|AsiaAsia's debut album exploded onto the music scene in March 1982 with several Top 10 singles and sales exceeding 7 million copies. This "supergroup", featuring bassist/vocalist John Wetton, drummer Carl Palmer, keyboardist Geoff Downes, and guitarist Steve Howe, was the logical successor to their collective bands of the 70s - Yes, ELP, King Crimson, and The Buggles.The group came together in the spring of 1981. John Wetton's acclaimed progressive rock band UK had collapsed a few years earlier. With the help of manager Brian Lane, he wanted to form a new group with guitarist Steve Howe, best known for his work with British Prog superstars, Yes. Drummer Carl Palmer came into the fold next, having just completed a decade of platinum releases and sold out tours with Emerson, Lake & Palmer. Keyboardist Geoff Downes, who replaced Rick Wakeman in Yes for the Drama album, had previously been half of the pop duo The Buggles. They stormed the charts in 1979 with the timeless classic "Video Killed The Radio Star".Labelled a "supergroup" by critics and the media from the onset, it was a tag they had never asked for. Asia's music (and rock 'n' roll charisma) developed organically and effortlessly. Though all four men had seen chart-topping success in their previous bands, Asia had a special chemistry that fans and music industry insiders were quick to recognize.The first Asia album went into production in June of 1981 with producer Mike Stone at Marcus Studios and Virgin Townhouse in London. Stone, who had worked on hits for Journey and Queen, also knew the band had an amazing musical ability. The band spent five months writing, arranging, and recording nine songs for its debut that included such classics as "Heat of the Moment", "Only Time Will Tell", and "Sole Survivor."As soon as the album was completed, Geffen knew it had a winner on its hands. The upstart label immediately began turning the wheels of its enormous promotional machine weeks before the LP's release, to help propel the album to the top of the charts. Asia had only weeks to rehearse for a 30 city US tour that commenced on April 22 in Potsdam, NY, of all places! By the time the band reached the 12th stop on tour (Rochester, NY) on May 5th, the debut album had already hit #1 on the Billboard charts.