Friday, August 17, 2012

Mike + the Mechanics - "Taken In"

(Not Available on iTunes)

(Debuted June 28, 1986, Peaked #32, 15 Weeks on the Chart)

During the summer of 1986, the members of Genesis -- past and present -- were all on the Top 40 at the same time. The group was there, former lead singer Peter Gabriel was enjoying success as a solo artist, former guitarist Steve Hackett was on the survey as a member of GTR, and current member Mike Rutherford charted with his "other" group Mike + the Mechanics. It was the first time in a decade that four acts from the same band charted separately (The solo Beatles had each charted in 1975).

The group was a diversion for Rutherford when he wasn't busy with Genesis, somewhat like Steely Dan in that he and Christopher Neil were the chief songwriters and then assembled the songs in the studio. In fact, with "Taken In," the instrumental backing tracks were already completed before singer Paul Young (the former Sad Cafe member, not the English soloist who charted with "Everytime You Go Away") was hired. Also the bassist in the video below was Ashley Mulford, who was part of the group on tour but didn't actually contribute to the music on the Mike + the Mechanics LP.

"Taken In" was the third single from the group and the lowest-charting song yet from them. The #32 peak surprises me, since the song was in heavy rotation at the station I was listening to at the time. It's a rather simple ballad, though Young gives it a great sense of emotion as he recounts the words of a man who knows he's being "taken for a ride" by his woman. And he realizes that he's still going to fall for her charms. As he says, "there's one born every minute, and you're looking at him." Indeed.

1 comment:

  1. This was one of my favorite records from the mid-'80s, and I too was surprised at the time that it didn't go higher on the chart. I liked it even more than "All I Need is a Miracle." There's something about the brooding nature of it that really works for me.