Sunday, January 19, 2020

"Ship of Fools (Save Me from Tomorrow)" by World Party

Song#:  3017
Date:  02/14/1987
Debut:  96
Peak:  27
Weeks:  15
Genre:  Alternative Rock

Pop Bits:  World Party wasn't really a band since it mainly consisted of just one member, Wales-born musician Karl Wallinger. Wallinger was a keyboardist who was in and out of several bands before being asked to join up with the Scottish folk-rock outfit The Waterboys. He stayed with them for a couple of albums including their UK breakthrough, 1985's This Is the Sea, which included the #26 UK hit "The Whole of the Moon." Feeling creatively restricted by being in a band that he didn't help create, Wallinger decided to leave The Waterboys and strike out on his own. He inked a deal with the same label The Waterboys were on, Chrysalis, and began recording songs at his home studio. With the exception of a few guest musicians, Wallinger played all the instruments himself and wrote all the songs (save for one co-write and a Bob Dylan cover). The finished product was titled Private Revolution and the title track was initially released as a first single in the UK in 1986. It didn't get anywhere, but this second single got some attention and it nearly cracked the UK Top 40 (#42). The song was also promoted in the US and it ended up getting to #5 on the Rock chart. That led to the tune crossing over to the Pop chart where it broke into the Top 30. The single helped the album get to #39. A follow-up album, 1990's Goodbye Jumbo would do very well with critics, but none of its singles would make the Pop chart (two would be minor entries at Rock). A third disc, 1993's Bang!, would be his biggest hit in the UK getting to #2, but it failed to make an impression in the US. Wallinger would continue to perform and record as World Party over the years, but this song would remain his only one to crack the US Pop chart.

ReduxReview:  This is one I haven't heard in a long time. It starts off with a cool blues-rock piano riff and then moves into a more straight-ahead, memorable chorus complete with "woo-hoo-hoo's." The production is meaty and Wallinger's voice fits is all very well. It was a terrific alt-rock track that had enough commercial appeal to send it into the Pop Top 30.

ReduxRating:  7/10

Trivia:  Double Shot!  1) A couple of songs on Private Revolution would feature a soon-to-be famous singer/songwriter. The title track and "Hawaiian Island World" would include vocals by an unknown Irish artist by the name of SinĂ©ad O'Connor. O'Connor and Wallinger were on the same label and O'Connor was also beginning to prep her debut album, The Lion and the Cobra,, on which Wallinger would lend a hand. O'Connor would also do some background vocal work on Goodbye Jumbo before bursting into stardom with her 1990 album I Do Not Want What I Haven't Got.  2) For World Party's 1997 album Egyptology, Wallinger wrote and recorded the song "She's the One." It wasn't issued out as a single, but it ended up getting recorded by UK star Robbie Williams for his second album, 1998's I've Been Expecting You. It was pushed out as the LP's fourth single and it would be Williams' second UK #1.


1 comment:

  1. 7/10 for me, I actually hear this song playing on the Satellite Feed at my job (which is based off of the Kroger chain) and it's a good song, I thought this song sounded a bit way ahead of its time for 1987 to be honest.