INXS slots in at #55 in the 1991 MusiCards set. It's a strange posed shot of the Aussie boys each doing their own thing while gathered together in an empty room. Looks kinda like the guy in white is all, "Hey guys, check out this new riff I came up with." Meanwhile Michael Hutchence is all, "Yeah, sounds good, Tim, but I gotta check out this fascinating camera over here."
Sadly, the design's misplacement of the Super Stars logo essentially spoils what could have been a fine looking trading card. Poor Andrew Farriss on the left there gets the "blockhead" treatment while the lower right corner cries out its vacancy. Such a shame. (But stay tuned.)
INXS also have a separate card in the second series (#314), plus there's a pair in the UK edition too, so the band is penciled in for a return to the blog eventually. We'll delve into their career more in those future posts. For now, I've got a couple personal anecdotes I wanted to cover here.
INXS - "Never Tear Us Apart"
In a random early memory of mine, I'm a pre-teen in the late 80s riding in a car with some family members in Chicago on the way to my great grandmother's funeral. I haven't really matured into listening to "real music" by this point, but at sometime during the trip I overheard a catchy song on the radio or something. I forget the context, but somehow I work part of the lyric like "two worlds collided" into the conversation and my cool older cousin kinda perked up and asked "INXS?" I just nodded and felt like hotshit for kinda impressing her with my vague familiarity with current hit singles. As an only child, she was as close as I had to an older sibling, and she would go on to help nudge me along my path of musical discovery as I entered my teen years.
I still love that song-- Kick really is a great album start to finish-- and even worked up a "reimagined" cover version that I enjoy rocking out from time to time when I practice playing guitar. I recorded a rough version in 2015 that's still collecting dust on the internet in case you want to check it out. It's not very tight, but in my defense it's all me: guitar, singing, keyboard, and even the sloppy drums.
I should also mention that-- unless maybe I'm overlooking something?-- pretty sure INXS is the only act in the entire 1991 MusiCards set that I've personally seen perform live in person. Yep, it was June 21st, 2006 at the Embarcadero Marina Park South in San Diego. On lead vocals was the winner from their Rock Star competition reality show, JD Fortune. I had caught most of those episodes (chiefly thanks to Dave Navarro co-hosting, as I was a diehard Jane's Addiction fan at the time), so it was nice having some "bond" with the guy through getting to know him through the show (and the rest of the guys in the band, for that matter), but the experience was still just a step above watching a cover band, hearing all the INXS classics with somebody besides Michael Hutchence singing.
Here's a custom for the latter era of the band. They kept it going as INXS for a few years before finally calling it quits in 2013.
But yeah, it was a fun night at a pleasant outdoor venue. My friend Chris had stumbled into free tickets-- gotta admit I would've never considered actually spending my own money to go to the show, but for free? Sure! My concert-going heyday was the mid 90s through the 00s, but I usually went to alternative/indie rock shows, so there's not much overlap with the MusiCards checklist. While I dug plenty of larger acts of the day-- huge Tom Petty fan, for example-- I just rarely ponied up the dough for large venue concerts. That's still true today, though I have more discretionary income to play with now. I find it hard to pay $100+ for tickets to see somebody play from the rafters when there are several HD video recordings available to watch free on YouTube, ya know? My buddy Doug recently bought a single ticket to see Paul McCartney in Seattle. He's a huge Beatles fan who had never seen him live, so that was monumental for him to pull off. He was texting me video clips while it was happening and it was a vicarious blast. But I don't know if I have a personal equivalent of that where I would pull the whole "Shut up and take my money!" meme to buy a ticket at any cost. That might make a good question prompt for the comments: Is there any musical artist alive today you'd happily buy a $200+ ticket for the opportunity to see perform live if their tour happened to stop at your largest local sports arena?
Maybe this is on my mind because a tour was recently announced with Jane's Addiction opening for Smashing Pumpkins. The current version of both bands is a far cry from their glory days, but I'm debating it. I've seen Jane's several times, but never the Pumpkins (despite being a big fan). Tickets are like $75 and it's at the Moda Center where the Trailblazers play. It's an easy commute for me-- the train passes it on my way to and from work-- but I've never been in the building. I'm sure it won't come anywhere near selling out, so maybe I'll take a look closer to the mid-November date and see if I can score a cheap ticket or two.
