The Fixx – Reach the Beach

ARTIST: The Fixx                                      220px-The_Fixx_-_Reach_the_Beach

TITLE: Reach the Beach

YEAR RELEASED: 1983

CHART ACTION: #8 US, #91 UK

SINGLES: Saved By Zero (#20 US), One Thing Leads to Another (#4 US, #86 UK), The Sign of Fire (#32 US)

OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: Probably not. I doubt many people listened to the second side.

LINEUP: Cy Curnin, Rupert Greenall, Jamie West-Oram, Adam Woods. Alfie Agius played bass on three songs (two of them hits and he wrote the bass line for One Thing Leads to Another). Dan Brown joined to play bass on one track.

WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: The Fixx, thanks to MTV and catchy new wave hooks, gain a US foothold as they were being ignored in the UK.

SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: Barely getting any notice in their native land, the Fixx got a lot of traction in the US thanks to very MTV friendly (yet overly- arty and pretentious) videos for “Saved By Zero” and “One Thing Leads to Another”.

The hooks and videos hid a secret of the Fixx – they had designs on being progressive art rockers but also wanted to make hit records. The deep tracks here show more of this dichotomy. Cy Curnin’s lyrics are philosophical fiddle-faddle most of the time, and the music lets Rupert Greenall go nuts with his keyboards.

But the hits were insidious, and there’s enough glimmers in the deep tracks to at least keep this around as a whole album.

NOTES & MINUTIAE: Alfie Agius recorded three tracks with the band, then left in a personality dispute. They did without a bassist until the last track they recorded, when they definitely needed one.

IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: Yes, two unneccessary remixes, and B-side, and a pretty decent song from a soundtrack (“Deeper and Deeper”)

GRADE: B-: Philosophy students should avoid the lyrics (ok, everyone should, really) but they do have a few decent moments after the hits. A few.

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