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Pete Shelley, the leader of the seminal punk band the Buzzcocks, actually had recorded a solo album in 1974, two years before the Buzzcocks formed. Released in 1979, Sky Yen was a collection of electronic music that didn't sound much like his full-time band's blistering guitar pop, yet it did contain the roots of his solo career. After the Buzzcocks disbanded in 1981, Shelley began a solo career which incorporated the electronic experimentations of Sky Yen with the pop sensibilities of his punk singles. Released in 1981, Homosapien showcased this musical merger and resulted in the U.K. hit single, "Homosapien." The following year Shelley released XL1, which added more guitar to his dance-oriented synth pop. Three years later he released his final solo album, Heaven and the Sea, which failed to capture an audience. Shelley then joined the short-lived band Zip; after its breakup, he rejoined the reunited Buzzcocks in 1988.