Thursday, November 8, 2018

"What You Need" by INXS

Top 10 Alert!
Song#:  2582
Date:  01/18/1986
Debut:  96
Peak:  5
Weeks:  20
Genre:  Rock

Pop Bits:  Australia's INXS slowly grew their worldwide audience over the course of four albums. Their last album, The Swing, hit #1 in their home country, so it became critical that their fifth album equal or better that feat. They were also hoping to grow their international fan base. In the US and Europe, their new album Listen Like Thieves was introduced by the first single "This Time." It failed to make an impact reaching #81 in the US and #79 in the UK. On the verge of losing the audience they spent the past few years gaining, the band then issued out this next single which had already been a #2 hit in Australia. Its low debut on the Pop chart didn't bode well, but as weeks passed, the song began to break and soon it would become the band's first US Top 10 hit. It would also reach #3 at Rock. The single boosted sales of the album, which ended up peaking at #11. Over time it would end up selling over two million copies. Now that they had broken through in a much bigger way, the pressure would be on to deliver something even better.

ReduxReview:  This song just totally smacked up the radio when it started to get airplay. That blues-rock groove and guitar licks sounded so cool, the drums were crisp and snappy, and the sax was da bomb, especially on the build ups to the second verse and final outro. The tune was brilliantly arranged and produced. It sounded so damn good when cranked to eleven. This song was the spark that really lit a fire under the band. Once they got a taste for hit-dom, they weren't gonna look back.

ReduxRating:  9/10

Trivia:  After the album was essentially recorded, producer Chris Thomas wasn't convinced that there was a surefire hit among the tracks and requested that the band try to come up with one. With very little time available to write a brand new song from scratch, band members Andrew Fariss and Michael Hutchence went through some of the demo/idea tapes they recorded while working on the album and came across a groovy track that was titled "Funk Song No. 13." Thomas loved it and though it could be the basis for something great. Fariss and Hutchence got to work on it and a day later had "What You Need." They quickly got it recorded and added to the album. That last ditch effort resulted in their first US Top 10. Thirteen was certainly lucky for them!


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