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Interview: Gary Numan

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‘My Asperger’s is an absolute advantage,’ says eighties electronic icon Gary Numan.

He believes the condition has helped him focus on where he’s going musically, shields him from negative reviews and ‘gives far more than it takes,’ he continues.

We’re chatting backstage at the 62nd Ivor Novello Awards, where he’s just picked up the coveted Inspiration Award, and he confesses he’s not so good at the ‘ceremony thing’.

No matter though; his indelible mark on British music over the last 30-odd years keeps the accolades rolling in regardless.

In 1979 he recorded Are Friends Electric with his band Tubeway Army on a shoestring, creating one of synth-pop’s finest moments and influencing a generation of musicians from Juan Atkins to Kanye West.

The track was swiftly followed by Cars, Gary’s international number one single that went on to define electronic music as a popular commercial entity.

Since then, his discography has grown to include scores of studio albums and groundbreaking collaborations, while his influence on electronica and industrial music has gone from strength to strength.

We find out more about what makes him tick, why he got rid of all his old analogue synths and learn about his ‘menacing and miserable’ new LP…

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