Thursday, 16 October 2014

Status Quo 'Burning Bridges (On And Off And On Again)'

Chart Peak: 5
Reckoned to be about their 37th Top 40 single in Britain, 'Burning Bridges' turned out to be one their biggest hits in recent years - it reached No. 5 in December 1988.
After two tracks of reinvented rock music, we can turn to one act you can trust not to modernise their sound. At least, I'm sure it seemed that way at the time but the odd thing is that when you listen back to this track now it does actually seem very 1980s. More so than most of their other Now appearances, in fact, and certainly more than 'The Wanderer' four years earlier, though it's still more recogniseably Quo than 'In The Army Now'. Perhaps it's a sign that in those days an act like Status Quo could still hope to have mainstream success by applying a vaguely modern production to their typical songwriting, whereas nowadays they have to work more on a nostalgic basis. Either way, though, it's not a song I remember hearing at the time (or hearing much since, come to that) and the effect is of something written to order, going through the motions as the subtitle suggests.

The most notable thing about this song is that they later recycled it as 'Come On You Reds' by Manchester United, the only single by a football club (ie other than England) ever to top the UK charts, and a single that accounts for a majority of Quo's time at Number One as songwriters.

Also appearing on: Now 4, 8, 18, 33 (with the Beach Boys), 53
Available on: The Essential Status Quo

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