Thursday, December 31, 2020

"Rain in the Summertime" by The Alarm

Song#:  3363
Date:  12/19/1987
Debut:  96
Peak:  71
Weeks:  8
Genre:  Rock

Pop Bits:  This Welsh band reached the US Pop chart with their 1985 single "Strength." It was taken from their second album of the same name and reached #61 Pop/#12 Rock. With more folks aware of the band in the US, they tried to keep up the momentum with their third effort, Eye of the Hurricane. This first single was released and it became their first to crack the Rock Top 10 at #6. On the Pop chart it wasn't able to break through and could only manage a couple of months near the bottom of the chart. The album would end up peaking at #77, which wasn't as good as their previous LP (#39).

ReduxReview:  The Alarm was often compared to U2, a band with which they had opened for on earlier 80s tours. They wore the U2 influences on their sleeves while trying to establish their own voice and it was starting to work out well with their LP Strength starting to break them through in a bigger way. Eye of the Hurricane probably should have taken them further into their own individuality, but it seems they just couldn't shake the ghost of U2 and didn't do much to advance their sound. This first single certainly had a U2 feel and lead singer Mike Peters even seemed to be channeling Bono. Yet despite the continued U2 veil of influence, the band did have a knack for penning some good tunes and this was one of them.  I love the joyous feeling of the chorus mixed with the near-military marching arrangement. It sounds defiant and jubilant, which was kind of different for the band who were more known for their darker, more political tunes. What comes to mind in the chorus is the moment in The Shawshank Redemption where Tim Robbins after having escaped the prison thankfully falls to his knees and raises his arms to the sky in the pouring rain while the camera looks down on him. That one moment sums up the chorus of the song.

ReduxRating:  7/10

Trivia:  The follow-up single selected from the album was "Rescue Me." While it didn't make the Pop chart, it did reach #35 at Rock. It was probably thought that the song might have done better due to it being included on a soundtrack album from a popular US TV show. The track was used in the hit Fox drama 21 Jump Street. The show was about a team of undercover cops who looked young enough to meld in with high school and college students. The program debuted in April of 1987 and ran for five seasons. It was among the first major successes put out by the fledgling Fox network. The show's popularity with a younger demographic helped it become the first Fox program to beat one of the Big 3 network's (CBS, ABC, and NBC) programs in its time slot. 21 Jump Street was also famous for being the launching pad for three-time Oscar nominated actor Johnny Depp, who stayed with the show for four seasons. In 2012, the show was adapted into a buddy comedy film that starred Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum. Reviews for the flick were mostly positive and it became a box office hit.


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