Formed in 1985, Zodiac Mindwarp And The Love Reaction projected an image encompassing everything from sex maniacs and party animals to leather-clad bikers. Put together by Zodiac (b. Mark Manning), a former graphic designer, their image and attitude was always more interesting than their music. With twin guitarists Cobalt Stargazer and Flash Bastard, plus Trash D. Garbage and Slam Thunderhide on bass and drums, respectively, they were the ultimate science-fiction garage band, influenced by Alice Cooper, Motörhead and the Stooges. After releasing the mini-album High Priest Of Love on the independent Food labe in 1986l, they were signed by Mercury Records, who funded the recording of Tattooed Beat Messiah. Although rigidly formularized, it spawned the UK Top 20 hits ‘Prime Mover’ and ‘Back Seat Education’, which were accompanied by expensive and controversial videos.
The creative juices soon ran dry, however. Zodiac’s backing band disintegrated and Mercury dropped him from its roster in 1989. In 1991, he re-formed the band with Stargazer, Thunderhide and new bass player Suzy X, releasing the single ‘Elvis Died For You’. Despite signing to European label Musidisc, little further progress was made. Manning later lived up to his reputation by collaborating with the KLF’s Bill Drummond in 1994 on the semi-pornographic work, A Bible Of Dreams. He established himself as a writer with a number of further tomes, including the salacious Fucked By Rock (2001) and Collateral Damage (2002). He revived Zodiac Mindwarp And The Love Reaction in the early 00s and recorded a number of new studio albums.