TANK founder ALGY WARD dead at 63
Alasdair Mackie “Algy” Ward, founder and frontman of British metal legends TANK, has died at the age of 63. He reportedly passed away on May 17 at a hospital in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, United Kingdom after suffering from serious health issues for quite some time.
The news of Algy‘s death was confirmed by TANK guitarist Mick Tucker, who took to his social media to write: “R.I.P Algy… Just heard the sad news my old band mate passed away in hospital last Wednesday May 17th.
“We formed a formidable songwriting team when I joined TANK in 1983 and recorded some great albums along the way and many shows with TANK and the Nicky Moore band who I joined in 1990 with Algy.
“Over the last couple of years we had to carry on without him but hoped one day we could get him back onstage with us.
“A glass will be raised tonight in your honour ….”
Ward first rose to fame by joining the Australian punk rock band THE SAINTS, replacing their former bassist Kym Bradshaw. Ward played with the group on their third single, 1977’s “This Perfect Day”, as well as two albums, “Eternally Yours” and “Prehistoric Sounds”, both released in 1978. A short time later, Ward joined the influential English punk band THE DAMNED and played on the 1979 album “Machine Gun Etiquette” before being fired from the group, reportedly due to a personality clash between him and drummer Rat Scabies.
Ward officially formed TANK in 1980, influenced and inspired by Lemmy and his band MOTÖRHEAD. The trio, rounded out by Peter and Mark Brabbs, released its debut album, 1982’s “Filth Hounds Of Hades”, produced by MOTÖRHEAD guitarist “Fast” Eddie Clarke. Shortly before the release of TANK‘s third record, “This Means War”, Mick Tucker became the band’s second guitarist, and shortly after the release, the Brabbs brothers left. They were replaced by Cliff Evans on guitar, Graeme Crallan on drums, and later Michael Bettel on drums. After their fifth album (which was self-titled) was released in 1987, growing disputes over musical direction and lack of commercial success grew more frequent, which led the band to split in 1989. In 1997, TANK reformed with Ward on vocals and bass, Bruce Bisland on drums, and Tucker and Evans on guitars. They recorded and released one more album under the TANK banner, 2002’s “Still At War”. before legal disputes and recording issues for what was supposed to be their seventh studio album, “Sturmpanzer”, caused the band to split up once again in 2006.
In 2008, a new version of TANK was announced, featuring Tucker and Evans. This version of TANK recorded and released three new albums, 2010’s “War Machine”, 2012’s “War Nation” and 2015’s “Valley Of Tears”, and played a number of live shows. In response, Ward created his own version of TANK and began to work on a new album, which became 2013’s “Breath Of The Pit”. Shortly after this, he teamed up with friend Evo from WARFARE to record a six-track EP titled “Damned Unto Death” under the name EVO/ALGY. Ward later announced that he was in the studio working on the eighth TANK album, “Sturmpanzer”, which was released in November 2018.