Saturday, 20 July 2013

Bananarama 'Trick Of The Night'

Chart Peak: 32

Charted at No. 64 on 10th February, had reached No. 32 by 24th February.

Another near-miss Stock Aitken Waterman connection here. The hitmaking trio, who had of course already produced the Nanas' US chart-topping version of 'Venus', were called in to remix this track to appeal to UK buyers. A video was even made for their mix by the journalist Paul Heiney, as part of the forgotten TV series In At The Deep End where presenters were called upon to learn and practice new skills quickly (you can hear part of his voice over in that clip), the sort of thing that would nowadays be called a reality show. I watched that week's episode and it would have been one of the few times I heard the song since even with that publicity it failed to become much of a hit for them. That's presumably why they went further down the SAW route after this. It makes Side 3 a bit of a parade of forgotten numbers.

It's actually Swain and Jolley's original production of 'A Trick Of The Night' (as it's called on the single cover) that features here, which is probably for the best though both sound pretty dated 26 years later. One of the group's more serious songs, it's written as warning to a young man who runs off to the big city and ends up becoming a rentboy - thus the double meaning of the word "trick" (and maybe of the lyric "take it the wrong way" as well), although if this stuff is already happening to him it might be a bit late for warnings? It was hardly explicit enough to prevent airplay but perhaps the downbeat mood was not what people wanted from a band who'd made their name with sillier material (and did, after all, have an extremely silly name). I quite like it now, but I wouldn't claim it's a great lost hit. It's better than many of their bigger hits though.

Also appearing on: Now 3, 7, 10, 11, 12, 14 (with Lananeeneenoonoo), 15
Available on: 30 Years Of Bananarama (The Very Best Of)

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