising (Early Version)
This version feels like it is played at a slower speed. Numan’s vocals are the focus with the lush accompaniment of electronica there merely to support the master as he works his craft. It is a delightfully welcome version of the title track, and the perfect close to a perfect CD.

Well done, Gary. You are a perfectionist, and our lives are enriched because of it.

Visit Gary Numan’s website: http://www.numan.co.uk/

“The Fall” official full-length promotional video via YouTube user GaryNumanOfficial:

“The Fall” live by Gary Numan – via YouTube user GaryNumanOfficial:

80’s Music Rules ~ So Does Bobbi Style and the Access 2 Foundation

That sound you hear to the north is not the rumble of a summer afternoon thundershower. It’s not the roar of a fast-approaching tornado, nor a slow-moving, yet powerful hurricane. That whirlwind off in the distance is the sound of a dynamo going from the usual thousands of revolutions per second to about a million.

The dynamo has a name—Bobbi Style—and the source of his energy is Access 2.

I showcased this perpetual-motion musician last fall (check out the post here). The article discusses Bobbi’s dream of “Bob-friendly” disabled-accessible studios to accommodate all musicians comfortably, no matter their physical limitations. Since then, Bobbi has formed the Access 2 Foundation, sent out a call for help to a world-wide music community, and the responses have been overwhelming. He is closer to realizing a dream that will benefit countless of musicians who would otherwise be physically deterred from sharing their creativity.

Bobbi has asked people like me to get his vision out there, to see if there are folks who can help to make it happen. He has shared with me that to even get one studio up and running, along with all of the special considerations needed to make the equipment and the location itself handicapped-accessible, it costs a minimum of $30-60,000. But, being the driven and optimistic man that he is, he has not let that daunting proposition stop him.

Already, he has completed work on a studio in Vancouver, British Columbia. There are further negotiations in process for studios in California, Nevada, Florida, and several in his native UK. He needs assistance to make these visions a reality. All he is asking for is a donation of time, talent, or treasure, whatever you feel comfortable with, to make his dream come true.

Time – Volunteers are needed to promote, advertise, and help with setting up the studios.

Talent – Bobbi plans release a compilation CD of songs that musicians have donated for the cause sometime this August. All proceeds will go to fund the foundation. Bobbi himself is busy writing and recording for this project. He reports:

“There are currently 38 bands/artists committed to the CD Synthetic Frequencies (it’s an industrial/EBM album). We’re now looking for more mainstream and multiple-genre artists/bands.”

Treasure – Items needed include: music equipment and accessories, instruments, memorabilia that can be auctioned, studio space, and cash.

It’s even helpful to go to the Access 2 site on FaceBook, “Like” it and leave a comment. Bobbi appreciates any show of support for this important cause. Whatever you feel you can do, please contact Bobbi directly at bobbi.style@access2foundation.com.

Access 2 site on FB: http://www.facebook.com/Access2Foundation
Access 2 Website: http://www.access2foundation.com/

Be sure to familiarize yourself with this amazing artist.

“Like A Bullet” via YouTube user Bobbi Style:

80’s Music Rules ~ More from Retrospect CFRC-FM ~ 04-26-11


Once again, life got in the way and I was not able to compile the list for last night’s Retrospect. Thank you, Ed for sending it along – I listened to the show, and I am very appreciative of the Gary Numan dedication. It made my night.

CFRC-FM Playlist April 26, 2011

Basement of Carruthers Hall in Queens University, Kingston, Ontario

ED-FM ~ Retrospect

80’s Music That Doesn’t Suck
If the “Listen Live” link on the CFRC Website doesn’t work, copy and paste this URL into your Windows Media Player: http://sunsite.queensu.ca:8000/
Join us in the Chat Room during the show – either click the link on the right menu under the Rave and Roll graphic, or here.
To listen to any shows that you may have missed, go to the CFRC website and look up the archives under the “Programming” drop-down menu. You can enjoy Ed’s previous shows in one-hour increments.

