Friday, November 20, 2020

"Kick the Wall" by Jimmy Davis & Junction

Song#:  3324
Date:  11/07/1987
Debut:  79
Peak:  67
Weeks:  6
Genre:  Rock

Pop Bits:  This Memphis-based band headed up by singer/songwriter/guitarist Jimmy Davis gained a good reputation and a large enough fan base to attracted MCA Records. The band signed on with MCA as the first act to be on their small offshoot QMI label (headed up by former MTV head Bob Pittman) and recorded their debut album Kick the Wall. This title track single would get issued out and it got a little bit of attention thanks to some exposure on MTV. The song was able to reach #32 at Rock while spending a few weeks on the Pop chart. The album sold a few minor copies, but the results seemed to be good enough for the band to plan for a second album. Unfortunately, QMI folded and it left Davis and the band without a label or ability to record a new LP. The prospects of starting over didn't sit well with the band and the members ended up going their own ways.

ReduxReview:  I'm not sure what I was expecting, but this song wasn't it. From what I read, it seemed the band was known for more of a Southern rock sound. I imagined something akin to earlier 80s 38 Special or even Georgia Satellites, but what came out of my speakers was closer to Jackson Browne or Eddie Money. Then there was the long, quiet beginning (which weirdly had a "Dirty Diana" sound/feel) before the rock finally kicked in. It was more heartland than southern. It was well done, but I don't think it was the most pop friendly single. The tune was appropriate for rock radio, yet it really didn't click there either. Davis had a good voice and the band was prime, as was the production. They just needed a more radio friendly track to push them further.

ReduxRating:  6/10

Trivia:  Double Shot!  1) On the heels of the Kick the Wall album, the band did get to record one more track. They co-wrote and recorded "My Way or the Highway" for the soundtrack to the 1988 horror flick A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master. That sequel would get mixed reviews, but did well at the box office.  2) After the band folded, Davis concentrated on songwriting and performing with other artists. A few of his songs got picked up by major artists. He co-wrote "Blame It on Love," a track on the 1992 Restless Heart album Big Iron Horses. Another co-write, "Keeping My Distance," ended up on Martina McBride's triple-platinum 1997 album Evolution.


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