20 August 2021

Week commencing 20 August 1990

Before diving into this week's chart recap from 1990, in case you missed it, earlier this week I wrote a special post on singles that peaked at number 101 between 1992 and 1994; a sequel to a post I wrote last year.
I have also updated a 1989 weekly chart post, now containing the music video for a song by Clive Young, where no audio was previously available for this track.  A post from May this year has also been updated, now with the music video for the Partners Rime Syndicate track.

Now, onto this week in 1990...  This week, there are only two top 150 debuts, continuing the August 1990 drought of new entries peaking between number 101 and 150.  Let's take a look.

Paul Kelly didn't exactly ignite the charts with this release.
Top 150 debuts: 

Number 122 "Pouring Petrol on a Burning Man" by Paul Kelly and The Messengers
Peak: number 109
Peak date: 27 August 1990
Weeks in top 150: 8 weeks
Weeks on chart: 8 weeks

Paul Kelly and The Messengers bubbled under previously in October 1989 with the second of three singles from their So Much Water So Close to Home (number 10, August 1989) album.

"Pouring Petrol on a Burning Man" was an in-between-albums single that later appeared on Paul Kelly and The Messengers' Hidden Things (number 29, April 1992) compilation; a collection of tracks that mostly did not appear on any previous studio album.  The song also later appeared on Paul's Greatest Hits: Songs from the South (number 2, June 1997) and Greatest Hits: Songs from the South Volumes 1 & 2 (number 22, November 2008).

Despite not breaking through into the top 100 nationally, "Pouring Petrol on a Burning Man" dented the top 100 on four of the five ARIA state charts, only missing out in Queensland.  The single performed strongest in Victoria/Tasmania, reaching number 67.

Paul Kelly and The Messengers will next join us in March 1991.

Number 146 "Floatation" by The Grid
Peak: number 102
Peak date: 10 September 1990
Weeks in top 150: 11 weeks
Weeks on chart: 12 weeks
The Grid are English duo David Ball and Richard Norris.  David was previously in Soft Cell, who scored a number 1 single in Australia with their version of "Tainted Love" in February 1982.  Soft Cell only landed one other top 100 single in Australia, "Torch" (number 68, September 1982).  Another Soft Cell single, "Bedsitter", made the Kent Music Report's Hit Predictions list, which pre-dated the singles receiving significant reports beyond the top 100 list, in March 1982.

"Floatation" (sic) was The Grid's first release in Australia, and was lifted from their debut album Electric Head (released in Australia in October 1990, did not chart).  "Floatation" peaked at number 60 in the UK in July 1990.

"Floatation" is a rather sedate and laid-back affair compared to The Grid's only real hit in Australia, "Swamp Thing" (number 3, September 1994), which borders on novelty, pairing a banjo with techno beats.  I didn't care for "Swamp Thing" at the time, but it later grew on me.  "Floatation" is much more my style, so of course it flopped.  That being said, spending three months on the chart is not a bad run for a single peaking at only number 102.

On the state charts, "Floatation" performed strongest in South Australia/Northern Territory, where it reached number 65.  Interestingly, "Floatation" made the top 100 on four of the five ARIA state charts - Queensland being the only exception - but could not break into the top 100 nationally.

We shall next see The Grid in 1993.  Before then, they released three singles in Australia that failed to chart: "A Beat Called Love" (October 1990), "Boom" (October 1991), and "Figure of Eight" (September 1992).

Next week (27 August): Another two new top 150 debuts plus three bubbling WAY down under entries.

< Previous week: 13 August 1990                                      Next week: 27 August 1990 >

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