Gary Numan – We Have A Technical (ext)
Psyche – Insatiable
Cassandra Complex – One Millionth Happy Customer
Nina Hagen – African Reggae
Voice – Business as Usual In Beruit
Kraftwerk – The Model (catobonic Mix)
Band Of Outsiders – Skylight
Pukka Orchestra – Weekened (Comes Alive)
Clash – The Guns Of Brixton
Chalk Circle – Me, Myself and I
Frankie Goes to Hollywood – Welcome to The Pleasuredome
Siouxsie and The Banshees – Kiss Them For Me (ext)
Arkitex – First World Calling
Yello – Moon On Ice
Martha and The Muffins – Swimming
Echo and The Bunnymen – Over The Wall
Dead Can Dance – Ubiquitous Mr. Lovegrove

The Secret Life Of Numanoids ~ Part Three

Please do not copy any portion of this article without the express written consent of the original author. Requests for permission may be left in the form of a comment on https://raveandroll.wordpress.com.

Paul Chandler ~ UK

Paul Chandler was kind enough to agree to be interviewed about what it’s like to be a Numanoid. A fan since 1978, he is one of the core, long-time group of fans that have followed Gary Numan since the very beginning of his career.

When asked, “What drew you to Gary Numan?” Paul had this to say:

“The early electronic sound and Gary’s vocal and image style is what drew me to Gary Numan. I was into music from an early age and was quite happy listening to bands like Slade and other glam rock artists. I did get bored quickly with the pop moulding that seemed to always happen; nothing different was going on, and I needed something that was not mainstream. Punk hit me straight away as it was a great escape from the humdrum. When I first bought (Tubeway Army’s) “That’s Too Bad,” I didn’t think that this was just another punk record. The music may have been of the same trend, but it was Numan’s vocals that drew me, and I felt that this was not quite right for a ‘punk’ record. “Bombers” confirmed that Tubeway Army were not typical punk at all, and something else was waiting to be unleashed! Replicas and The Pleasure Principle were the type of music that I had been waiting for! Ever since, I have filled my life with so much music and all because of Gary Numan and his style and uniqueness.”

Paul continues with an explanation of what Numan’s music means to him. “His music means everything to me. After hearing “Are ‘Friends’ Electric?” it blew my mind! His music from the early days still means as much to me now as it ever did. It was like having someone be there for you at a difficult time and they came through for you; a friend who is always there for you.”

“Are ‘Friends’ Electric?” via YouTube user scruffyonion:

Asked to provide the name of his favorite Gary Numan LP, Paul candidly responds, “Can I have 3? The Pleasure Principle, Replicas, and Telekon.”

Fortunately for Paul, there is not a limit in this series for how many favorite songs a Numanoid might list. He cites the following as his favorites:

“Here goes… Listen to the Sirens/Steel and You/Something’s in the House/Me! I Disconnect from You/Are ‘Friends’ Electric?/Praying to the Aliens/You Are in My Vision/We Are So Fragile/Airlane/Metal/Films/M.E/Conversation/Cars/On Broadway (Live)/This Wreckage/The Aircrash Bureau/Telekon/Remind Me to Smile/We Are Glass/I’m an Agent/I Dream of Wires/I Die: You Die/Slowcar to China/She’s Got Claws/Crash/I Sing Rain/Love Needs No Disguise/Music for Chameleons/This Is My House/We Take Mystery (To Bed)/Noise Noise/Warriors/The Iceman Comes/This Prison Moon/My Centurion/Sister Surprise/My Car Slides/Berserker/Cold Warning/Pleasure Skin/Creatures/Tricks/God Only Knows/Anthem/No Shelter/My Breathing/Unknown And Hostile/This is Emotion/Hunger/Voix/Respect/I Don’t Believe/Soul Protection/Confession/The Skin Game/A Question of Faith/Scar/Love and Napalm/Dominion Day/Prophecy/Dark/An Alien Cure/Pure/Walking With Shadows/Rip/My Jesus/Listen to My Voice/ I Can’t Breathe/Hybrid/Halo/Slave/In a Dark Place/Haunted/Before You Hate It.”

Paul recalls his most exciting Gary Numan moment as, “The first time I heard “Are ‘Friends’ Electric?” and waiting for new albums!”

