Thomas Leer (born Thomas Wishart, 1953, Port Glasgow, Scotland) is a Scottish musician. He has released a number of albums and singles as a solo artist, and was also one half (the other being Claudia Brücken) of the 1980s electropop band Act.
|Birth name||Thomas Wishart|
|Born||1953 (age 66–67)|
Port Glasgow, Scotland
|Genres||Minimal wave, synthpop, new wave|
|Associated acts||Pressure, Act, The The (1983)|
Born in Port Glasgow, Scotland, Leer played in several local experimental pop groups in the early to mid-1970s, moving to London when the punk rock scene was at its height. He formed the punk band Pressure, but by 1978 had moved on to music influenced by synthpop and Krautrock bands such as Can. That year, he self-financed his debut single, "Private Plane". Although it was recorded in his own flat and was only issued in 650 copies on his own label, it gained significant attention, with NME naming it "Single of the Week". (It was also included in the fantastic compilation album Business As Usual, on Cherry Red/CRI.) In 1979, he released the album The Bridge in collaboration with Robert Rental. In 1981, he signed to Cherry Red, his first release for the label being the 4 Movements EP. After two further releases on the label, he was signed by Arista Records, releasing three further singles and his debut full-length solo album, The Scale of Ten in late 1985.
Two years later, he formed the duo Act along with ex-Propaganda singer Claudia Brücken, signing to ZTT Records. The duo released four singles (including the minor UK hit "Snobbery and Decay") and an album, Laughter, Tears and Rage, before splitting up, with Brücken pursuing a solo career. Leer retired at this point, but returned in 2003 with a new album and in 2009 on the track "Tonight", from the Stefano Panunzi album A Rose and continues to be musically active.
- The Bridge (1979), Industrial (with Robert Rental) – UK Indie No. 9, reissued (1992), Mute/Grey Area
- Contradictions (1982), Cherry Red – UK Indie No. 8, double 12-inch mini-LP
- Letter from America (1982), Cherry Red/Cachalot – double 12-inch LP
- The Scale of Ten (1985), Arista – reissued on CD in expanded form (2004), BMG
- Conversation Peace (2003), Avatar
- Parts of a Greater Hole (2004), Karvavena
- From Sci-Fi to Barfly (2007), Future Historic – digital only release, CD release on Klanggalerie, 2015
- 1982 (2015), Future Historic – digital only release, previously unreleased material except for one track, CD release on Klanggalerie, 2018
- 1991 (2015), Future Historic – digital only release, previously unreleased material
- 1979 (2016), Future Historic – digital only release, previously unreleased material, CD release on Klanggalerie/LP release on Dark Entries, both 2017
- Contradictions - The Cherry Red Collection (1994), Cherry Red
- Strong. Martin C. (2003) "Thomas Leer", in The Great Indie Discography, Canongate, ISBN 1-84195-335-0
- "Dark Entries announces Thomas Leer & Joe Crow re-issues | Culture Addicts". Web.archive.org. May 28, 2015.
- "Minimal Wave Records | Thomas Leer Interview (with Thomas Leer) | Interviews". Minimalwave.com.
- Lazell, Barry (1997) Indie Hits 1980-1989, Cherry Red Books, ISBN 0-9517206-9-4