R.I.P. Buzzcocks Frontman Pete Shelley

R.I.P. Buzzcocks Frontman Pete Shelley
Pete Shelley, known best as the frontman of English punk outfit Buzzcocks, has died.

The band's management confirmed Shelley's passing, BBC reports, telling the broadcaster he died of a heart attack on Thursday (December 6) in Estonia. He was 63.

Shelley formed Buzzcocks with Howard Devoto in 1976 after the two met in school a year prior. The band released their first EP, Spiral Scratch, in 1977 through their own independent label New Hormones. Devoto soon left the group, leaving Shelley to handle songwriting and vocal duties on top of his work as guitarist.

Buzzcocks then signed to United Artists in 1977, recording a trio of classic albums for the label: 1978's Another Music in a Different Kitchen and Love Bites, and 1979's A Different Kind of Tension. The full-lengths spawned a series of songs that made the U.K. Singles Chart, including "Orgasm Addict," "What Do I Get?" and "Ever Fallen in Love (With Someone You Shouldn't've)."

In 1980, Shelley released his debut solo effort Sky Yen, an experimental electronic record he had initially made in 1974. The following year, Buzzcocks began work on a fourth studio album, only to break up after recording demos for the effort.

Shelley continued his solo career that same year with the release of Homosapien, marking a departure from the punk stylings of Buzzcocks in favour of synthesizers and drum machines. The album's title track was banned by the BBC for "explicit reference to gay sex," though it enjoyed commercial success in Europe and North America.

Shelley's solo career then spawned 1983's XL1 and 1986's Heaven and the Sea before Buzzcocks reformed in 1989. That same year, he released a rerecorded version of "Homosapien" titled "Homosapien II." The band then released their fourth studio LP, Trade Test Transmissions, in 1993.

Shelley and guitarist Steve Diggle remained the two original members of Buzzcocks since the band's 1989 reform. The band's most recent album was 2014's The Way.

As recently reported, the news of Shelley's passing comes as Buzzcocks' ready a new set of reissues. Re-releases of Another Music in a Different Kitchen and Love Bites will arrive on January 25 via Domino. These follow the Domino re-releases of Buzzcocks' debut EP Spiral Scratch and the Time's Up comp earlier this year.

Find reaction to Shelley' passing from listeners and industry counterparts below.