This month for my Back to the 80s challenge, I’m featuring another Aussie band. INXS came to my attention back in the summer of 1980/1, after the release of their single ‘Just Keep Walking’. Listening to this song would forever remind me of Christmas holidays down the south coast and hot summer days upon the beach. The song became their first Australian Top 40 single.
INXS were formed in Sydney in 1977, and were originally named The Farris Brothers. They began to regularly support local pub bands such as Midnight Oil and in 1980, released their first, self-titled album. By 1984, they had released three more albums, which began to see them receive international airplay and success, including Canada and the U.S. ‘Original Sin’ from their album The Swing, became their first No.1 single.
In 1985, they performed for the Oz for Africa concert, as part of Live Aid and later that year released their album Listen Like Thieves. Their album Kick was released in 1987, which made them popular worldwide, reaching No.1 in Australia, No.3 in the U.S and No.9 in the U.K. After the success of this album, they went on to release four more. By now they had reached international success, but sadly, on 22 November, 1997, lead singer Michael Hutchence was found dead in his hotel room in Sydney. A state funeral was given and televised. Months later, the State Coroner ruled his death to be that of suicide. Despite this verdict, there is continued speculation over his death.
INXS would continue to perform over the coming years with various lead singers and in 2012, announced they would no longer be touring. Throughout their career, INXS won seven ARIA music awards and in 2001, was inducted into the ARIA Hall of Fame.
I was fortunate to see them live in Sydney during their Kick concert at the height of their career. Down near the front of the stage, I couldn’t help but notice that Michael Hutchence definitely had a kind of presence about him (sounds corny, I know, but it’s true). His untimely death was a great loss to the Australian music industry and the world. May he rest in peace.
Other bands formed or who had hits in the 1980s starting with the letter I include:- Icehouse, Ian Durry and the Blockheads, I’m Talking.
Is there a song or particular type of music that reminds you of summer? What other bands of the 1980s that begin with the letter I can you think of?