College Countdown: 90FM’s Top 90 of 1989, 32 and 31


32. Elvis Costello, Spike

By the time Elvis Costello released he album Spike in the spring of 1989, his reputation and personality were already well-established within the music industry. Certainly, he had a vast array of smart, literate songs that made it clear that he was a fairly cynical fellow. So it certainly shouldn’t have been a surprise when Costello leveled some withering complaints about the charitable endeavors of the rock ‘n’ roll community that reached new heights during the nineteen-eighties. As he put it, “The arrogance of pop music is that you can do everything in one gesture, like Live Aid or the Mandela ‘Freedomfest’ or the Amnesty Tour. What happens is the bandwagon leaves town and the problem remains. That’s the sad thing. Live Aid saved some people one year for them to starve the next. I’m not saying we shouldn’t do the things, ’cause they help put the information out, but we shouldn’t kid ourselves.” Maybe his dour outlook was tempered somewhat by enjoying his greatest U.S. chart success with the song “Veronica,” which managed to break into the top 20. Probably not, though. After all, the extended name of the record is Spike the Beloved Entertainer which Costello explained is not a persona, but is instead an instruction. That’s the handiwork of a guy who’s not likely to mellow.


31. Animal Logic, Animal Logic

Stewart Copeland kept himself busy in the years after The Police called it quits, releasing solo records and providing music for different movie soundtracks. Still, when it came time to actually assemble a new band to work with, the pressure had to be on. He went a fairly idiosyncratic route, recruiting accomplished jazz bassist Stanley Clarke. Then he sought out a lead singer for the group, settling on Deborah Holland largely on the basis of a two-song demo that found its way into his tape player. The trio initially dubbed themselves Rush Hour, and even toured a little under that name. The finally settled on the name Animal Logic and proceeded to record a self-titled debut of arty songs that were both experimental and notably slick. The album didn’t become the sort of sensation that the label was undoubtedly hoping for, but it developed just enough of a following, especially at a certain central Wisconsin station, to convince at least a few people that there might be life after The Police.

90 and 89
88 and 87
86 and 85
84 and 83
82 and 81
80 and 79
78 and 77
76 and 75
74 and 73
72 and 71
70 and 69
68 and 67
66 and 65
64 and 63
62 and 61
60 and 59
58 and 57
56 and 55
54 and 53
52 and 51
50 and 49
48 and 47
46 and 45
44 and 43
42 and 41
40 and 39
38 and 37
36 and 35
34 and 33

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