Rebellious Jukebox: INXS
It’s kind of strange but it really does seem almost like a rebellious act to like INXS, and when I talk of that name I am of course talking of the Michael Hutchene led band and not the soulless entity that JD Fortune has turned them into. I say almost because it wouldn’t really fly as a concept. But damn, were they not a fuck of a lot better than anyone gives them credit for? I think they produced some really interesting music in their lifespan, and not just interesting in the way some of those bands that you can barely listen to are interesting. Sure, it’s not as if they pushed sonic boundaries like Radiohead or anything but they did escape, at least as far as I’m concerned, that limiting idea of what a rock band is. They weren’t just stadium rock and they weren’t, as I have heard them called, a pub rock band. Welcome To Wherever You Are was a departure from their established sound in a lot of ways (they still had some traditional INXS sounding songs) but it was Full Moon, Dirty Hearts where I think they really stretched out and got comfortable with the idea of experimenting and some of that came from the format they released it in — a series of short films being made to accompany the songs. I don’t think the original line up went out on a particularly high note with Elegantly Wasted but given the strength of the previous two albums and their back catalogue as a whole I think it is very unfair that they should be overshadowed by the questionable way in which their lead singer exited this mortal coil. It was a sad way to go but at least it wasn’t one more earnest suicide, rather an accident. That word tragic is over-used but I think here it comes in to play when you add Paula Yates’ demise – that an accident should be followed by a suicide. My hope for the band is that JD Fortune doesn’t dismantle what reputation they do have with his karaoke crooning and awful lyrics. They should occupy a bigger place in the music scheme of things than they do but that could all go by the way if Fortune doesn’t stumble across some soul.