Welp, I've probably rambled enough to fill out the post. I'll have to get around to listing out my favorite INXS songs when we eventually get to their Series 2 card. In the meantime, please let me know in the comments if you've got any thoughts or memories to share regarding INXS. I'm also curious about the aforementioned "expensive ticket" question, and-- if you're looking to kill some time-- maybe count up how many acts you've seen live from the 1991 MusiCards checklist. Might be interesting to find out who among our readers here has caught the most. I'm setting the bar pretty low with 1! (And that one barely counts, considering the replacement singer.)
Oh wait, I just found a second artist in the set that I've "sort of" seen live! Back in August '96, fresh out of high school, Doug and I drove up to Big Bear, California for a music festival in the mountains. We were mainly there to see Porno For Pyros and Love & Rockets (who were both great). Lady Miss Kier also performed a set, and she's featured on a MusiCard with Deee-Lite (#268), who had recently broken up at the time. I don't remember much of her set, as we were still milling around the grounds for most of it, but I recall thinking it was cool to see her-- the far-out lady from the fun "Groove Is in the Heart" song/video-- even if her music that afternoon was a bit too "dance rave" for my taste. So yeah, I'd say that plus seeing INXS with a new singer combines for a solid "1" for my Acts-Pictured-on-a-MusiCard-I've-Seen-Live total, or 2 if we're being really generous about it.
Well, I'll re-set the bar: I've seen 23 of the acts on the Musicards checklist.ReplyDelete
I was never a big INXS fan, but I love their version of "Good Times" (aka "Gonna Have A Good Time") on the Lost Boys soundtrack.
I don't know that there's anyone I'd pay $200 to see right now. I've seen McCartney a bunch of times, and I'm sure there were times I would have paid that kind of money if I had to, but his voice isn't what it used to be and he's not adding much to the setlist that I haven't heard before. If I could pay $200 to hear him do a bunch of solo stuff he's never done live or hasn't done since the Wings days--better still, if he were reuniting with the last version of Wings--then, yeah, shut up and take my money, at least if I'm also pretending we're ignoring COVID concerns. Other than that, it would probably take some big multi-act tribute concert or something like that. Or, you know, someone coming back from the dead.
INXS is one of those bands I never really got into, but always liked the songs I heard on the radio. I was lucky enough to see Smashing Pumpkins in their heyday, and I've seen 6 acts on the 1991 Musicards checklist (which was a lot more than I realized!) The only way I could justify a $200 ticket now would be for a festival concert with multiple acts that I like.ReplyDelete
INXS is very much wrapped up in my discovery of new wave music/college rock music during the mid-1980s. Before INXS were well-known pop stars, they were one of those underground bands (at least from a U.S. perspective) from the early '80s. "The One Thing" off Shabooh Shoobah was the first song of theirs I heard back in '82 or '83. Bought the cassette tape of "Listen Like Thieves" in early '86 and wore it out, still my favorite INXS album.ReplyDelete
Off top of my head, from the '91 set, I know I've seen the Goo Goo Dolls. Saw Paul McCartney 5 years ago. He's coming around to our place again next month, the guy just can't stop touring, even though he's just not that much of a singer anymore.
My concert experiences have never involved me getting a $200 ticket, and that's in Canadian dollars. I don't think I could justify the expense. I've seen a few cross over $100, but since I have a fairly wide range of taste, I can manage to see plenty of shows at not much expense. I think my most expensive ticket is somewhere around $125 CAD (King Crimson).ReplyDelete
As for INXS, I don't have any of their albums, but I always liked the song "Elegantly Wasted". I suppose the rest of the album may not live up to that single.
I wouldn't spend that kind of money. I don't deal well with loud sounds so it would be a waste on me, I'd be miserable. I've seen none of the acts in person.ReplyDelete