For me ‘Street Fighting Years‘ was the defining album by Simple Minds and the supporting tour was their best ever in my opinion. I managed to see them perform over 30 times on that particular tour which started during May 1989 in Italy. It was great to be with the band when listening to the Scottish Cup Final on the radio which Jim Kerr’s beloved Celtic won. I think the open air Modena show may not have been as good if they had actually lost earlier in the day. Also a milestone was reached for me as the second night in Milan was my 100th time seeing them live. The support was The Silencers whom I gave a helping hand in running their Information Service. To top it all I even won a shop competition for the best album display, resulting in a free trip to Paris where I saw them a few nights in the French capital. The tour of course concluded on a real high in Verona, which was then released as a video.
Yes the album was quite political with tracks like ‘Belfast Child‘, ‘Mandela Day‘ and a cover of ‘Biko‘ but it had some strong songs within it. So much so that the band didn’t tour North America because of it. This record also heralded an end of an era with both the original keyboard player Michael MacNeil and manager Bruce Findlay leaving the band within the next twelve months. The ballad ‘Let It All Come Down‘ even now it still sends shivers down me, a song which was written by John Giblin, one my choices for my funeral maybe? How many of you remember that Lou Reed sang on ‘This Is Your Land‘. The crown in jewel has to be the title track which gradually stirs itself into a monumental piece of music. The album entered at number one in the UK with both new albums from Jason Donovan and The Cure lagging way behind in second and third spots in the chart. Last but not least the production from Stephen Lipson and Trevor Horn brought out the best in their sound.