As for his favorite way to express his love for Gary Numan, Paul states, quite simply, “Loyalty.”

Paul continues, “When you follow an artist who has changed your life and given you an opening to absorb various other music, you do feel the highs and lows of their career. You want them to rule the world of music and to climb back into the limelight,when all goes dark and comes to perhaps a point of no return. When times were bleak for Gary Numan, regarding record sales etc., I always knew he would find his way again! With each record that was released, I kept hoping that this would be the one!

“Some may not approve of his vocal and music style, but there is much more to Gary Numan than meets the eye. You can hear on tracks such as “Crash” and “This Wreckage” that his vocals can be stretched. Often, because of his distinctive vocals, Numan is dismissed for having a high vocal range. I think that this is far from the truth! These vocal tones are what make him unique, and the great artist that he is and always will be!

“’Nuff said.”

80’s Music Rules ~ Criminally Underrated Artists/Bands ~ Gary Numan on the Brink of Something Great

Copyright 2011 Mimi

Gary Numan gave his fans a taste of what’s in store from the upcoming and long-awaited album Dead Son Rising. He posted an announcement that segments from three of the album’s songs were available to preview on his site NuWorld.

The three songs are titled, “The Fall,” “Captured Underground Noise Transmission” (please, no comments about the acronym this title forms), and “When The Sky Bleeds, He Will Come.” All three are killer tunes, with Gary Numan’s signature Gothic/industrial sound apparent in each. There’s a full live version of “The Fall” on YouTube that we have been enjoying for some time. All of this begs the question, “When is the long-awaited album going to be released?”

Fans are hoping for a release prior to the Back To The Phuture shows scheduled for the Manchester Academy and The Troxy April 1 & 2. We have learned to live with a great span of time between releases because Gary is a notoriously detail-oriented perfectionist. No complaints there. His collections produced and released since 1994, although painfully few and far between, have been magnificently crafted works of which he deserves to be very proud.

Just a random aside – I posted a comment similar to this on David Marsden’s site in a discussion about what’s wrong with today’s music: The boss and I had an interesting non-work discussion the other day. He is a classically trained musician (as is my husband). I had the boss listen to “Angel Wars” by Gary Numan, and he made mention of the use of the tritone or “devil’s note” in the song. It seems that this tonal dissonance is used by many non-mainstream musicians, and it gives a more raw and cutting edge to the music. This tends to be the music I am most drawn to, because it evokes more than just an aural response – it actually resonates within the body, adding a physical piece to the overall experience.

If you haven’t experienced Sacrifice (1994), Exile (1997), Pure (2000), or Jagged (2006) with your entire being, you are missing out on some of the most cutting-edge and vital dark wave music made over the last 17 years. Successful as a punk, post-punk, then synth-wave pioneer, Gary Numan has never shied away from experimentation and reinvention. But, he really hit his stride when he crossed over to the heavier side of music. He bares his soul for all to see, building a safe haven for all of our darkest and deepest emotions to dwell as we lose ourselves in the hard-edged tunes born of his own emotion-riddled creations.

Am I anxious for more brilliant Gothic/industrial Gary Numan in the form of Dead Son Rising? Oh, yeah.

Go to Gary Numan’s official website, where you can purchase his music, DVDs and other licensed merchandise.

The Fall” via YouTube user wwwdeadheavencouk:

The Angel Wars” via YouTube user voypacuenca:

Pure” via YouTube user deadliner: 

Haunted” via YouTube user knightvision:

Studio Album Discography

Tubeway Army (1978)
Replicas (1979)
The Pleasure Principle (1979)
Telekon (1980)
Dance (1981)
I, Assassin (1982)
Warriors (1983)
Berserker (1984)
The Fury (1985)
Strange Charm (1986)
Metal Rhythm (1988)
Automatic (1989)
Outland (1991)
Machine and Soul (1992)
The Radial Pair: Video Soundtrack (1994)
Sacrifice (1994)
Human (unreleased) (1995)
Exile (1997)
Pure (2000)
Jagged (2006)
Replicas Redux (2008)
The Pleasure Principle 30th Anniversary Edition (2009)