Since September 2010, this blog has recorded the journey of this middle-aged man as I attempt to listen to all the music in my CD collection. CDs revisited in their entirety from start to finish - no skipping tracks, no shuffle. CDs only - no vinyl, no tapes, no downloads. And just as CD technology (and the album format itself) becomes obsolete. I'm no music critic, just a music junkie with too much time on my hands.

Saturday, April 7, 2018

Simple Minds - Sparkle in the Rain (1984)

Note: this release was originally purchased as a LP, later replaced by a CD.

In which Jim Kerr and his band begin to leave behind the subtle atmospheric arrangements of New Gold Dream and move towards a raw, arena rock sound. It's different, sure, but I can like this version of Simple Minds just as much as the older versions, right? I've long maintained that if this album had been released a year later following the #1 soundtrack tune Don't You (Forget About Me), it would have been huge, much like Once Upon A Time. It's all timing.

Smash Hits, February 2, 1984, p. 29.

I've often confessed to not being much of a lyrics guy, and I have no idea what Kerr is singing about, but I continue to be attracted to the lyrical imagery coupled with the pseudo-Christian iconographic art direction of Malcolm Garrett's  Assorted iMaGes.

Peak on the US Billboard Top 200 chart: #64
Peak on Cash Box album chart: #81

Tracks: The album is front-loaded and I'll confess to listening to side one much more than side two. My top picks are Up On the Catwalk, Speed Your Love To Me, Waterfront, and The Kick Inside Of Me. Second tier goodness includes Book of Brilliant Things, White Hot Day, and Shake Off The Ghosts. The filler tracks are East At Easter, Street Hassle, and C Moon Cry Like A Baby.

Personal Memory Associated with this CD: My good friend Jim (who introduced me to so much good music) had joined the Navy in the summer of 1983, but we corresponded every so often via snail mail. In these letters, he continued to suggest albums I might like. He mentioned this one, I heard the opening track and bought the LP without hearing anything else. It was the spring of my senior year in high school and there was so much going on and so much good music to hear that this fantastic album quickly got lost in the shuffle, sadly.

Previously revisited for the blog:
Acoustic (2016)
Glittering Prize (1992)
Real Life (1991)
Once Upon a Time (1985)
New Gold Dream (81-82-83-84) (1982)
New Gold Dream (81-82-83-84): Deluxe Box Set
Sons and Fascination/Sister Feelings Call (1981)

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