Their debut single ‘Pulsing’ was recorded in the 2ZM Studios, with the band producing (although Ripper Records label owner and 2ZM DJ Bryan Staff gets a co-production credit for arranging and overseeing the session).
‘Pulsing’ was later re-recorded at Wellington’s Marmalade Studios for a limited edition dance mix in 1983.
Pioneers of dance electronica in New Zealand, 'Pulsing' spent 27 weeks in the New Zealand Singles chart, peaking at No.13 in April 1983, some 14 weeks after it first charted, despite the fact it was largely ignored by both mainstream and student radio.
In 1982 former Flight X-7 keyboardist Paul Turney was briefly a member, having come from Gisborne after Jansson had invited him to join. He left when he was disappointed at the irregular live shows.
In mid-1983 they headed off with fellow Wellington post-punkers The Spines on the Pulsing With Punch tour of the lower half of the North Island, promoted by Wellington venue, The Last Resort's Sue Barlow.
Following the tour success, Drey left and was replaced by bassist Wendy Calder from The Spines. After 'Pulsing' The Body Electric released several more well-received singles, two of which 'Dreaming In A Life' and 'Imagination' were moderate hits. The latter, recorded at Auckland’s Harlequin Studios, has become very sought after in recent years, fetching high prices in Europe and the USA.
The Body Electric released their first and only album Presentation And Reality in November 1983. It would spend 3 weeks in the charts, reaching No.32.
Playing sporadically around Wellington in late 1982 and early 1983, the band made its first foray north to Auckland in August 1983, playing at A Certain Bar in Wellesley Street with three shows promoted by Propeller Records' Simon Grigg. Famously, Auckland radio DJ (and general legend) Barry Jenkin hated the electronic sounds and on the first night went behind the stage, pulled the plug and then stormed out.
In early 1984 The Body Electric disbanded. Jansson moved permanently to Auckland, went into record production and had a global smash hit with 'How Bizarre' by OMC in the mid-1990s. Smith went on to later manage The New Zealand Ballet Company.
Presentation And Reality was reissued in March 2020.
Alan Jansson moved north to Auckland and became a highly respected producer. In the mid-1990s he had a global smash hit with How Bizarre by OMC.
Andy Drey - bass, production
Garry Smith - keyboards, production, vocals
Wendy Calder - bass
Paul Turney - keyboards