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Music / Dead or Alive

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The band's mid-80s lineup. Left to right: Tim Lever, Pete Burns, Mike Percy, Steve Coy.

Dead or Alive was an English New Wave-New Romantic-Synth-Pop band popular in the 1980's and very early 90's. Their popularity mostly stemmed from their androgynous frontman Pete Burns.note 

Hailing from Liverpool, the band started in 1980 with keyboardist Marty Healey, guitarist Mitch, bassist Sue James, and drummer Joe Musker. The band had a few hits like "I'm Falling" & "Number Eleven", but the rising recognition of other acts like Duran Duran meant the public quickly forgot about them. In response, the line-up was retooled, with Wayne Hussey and Mike Percy becoming the new guitarist and bassist, respectively. After signing on with Epic Records, the singles started rocking the charts around 1984, with music videos on MTV giving the band a much needed boost.


Their albums were popular, if not well-reviewed, until the release of Mad, Bad and Dangerous to Know, which was considered very bad by critics and fans alike (though the Japanese fanbase liked it). After 1988's Nude, the band lost several principal members, essentially making them dead, yet still alive, with three more albums being released from 1995 onward.

Unfortunately, Pete Burns died of a heart attack in 2016, with fellow member Steve Coy dying in 2018, finally causing the band to be dead, not alive.



  • Sophisticated Boom Boom (1984)
  • Youthquake (1985)
  • Mad, Bad and Dangerous to Know (1986)
  • Nude (1988)
    • Nude - Remade Remodelled - (1989) (A Japanese-only remix of Nude)
  • Fan the Flame (Part 1) (1990)
  • Nukleopatra (1995)
  • Fragile (2000) (Another Japanese-only album combining new songs with re-recordings and remixes of existing material)
    • Unbreakable_The Fragile Remixes (2000) (Different remixes of the Fragile songs—unreleased outside Japan until 2017)

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