Dexys Midnight Runners – Searching For The Young Soul Rebels (1980)
In Canada, the tune Come On Eileen is widely considered a ‘one-hit wonder,’ where bonus marks are awarded to anyone who can recall the group’s name. As an obscure trivia enthusiast, I would be likely to cash in by remembering the name Dexys Midnight Runners.
Were/are they really a one hit wonder? Overseas at least, not so much.
It appears most of us Canucks missed the boat.
At the date of the 1001 albums book publication, Dexys Midnight Runners had released a trio of studio albums. ALL three are included as albums that simply must be heard. How many groups can boast an entire discography that is deemed essential listening?
It’s unclear where this album would be classified: ska? punk? soul? new wave? At times the vocals remind me of some of my favourite singers (Bowie, Robert Smith) and even if they didn’t hit it big in North America, groups like No Doubt were probably aware of their existence.
Though I haven’t explored beyond this debut, Searching for the Young Soul Rebels is surprisingly excellent. Surprising in that I’m still adjusting my lens – for years I’ve seen Dexys (as they’re currently dubbed) in the same memorable-blip-on-the-radar category as A-ha and Soft Cell.
Then again, A-ha and Soft Cell made the 1001 list as well, so one hit wonder may be an inappropriate label for all these groups.
Perhaps Cassandra & Wayne Campbell said it best (at 1:50):
“Labeling people can be dangerous…if you label me, you negate me?” Wisdom of Wayne’s World!