Thanks again for all the feedback after the initial part of this series.
The Top 10 of the singles chart in the final week of February 1983 was a very strange mix. Michael Jackson, Bonnie Tyler, Kajagoogoo and Toto were in the top four places, but underneath all of that, you would find:-
mp3: Eurythmics – Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This) (#5)
mp3: Tears For Fears – Change (#7)
mp3: Madness – Tomorrow’s Just Another Day (#8)
mp3: Fun Boy Three – Tunnel Of Love (#10)
For the sake of completeness, Musical Youth and The Thomson Twins made up the remainder of the Top 10. There were also a couple of very interesting singles entering the chart a bit lower down, but they’ll be part of next month’s story.
I didn’t think to look at the album charts last time round, mainly on the basis that I reckoned the month of January would be skewed by the unusual sales activity that occurs every festive period. As it turned out, I actually missed that Feline, the Stranglers seventh studio album, had been released in the second week in January and had gone into the charts at #4. The album had been preceded, in late 1992, by this single:-
mp3: The Stranglers – European Female
Nobody realised it at the time, but Feline would be the last of their albums to reach the Top 10 and that European Female would be just about their last original single to reach the Top 20. Up until now it had been continuous success for The Stranglers going back to 1977, but their commercial and critical peaks had now been scaled.
12 thoughts on “DON’T LOOK BACK IN ANGER (2)”
Intersting that this was the end of the line for the Stranglers in the UK. I feel like Skin Deep and Only the Sun from their next two albums were pretty big radio hits in the US (at least on alternative rock stations out in Cali).
Was also about to comment that skin deep and always the sun are cracking singles
This chart also saw the peak position (79) of one of my all-time top 10 singles: ‘Perfect’ by The The.
From then it went down and was out after 3 weeks 😦
The story of my relationship with this single is long and complicated and worthy of a complete exposition.
Of the four MP3s I enjoyed three. Sorry, Madness.
It’s such a shame that Into The Gap was the LP that made, and subsequently broke, the Thomson Twins. Hold Me Now, in the early days, was a fun listen that paled after too much airplay. With each single that was released I lost interest in the band – who 1993 supported Bowie. They were excellent. He was not. Hello, Icehouse! I never miss an opportunity to punt Icehouse who played just before Thomson Twins – and for me – stole the gig. I still can’t believe I managed to see one of my favourite bands of that time.
’83 was a special year.
Tremendous selection of pop songs
Quote: “There were also a couple of very interesting singles entering the chart a bit lower down, but they’ll be part of next month’s story.”
Hoping next months story will include the JoBoxers, Orange Juice and Big Country who are all bubbling up just outside the top 30 in this chart………….all great songs!
* Correction from previous post – ‘Perfect’ by The The was now at 94 by 27th Feb (no. 79 position was Feb 20th).
There are a few Stranglers songs from ’83 and after that are…pleasant listens. But they were not the same band once they moved over to Epic. Not even close.
More to the point, “Skin Deep” and “Always The Sun” were top class Stranglers material! But there’s no shame in The Stranglers having a six year run on the charts with their singles. That’s about twice as long as most chart runs where if an artist gets three years of hits they are doing very well.
“Change” might be my favorite Tears For Fears single. That instrumental middle eight with the synth riff and guitar counterpoint was pretty stunning stuff. That first album was it for TFF. Anything after that was weaker sauce. By the third album, I lost all interest.
Icehouse would have definitely stole the gig from Mr. Bowie in 1983 and even 1983’s Peak Thompson Twins trio era. One of the best New Wave rock bands and they could deliver live. You hit the nail on the head with “Into The Gap.” I prefer the first two Thompson Twins albums but at least “Quick Step [And Side Kick]” was almost as good. Rapid dropoff in quality following that one. Yeah, the first time you heard “Hold Me Now” it was a good single. The 127th? Not so much.
I always thought afterward that Tom Bailey should have given that hit to someone else; Kim Wilde, maybe? I can understand the thought that “this song will be massive” but if I wrote something that MOR, I’d protect my brand by giving it to another artist. Still collect the royalties without compromising my integrity, but that was a hard decision to make so he has to live with it afterward. It’s the type of hit that alters the thrust of the band afterward. Much like Spandau Ballet’s “True.” Spare me all of the attempts at another “True” that followed that hit by Spandau Ballet!
It’s probably age (I turned 16 this week in Feb 83) combined with nostalgia and all that carry-on but I’d go with this being my favorite year in music.
TFF were great that year. The two good Eurythmics singles were out by Christmas. Madness: even the weaker singles wee worth a listen. FB3 would’ve been great in any era. Same goes for most of Thriller. Stranglers; Always The Sun is second only to Golden Brown for me.
A couple of the also-rans in that top ten would’ve been better than anything else on offer just a couple of years later.
I often wonder why some songs sound so much better here than on the radio.
I guess it’s the same phenomenon as when my wife is around. Some songs sound a lot less good then.
But I love her.