HomeMusicAlgy Ward, founding frontman of Tank and onetime member of

Algy Ward, founding frontman of Tank and onetime member of

Algy Ward, the founding frontman of cult British heavy metal band Tank, has died at the age of 63 after suffering from recurring health issues.

Ward, born Alasdair Mackie Ward, reportedly passed away last Wednesday (May 17th) at a hospital in Tunbridge Wells, Kent. The news was confirmed by Tank guitarist Mick Tucker, who posted the following message on social media:

“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 ….”

Before forming Tank, Ward got his start as a musician as the bassist for Australian punk act The Saints, performing on their acclaimed 1978 albums Eternally Yours and Prehistoric Sounds. He would then exit The Saints to become the bassist for seminal UK punk act The Damned for their 1979 effort Machine Gun Etiquette.

After a fallout with The Damned drummer Rat Scabies, Ward left the group and was inspired by Lemmy and Motörhead to form Tank in 1980. Ward and company even enlisted Motörhead guitarist Fast Eddie Clarke to produce their debut, 1982’s Filth Hounds of Hades — an underground classic of the NWOBHM movement.

Tank went through numerous lineup changes with Ward at the helm, with the band releasing a total of five full-length LPs during its initial 1980s run. Tank would go on hiatus following 1987’s self-titled album due to a lack of commercial success and turmoil surrounding the creative direction of the group, though Ward would eventually release more music under the Tank name beginning with 2002’s comeback Still at War.

Much of Tank’s output has been preserved and reissued by German imprint High Roller Records, where you can find the band’s records on vinyl.

At one point, following legal disputes, there were two versions of Tank, one led by Ward and the other led by Tucker and fellow guitarist Cliff Evans.

Revisit Tank’s Filth Hounds of Hades below.

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