Monday, May 16, 2016

"Invisible Hands" by Kim Carnes

Song#:  1652
Date:  10/15/1983
Debut:  78
Peak:  40
Weeks:  13
Genre:  Synthpop, Rock

Pop Bits:  Carnes' album Voyeur went down the dark synthpop path that was set by her huge 1981 hit "Bette Davis Eyes," but the results were not good. The title-track single could only get to #29 while the album faltered at #49. It was a major disappointment coming off her platinum #1 LP Mistaken Identity. For her next effort, CafĂ© Racers, Carnes mixed it up a bit with dance-pop, AC ballads, and rock-leaning synthpop. This first single falls into the latter category and once again, it just wasn't hitting the mark. The song just barely made the Top 40 while missing all other charts. Despite not being a major hit, the song did earn Carnes a Grammy nomination for Best Female Rock Vocal Performance.

ReduxReview:  I'd love to chat with Kim Carnes and actually find out if this is the direction she really wanted to go or if the label sort of pushed her that way. It just didn't make sense. They were still trying to sell her as some synthpop diva when the only time it really worked was with "Bette Davis Eyes."Again, it was the wrong move especially when she was writing top-notch songs like "I'll Be Here Where the Heart Is" (see below). I think she should have moved off into the pop/AC arena with an emphasis on blue-eyes soul, which was part of her earlier albums. She may not have scored another massive hit, but I think she could have done better on the charts that she did with this song. However, as with "Voyeur," I'm not sad that she did this song. I've always liked it and thought it could have done a bit better on the chart. It's a quirky tune that had a somewhat creepy MTV video where Carnes looks a tad uncomfortable in a "how the hell did I get into this" kind of way. Well, how did you, Kim?

ReduxRating:  7/10

Trivia:  Double Shot!  1) The b-side to this single, which was also included on the album, was "I'll Be Here Where the Heart Is." Carnes co-wrote this song which ended up on the hit soundtrack to the film Flashdance. The album won a Grammy for Best Original Score with all songwriters, including Carnes, taking home a Grammy. It was her second following Record of the Year for "Bette Davis Eyes."  2) This song was co-written by Martin Page and Brian Fairweather. The two Englishmen first got their start in a UK band called Q-Feel. They had a minor hit in the UK with "Dancing in Heaven (Orbital Be-Bop)," which reached #18 on the UK Dance chart. It did not initially chart in the US. However, a reissue of the song in 1989 would reach #75 on the US Pop chart. Page would go on to write hit songs for other artists including "We Build This City" for Starship in 1985. He would also score his own solo hit in 1994 when the title track to his album In the House of Stone and Light would get to #14 (#1 AC).


No comments:

Post a Comment