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The Fixx

Reach The Beach (Reviewed by SurlyOne):

The Fixx are the rare UK band that found great American success while barely making a dent in their homeland charts. From their debut 1982 single "Lost Planes" (then known simply as "The Fix" before a jittery record label suggested the extra X to avoid "the drug connotation") to the 1998 CD Elemental The Fixx have created a unique sound combining thoughtful wordplay and brilliant musicianship. Mixing solid drums, brilliant guitar, throbbing bass, unique keyboards and the captivating vocals of Cy Curnin, The Fixx remain one of the world's premiere rock bands.
Their 2nd album Reach The Beach has endured as one of the finest "modern rock" albums of the 1980's. Released in May of 1983, Reach The Beach showed amazing growth from their 1982 debut Shuttered Room. The first single "Saved By Zero" is a haunting song with lyrics that many interpret in different ways, but to me, seem to deal with alienation and lack of support from so-called friends. While that song reached #20 on the Hot 100 and #9 at Album Rock, it was the second single that made the band a household name. "One Thing Leads To Another" ruled the airwaves in late Summer 1983, reaching #4 Pop and #2 Album Rock. Jamie West-Oram's cutting guitar starts the song with what became one of the most recognizable riffs from the 1980's, and the song is now considered an 80's classic. Single #3 was the equally impressive "The Sign Of Fire," issued as two 45's - live versions of the album's first two hits were featured as b-sides.

There's much more to dig into beyond the hits. "Running" chugs along with a rocking sense of urgency..."Privelege" showcases the band's uncanny knack for creating original hooks that slice through your speakers..."Opinions" glides through mountainous highs and earth-shattering lows. However, the real gem of the record is closing number "Outside." The lyric drags you in ("Washing, flowing, taking, all these fears away...") but the music provides the drama, the urgency, the strength. In a decade full of one hit wonders and guilty pleasures, Reach The Beach is a true work of art with a solid beginning, middle and end. Even the artwork by George Underwood still glows stunningly after all these years. This is one record that has truly stood the test of time.

Response to this review by Iluvthe80s): I own this album also. Great album! Some of my favorite songs from the album are: "Saved By Zero", "Running", and "Reach The Beach". After seeing this band live recently, I have a new found respect for them. You can tell by their shows they really appreciate their fans.

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