Song of the Day, June 29: Hero Takes A Fall by the Bangles
June 29, 2012 Leave a comment
Today’s song is Hero Takes A Fall by the Bangles. In 1984, these four women seemed poised for greatness. Vicki Peterson met Susanna Hoffs and they instantly connected over their shared enthusiasm for classic pop. Merging their talents with Vicki’s sister, Debbi, they began working as a band. After a couple of years and a couple of bass players, they landed Michael Steele (formerly of the Runaways) and got going in earnest. They had an impressive understanding of and respect for musical history, serious chops as a band, great songwriters, and a lot of energy. Their 1984 debut album, All Over the Place, is an amazing set of tracks from start to finish. It sold reasonably well, and Hero Takes A Fall got decent college airplay.
Then the Bangles had a “be careful what you wish for” experience. Their second album featured two major hits: Manic Monday, penned by Prince, and Walk Like An Egyptian, the biggest single of 1986. Unfortunately, the sound was very slick, removing the energy and crunch that were so much of the first album’s charm. Their label and the press also added some Supremes-like tension, focusing on Hoffs as the singer even though all four were talented contributors. The third album was an unfocused mess and the band broke up. They’d sold millions of records, but drifted far from the promising sound that launched them. After many years of solo efforts and consistently interesting side projects, the original three reunited. They’ve released som good music, hearkening back to their early promise.
Hero Takes A Fall is a brilliant pop gem. It has a killer hook, clever lyrics, lovely harmonies, and just enough edge to make the lyrics bite like they should.
The hero is exposed when
His crimes are brought to the light of day
Won’t be feelin’ sorry, sorry, sorry
On the judgement day.
It wasn’t me who said
There’ll be a price to pay
And I won’t feel bad at all
When the hero takes a fall
It kicks off All Over the Place with just the right energy, sending the listener into 40 minutes of powerful pop joy delivered by a strong band. Enjoy this wonderful song today.