Released today in 1982: Island Of Lost Souls

Chrysalis CHS2608

Chrysalis CHS2608

After a wait of well over a year, Blondie came up with this: probably their weakest single to date, twee calypso-influenced Island Of Lost Souls was advance notice of the type of form the band would be on for their forthcoming sixth album, The Hunter. Significantly, the single peaked at #11: a sizeable hit, but not the Top 10 success they would normally have expected, especially given this was the lead single from an album. In the States, their fall from popularity was even starker: their previous two singles had topped the Hot 100 and this one stalled at #37. In between, Debbie Harry had released her solo debut Backfired, a minor hit here and over there taken from her album Koo Koo which is better remembered for its stunning cover than its contribution to music.

The Hunter received poor write-ups from the British music press from reviewers who believed the band was past its prime. If the track title For Your Eyes Only sounds familiar, that’s because it was recorded for use as the theme of the previous year’s Bond movie, but the producers rejected it. (Sheena Easton got the gig instead.) As if that wasn’t enough of a disappointment, The Hunter remains the only Blondie album not to have received a certified sales award from the BPI – even 1976’s debut album Blondie, which managed only a single week on the album chart, sold steadily enough to earn a gold disc by the end of 1980. (All the rest went platinum.)

Second and final single from the album, War Child, barely scraped inside the Top 40; plans to tour were cancelled due to poor ticket sales; Chris Stein was diagnosed with a serious illness; the band were facing mounting debts owing to their commercial decline. So when Blondie announced their split in November, it wasn’t much of a surprise. The rest of the decade offered up various reissues and compilations to cash in on their impressive back catalogue.

NEW SINGLES on sale from Apr. 30
The ASSOCIATES Club Country (Associates ASC2)
BLONDIE Island Of Lost Souls (Chrysalis CHS2608)
CULTURE CLUB White Boy (Virgin VS496)
The FUN BOY THREE The Telephone Always Rings (Chrysalis CHS2609)


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