Tuesday, May 21, 2019

"Victory Line" by Limited Warranty

Song#:  2775
Date:  06/28/1986
Debut:  93
Peak:  79
Weeks:  8
Genre:  Pop, Rock

Pop Bits:  This Minneapolis band started to form in 1979. Fleshed out to a five-man group, they began to work the club scene developing their performing and songwriting skills. They ended up auditioning for the hit TV talent show Star Search and landed a spot in the show's third season competing in the Vocal Group category. They made it to the finals in 1985 and ended up winning the $100,000 prize. The money helped them record an indie single of a song they wrote titled "This Is Serious." It got some airplay in the Midwest and that plus their Star Search win got them signed to ATCO Records. The label sent them to England to record their self-titled debut album with producer/engineer Brian Tench and this first single got issued out. While winning Star Search certainly helped get them a record deal, it didn't necessarily translate to record sales. The single could only manage a couple of months at the bottom of the Pop chart while the album slipped away to little notice.

ReduxReview:  These guys had a bit of Euro new wave to their sound. There's shades of Duran Duran, Tears for Fears, Go West, and even a little a-ha in the mix. It kind of makes sense since their single "This Is Serious" was produced by former Psychedelic Furs drummer Vince Ely and a chunk of their debut album was recorded in England. It's too bad this song didn't do better. It's got a good chorus and nice production. I also like Dale Goulett's voice. It doesn't necessarily scream Top 10, but it was a solid effort from a newbie band. They had a knack at writing hooky tunes too. The album has several nice cuts. These guys had the goods. It's just too bad it didn't fully gel for them.

ReduxRating:  8/10

Trivia:  Double Shot!  1) Although their debut album didn't do well, ATCO wanted to give it another shot and the band prepared to record a second LP. However, the label seemed to lose interest before anything was recorded and the band was dropped. They were able to sign a deal with EMI America, which soon became EMI Manhattan after a merger. New management entered the picture and after hearing a few demos the band did for a new album, the label decided to not move forward and dumped the band. After that, the band just slowly dissolved with members going on to other projects and careers.  2) The group that Limited Warranty beat at the Star Search finals was a female vocal trio called Jailbait. The trio consisted of sisters Yassmin and Karmine Alers and Kim Harlan. They did well on the show, but after their loss the rumor mill started spinning and some opined that the shows producers weren't fond of the trio's name and somehow pushed to give the tamer-named Limited Warranty the win. While it made for a good rumor, it just didn't make sense because when the trio was selected for the show, the producers could have easily told them to change their name if they wanted to be on the show. That obviously didn't happen, so any shenanigans seem unlikely. Jailbait did record a single for Atlantic called "Be the One," but is seems nothing came from it. Yassmin Alers would later find work as an actor and would appear in Broadway shows. Karmine Alers also found some acting work that included Broadway and touring shows. Karmine would try for a music career again as a member of another vocal trio called 3rd Party. They recorded a debut album in 1997 titled Alive. It spawned two chart entries - "Can U Feel It" (#43 Pop/#42 Dance) and a remake of Gary Wright's "Love Is Alive" (#61 Pop/#19 Dance). The lead singer of the trio was Maria Christensen, a songwriter who had released a solo album in 1993 to little notice. She co-wrote four songs for the album including the track "Waiting for Tonight." That song got picked up by Jennifer Lopez in 1999. It was on her debut LP On the 6 and was the album's second single. It reached #8 Pop/#1 Dance.


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