Halliday and Garcia were introduced to each other by fellow musician Dave Stewart of Eurythmics; Garcia had played bass guitar as part of Eurythmics' live band in 1983–84 and on two of their studio albums, while Halliday was signed to Stewart's Anxious Records label as a solo artist. The pair formed an ill-fated group named State of Play in the mid-1980s before parting ways, embarking on a no less ill-fated solo career (Halliday) and further stints as a backing musician (Garcia), and then reuniting for a more long-term partnership in Curve.
Curve released three acclaimed and increasingly successful EPs throughout 1991 on Stewart's label Anxious Records, and made an impact on the UK album charts in 1992 with their debut Anxious LP Doppelgänger. The group also toured extensively during this period, with Halliday and Garcia being supported on stage by two additional guitarists (Debbie Smith, later of Echobelly, and Alex Mitchell) and a drummer (Steve Monti, formerly of Ian Dury and the Blockheads). Highlights of Curve's live career included a performance at the 1992 Glastonbury Festival, and a package tour of the United States with The Jesus and Mary Chain and Spiritualized.
Curve's second LP, the harder-edged Cuckoo (1993), did not repeat the UK Top 20 success of the band's debut. That fact, and the stressfulness of the tour in support of the record, may have contributed to Halliday and Garcia's decision, in 1994, to disband the group.
Curve returned to the music business in 1996 with the EP Pink Girl With the Blues; the following year, they released "Chinese Burn", the first single to be taken from their third all-new album Come Clean (1998). That LP, a set of songs displaying a more pronounced influence of electronic music than earlier releases, was met with a certain amount of acclaim and commercial success, which encouraged the group to continue their recording career. They continued to do small-scale live shows in and around Europe.
The follow-up to Come Clean was an internet-only collection titled Open Day at the Hate Fest; it was quickly followed by the all-new Gift (both 2001). During this period, Curve were almost as prolific as during their first three years, releasing another web-only, LP-length collection (The New Adventures of Curve) in 2002, and various download-only tracks via their official website.
A 2-CD retrospective entitled The Way of Curve summarised the group's output in 2004, before Halliday announced, in early 2005, that she had left Curve for good. Whether this is Halliday and Garcia's final curtain call, or just their most recent hiatus, remains to be seen.
For the most part, Curve's music was typified by heavy beats and densely-layered guitar tracks set against Halliday's sometimes airy, sometimes intense vocalizations of lyrics that frequently explored topics such as alienation, addiction, lust, romance, and love on the wane. While the band's early releases were either lumped in, by certain British music reviewers, with the then-popular shoegazing style of guitar-based rock music, or said to borrow heavily from Gothic rock, their second LP Cuckoo was noted to feature a broader set of influences, such as industrial and electronica. On Come Clean, and the records that followed, the electronic portions of the band's music became more prominent - to the extent of some recordings from the final years of their career featuring hardly any guitar sounds. Perhaps also as a result of this development, fans of the group are divided as to which Curve release is the most satisfying.
With regard to the group's significance to the development of 'alternative' rock and pop music, it has been claimed by both Curve aficionados and music writers that British/American grunge-pop band Garbage appropriated large portions of Curve's musical template, and constructed from it more 'mainstream' material, albeit with a certain 'edge' remaining. Toni Halliday has occasionally commented on the comparisons between both groups, stating at one point - in an interview conducted by Volume magazine in 1996 - that she could "see bits of Garbage in what we've done, just like we see bits of Sonic Youth or the Valentines or really any band that was doing something supposedly outside the norm. In a way it's very flattering to be tied in with [Garbage drummer and co-producer] Butch Vig, not just because he's a brilliant human being, but because he's a brilliant producer, and he's worked on some of our favourite records. But eventually Garbage are a pop band, and Curve were never a pop band."
