June 30, 2009

I ain't gonna be your fool no more

Today is the second day of genuine, approved Canadian Content on the Crusty Curmudgeon. New Wave band Platinum Blonde was often compared to Duran Duran for their image and the stylish look of their videos. It probably didn't hurt to have a lead singer who was a British expatriate and has a similar vocal style to Simon le Bon.

Their earliest hits, such as "Standing in the Dark" and "It Doesn't Really Matter" were more political (though it didn't hinder the latter from being used in Labatt's beer ads) but by their second album, Alien Shores, they'd more or less switched over to standard pop topics.

Alien Shores was Platinum Blonde's most successful album, certified quintuple platinum. "Platinum" in Canada means 80,000 units sold, which doesn't sound like much - but when you consider that a) Canada has a tenth the population of the U.S.; b) thus the sales threshold is roughly proportional to the RIAA's platinum certification of 1 million units; and c) Platinum Blonde was virtually unknown outside of Canada, 400,000 sales is quite respectable indeed. (I'm sure most American rock performers only daydream of selling 5 million albums.) Alien Shores contains Platinum Blonde's one American hit, "Somebody Somewhere," but for today I've chosen to highlight the lead single, "Crying Over You":


The guitar solo, incidentally, was performed by the redoubtable Alex Lifeson, of Rush, which is the closest they will come to putting in an appearance this week, at least for this round of CanCon.