|Origin||Wolverhampton, England, United Kingdom|
|Genres||Alternative rock, space rock, industrial rock, glam rock|
|Labels||Phonogram, WEA, EMI|
|Past members||Jas Mann|
Babylon Zoo were an English rock band formed in 1992 in Wolverhampton. Their song "Spaceman" gained considerable exposure through its use in a Levi's jeans television advert in the United Kingdom in late 1995. Released as the band's debut single on 21 January 1996, it entered the UK Singles Chart at number one. Spaceman led to the band being considered a one hit wonder; they had little success with any subsequent releases.
The band's first single was the song "Spaceman" which had appeared on a Levi's jeans TV advert. Levi's used Spaceman for a UK TV ad after hearing the song on a Manchester radio station. It became the fastest-selling single in the UK since The Beatles' "Can't Buy Me Love". The single sold 420,000 copies in the first week of release, spending 5 weeks at number 1.
Tim Moore wrote that "only failure and embarrassment" followed for Babylon Zoo. An album entitled The Boy with the X-Ray Eyes was produced at Mann's New Atlantis Productions music and video centre. It peaked at #6 on the UK Albums Chart on 17 February, but quickly dropped out of the Top 40, lasting only a further two weeks on the chart. Subsequent singles charted progressively lower, failing to match the success of "Spaceman". The band's reputation was further damaged by a series of scathing live reviews.
In 1999, a follow-up album was released, King Kong Groover. The album received negative reviews and sold 10,000 units, failing to chart in the UK. The singles from the album were "All The Money's Gone", which was released in the UK and Europe and peaked at number forty six on the UK Charts. The second single, a cover of Mott the Hoople's "Honaloochie Boogie", was only released as a promotional single in France. The group disbanded shortly after and Mann moved to India where he spent time working for an aid agency.
Critic Steven Wells wrote that the "Spaceman" single resembling the Levi's advert version for only "about ten seconds", angered many consumers. He reported that Mann drew further ire through self-aggrandising interviews, and noted his ridicule in the media, including from the NME and in a 1997 episode of comedy TV series Brass Eye.
|The Boy with the X-Ray Eyes||February 1996||6||28||BPI: Gold |
|King Kong Groover||February 1999||–||–||-|
|1995||"Spaceman"||1||3||BPI: Platinum||The Boy with the X-Ray Eyes|
|"The Boy with the X-Ray Eyes"||32||–|
|1999||"All the Money's Gone"||46||–||King Kong Groover|
|2000||"Love Lies Bleeding"||–||–||Non-album single|
- Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 38. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
- Sutton, Michael. "Babylon Zoo Biography". Allmusic. Retrieved 7 June 2013.
- Krewen, Nick (23 May 1996). "The keeper of Babylon Zoo". Toronto Star. Retrieved 30 June 2013.
- "For The Record". The Mirror Archived at The Free Library. 20 March 2002. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
- "Entertainment - Will Blur spear Britney?". BBC. 22 February 1999. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
- "Official Charts: Babylon Zoo - Singles". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 11 June 2013.
- Moore, Tim (2012). You are Awful (but I Like You): Travels Through Unloved Britain. Vintage. pp. 157–158. ISBN 0-224-09011-9.
- "1996 Top 40 Official UK Albums Archive 9th March 1996". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 11 June 2013.
- "Spaceman band falls back to earth". Sunday Mercury. The Free Library. 9 May 1999. Retrieved 29 May 2013.
- Babylon Zoo– Honaloochie Boogie
- Where Are They Now? Archived 30 April 2012 at the Wayback Machine
- Wells, Steven (23 January 1999). "This week's singles". NME. Retrieved 25 June 2017.
- Edden, John (21 April 2011). "Whatever happened to... Babylon Zoo". altsound.com. Archived from the original on 29 April 2014. Retrieved 29 May 2013.
- Australian (ARIA Chart) peaks:
- Top 50 peaks: "australian-charts.com > Discography Babylon Zoo". Hung Medien. Retrieved 10 November 2015.
- Top 100 peaks: Ryan, Gavin (2011). Australia's Music Charts 1988–2010. Mt. Martha, VIC, Australia: Moonlight Publishing.