Halliday has, on other occasions, also offered contrasting opinions. Interviewed by Cosmic Debris Magazine in 2001, she reminisced on how "[Curve had] put records out and we always thought they were nice little pop albums full of nice little pop songs. I've always thought that Curve have made great pop. It might come in a different guise to what people presume is pop, you know, like... it doesn't sound like Backstreet Boys pop, but still, there's melody there, and there are hooks, and we've done that on every record we've ever made. [...] We've been called 'goth' in England, and we've been called 'noise merchants' and the whole gamut of labels, but not once have we been called a pop band, and I'd really like to be called that."
Dean Garcia is currently composing for, performing with, and producing the bands SPC ECO and The Chrono Logic. Dean's daughter, Rose Berlin, is the front-woman for SPC ECO. In February 2009, SPC ECO released their first album, 3-D, available directly from the band's website, as well as Noiseplus Music, Collide's label with whom Dean collaborated with on The Secret Meeting.
On March 3rd, 2008, two unreleased songs by Toni's new band Chatelaine surfaced on Myspace. The songs are credited Halliday/Dowd/Salmon. Halliday is currently recording for her new project, Chatelaine slated for a 2009 release.
EPs and singles
- Blindfold (1991; UK #68): "Ten Little Girls" (featuring JC-001)/"I Speak Your Every Word"/"Blindfold"/"No Escape From Heaven"
- Frozen (1991; UK #34): "Coast Is Clear"/"The Colour Hurts"/"Frozen"/"Zoo"
- Cherry (1991; UK #36): "Clipped"/"Die Like a Dog"/"Galaxy"/"Cherry"; 10" vinyl also includes "I Speak Your Every Word" (featuring JC-001)
- Faît Accompli (1992; UK #22): "Faît Accompli" (single version)/"Arms Out"/"Sigh" (CD & 12" vinyl); "Faît Accompli" (extended mix)/"Coast Is Clear" (live)/"Die Like a Dog" (live) (12" vinyl)
- Horror Head (1992; UK #31): "Horror Head" (remix)/"Falling Free"/"Mission From God"/"Today Is Not the Day"
- Blackerthreetracker (1993; UK #39): "Missing Link" (single version)/"On the Wheel"/"Triumph"
- Blackerthreetrackertwo (1993): "Missing Link" (screaming bird mix)/"Rising" (headspace mix)/;Half the Time" (honey tongue mix)
- Superblaster (1993): "Superblaster" (remix)/"Low and Behold"/"Nothing Without Me"
- Pink Girl With the Blues (1996; UK #97): "Pink Girl With the Blues"/"Recovery"/"Black Delilah"
- Chinese Burn (1997): CDs and 12" vinyl include a set of remixes by Paul van Dyk, Steve Osborne, Lunatic Calm, Witchman, and Headcase, as well as "Robbing Charity" and "Come Clean".
- Coming up Roses (1998; UK #51): CDs and 12" vinyl include a set of remixes by Jeremy Wheatley, Talvin Singh, Blue Amazon, Danny Saber, and Kevin Shields, as well as "Midnight & Royal" and "Habit".
- Perish (2002; UK #168): "Perish"/"Want More Need Less"/"Recovery" (2002 version)
- Want More Need Less (2003): "Want More Need Less"/"My Tiled White Floor"/"Bleeding Heart"
- Doppelgänger (1992; UK #11)
- Cuckoo (1993; UK #29)
- Come Clean (1998; UK #103)
- Gift (2001)
- The New Adventures of Curve (2002; Internet-only release)
- Pubic Fruit (1992)
- Radio Sessions (1993)
- Open Day at the Hate Fest (2001; Internet-only release)
- The Way of Curve (2004; UK #197)
- Peace Together (1993) - performed "What a Waste" with Ian Dury (with benefits to the Youth of Northern Ireland)
- Guest producers on Gary Numan's remix album Hybrid in 2003
- Released a track for Frequency (a Music-based Puzzle Game on PlayStation 2) called "Worst Mistake", not released on CD.
- Remixed the single "Just Say Yes" for the Cure in 2001, which was released officially in 2004 on the boxset Join the Dots: B-Sides and Rarities 1978-2001 (The Fiction Years)
Biography from Wikipedia