||DANCING ABOUT ARCHITECTURE: THREE '80s "One-Hit Wonders"
by Marc 'Moose' Moder
This article shared 2909 times since Wed Nov 13, 2013
As a DJ who specializes in spinning retro pop, it's always more fun to play a band's lesser hits than the obvious ones. To see the glint in someone's eyes as you play a band's cult favorite vs. their number one is pure magic between the DJ and the dancer. While there are many one-hit wonders that barely deserve the one hit ( OMC, T'Pau, Natural Selection ), I'd like to share with you a few acts that, with a tiny bit of exploration on your Spotify, reveal a wealth of material far beyond Top 40 radio.
Sinéad O'Connor may be known to the younger generation as a vessel for Prince's "Nothing Compares 2 U," but as anyone who went to college in the late '80s and early '90s will tell you, and judging by her three sold out nights last week at City Winery, Sinéad has been mostly a steady supplier of musical crack ( insinuation intended ), starting with her debut, the strong Lion and Cobra, and right up to her latest How About I Be Me ( with just one oddity, her reggae CD Throw Down Your Arms ). Focus on her first two releases for maximum Sinéad, chock full of hits that should have been.
Talk Talk are mostly forgotten by all but their die-hard fans, who are numerous and rabid. The band was the original Radiohead, starting out with a really poppy debut, a perfectly alt-pop second release containing their only US hit, "It's My Life," then three arty but low-selling follow-ups, a break-up, and the obligatory solo release from the lead singer. After that, Mark Hollis disappeared into thin air only to be seen once in the last decade to receive an award. If you're a fan of Radiohead's peak era, look into the latter three Talk Talk albums, but for a lover of "It's My Life," look into the first two, brimming with synth pop goodies.
Finally, the kings of the "one-hit wonder" a-ha offer so much more than their debut hit "Take On Me." I'm not just talking about the other singles off their debut, Hunting High and Low ( "Train of Thought," "The Sun Always Shines On TV" ) but their entire career over nine progressively artistic albums, peaking with a very Coldplay-like reunion album Minor Earth. At that point a-ha slowly came back down from experimenting and gradually returned to their original synth-based sound on their final, Foot Of The Mountain and last single, the '80s-referential goodbye song, "Butterfly, Butterfly" which, like most of these artists' lesser known offerings, in a perfect world, would have been a number one hit.
DJ Moose celebrates the new Lady Gaga CD with a full night of her music, Nov. 15 at Mary's Attic.
This article shared 2909 times since Wed Nov 13, 2013
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