YEAR RELEASED: 1977
CHART ACTION: None
SINGLES: Dangerous Rhythm
OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: I Want to Be a Machine and My Sex had some notice in the UK.
LINEUP: Warren Cann, Chris Cross, Billie Currie, John Foxx, Stevie Shears
WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: A fusion of electronica and UK new wave – this debut ain’t Midge Ure’s Ultravox, and to me, it tests patience at times.
SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: Produced by Brian Eno, you’d expect some electronic tom-foolery, and you do get that. You also get bleak songs like I Want to Be a Machine, which only gets exciting when Currie’s violin makes an appearance about five minutes into it. But there’s more of a guitar-based sound that you maybe would have expected.
Some songs have pretty good moments. They were precursors to Gary Numan and Tubeway Army, but I thought Numan did this stuff better – the alienation, the machine persona, you name it. The only reason this is remembered is what the band became. Plus, I really don’t like Foxx’ vocals. They grate on me. I’d say about half of the songs are good enough for me.
NOTES & MINUTIAE: Before becoming Ultravox! and churning through a few names, they were known as Tiger Lilly and hit with a cover of “Ain’t Misbehavin’”
IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: Yes, some live cuts are appended.
GRADE: C+: It’s probably me – but I’m just not into this Ultravox persona, nor Foxx.