The Godfather of electronic music is on a one-way trip to crack America, returning to the studio for the first time in nearly a decade. Android is a celebration of a music-making pioneer and the love story that helped him turn his life around.
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At the end of the 1970s, Gary Numan found himself to be one of the world's biggest-selling recording artists, "Are 'Friends' Electric?" and "Cars" were huge hits, no one had heard, or seen, anyone like Gary Numan. The Asperger's syndrome that helped forge Numan's tunnel-like ambition, informing his music and image, also brought problems. At a time when the public knew little about the condition, the press labeled him a freak, one paper suggested his parents should have been doctored for giving birth to him. Depression, anxiety, near bankruptcy and a long period in the wilderness followed. Then Numan fell in love with his biggest fan, Gemma, who helped him rediscover his passion for music.
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Numan turns out to be a lot more interesting than I recalled, and his music certainly has held up in ways I wouldn't have imagined. The documentary does a great job of letting you into the world of an introverted hermit, who somehow married one of his fans and that turned out to be a really good thing. It's overlong by about 10 minutes, but the part about his current work provide a pretty impressive display of artistic firepower for someone 30 years from his celebrated work, and there are some surprises about the early stuff too. This is a really solid music doc, something you should enjoy even if you're not a fan of Gary Numan's oeuvre.
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