Hey there! I can’t believe it’s been two months since I’ve actually written anything. If not for a sudden desire to revisit some musical roots, it might have been longer. Since the picture removes all doubt about those roots, let’s borrow from The Twitterverse and dive into a Throwback Thursday by checking out The Fixx’s Ink.
In a happy coincidence, The Fixx released Ink. on February 19, 1991. Yes, 30 years ago tomorrow (or today, or 5 years ago and change depending on when you’re reading this) this album hit the shelves. This album sounds as good today as it did then. What galls me is that this album only reached 111 on the Billboard top 200. Seriously? How is it possible this album couldn’t crack the top 100? Let’s take a look back at which artists and albums ranked higher shall we?
#96 Gerardo – Mo’Ritmo
#95 Candy Dulfer – Saxuality
#81 New Kids on the Block – No More Games/Remix album
#69 Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves Soundtrack
#61 Yanni – Reflections of Passion
#53 Michael Bolton – Soul Provider
#32 New Jack City Soundtrack
#29 Nelson – After the Rain
#28 The Simpsons Sing the Blues
#14 Michael Bolton – Time, Love and Tenderness
Here’s the rest of Billboard’s Top 100 – 1991.
No disrespect to the above, but I can’t believe that Michael Bolton has two albums ranked ahead of The Fixx. To be fair, I take umbrage with where quite a few albums from that year are ranked (Sting’s Soul Cages is only at #46). Considering the list is a mix of Country, Hip-Hop, Hard Rock, Alternative, Soft Rock, and Soundtracks, maybe that answers why the album didn’t climb as high as it should’ve. They just didn’t fit into any of those genres. Regardless, savvy music lovers know that good music transcends genre or time.
The primary theme on Ink. is avarice. I like to think the band was being clever in stylizing the title, preferring Ink. over a more obvious Inc. The theme is, of course, the most obvious on the track How Much Is Enough? If the song title rings a bell, it’s because that was the only one to chart from the album. I recall listening to Bob Coburn interview the band on the nationally syndicated show, Rockline. Lead singer, Cy Curnin recounted the song’s inspiration came from listening to a friend complaining about where they were in life saying, “Good enough’s not good enough.” Tracks like All Is Fair, No One Has to Cry, Shut It Out, Climb the Hill, and even All the Best Things delve into greed’s realm.
Ready to revisit this little known gem? Check out Ink.
Just for kicks, I dug through a box buried at the bottom of a stack in my garage to share these with you. These are from the night where Cy Curnin joined Eddie Money, Joan Jett, Tara Kemp, and many others at RIBCO where I bartended.