2 June 2021

Kissing The Pink - Stand Up/ Certain Things Are Likely


One-hit wonders on an extremely convincing comeback trip

Label: WEA
Year of Release: 1988

In the weird, bleak post-Christmas weeks, record companies generally try to slip out records which might fall between the cracks at other times of the year. It's the perfect time to launch new releases by cult bands, long-standing artists with loyal but modest fanbases, new hopes and groups who are down on their luck.

Kissing The Pink were definitely firmly in the latter category by 1989 when this single made minor in-roads into the winter Radio One playlist. Their solitary hit "The Last Film" had charted in 1983 and their follow-ups had all fallen unnoticed outside the Top 75, and they were becoming widely regarded as one-hit wonders. This should have left them feeling hopeless, but in fact the changing musical environment in the late eighties apparently seemed to boost their confidence - in interviews and press releases from the period, they said the current music scene made them feel "much more at home". They set about work recording with PWL supremo Phil Harding and came back with some very confident sounding singles, of which "Stand Up" was the last under their contract with Magnet, and arguably the toughest.

Unbelievably, this wasn't a hit even though it couldn't sound more "late eighties smash" if it tried. Rattling synth rhythms and a sharp-as-Wilkinson-Sword chorus combine with an arresting video, and it sounds like an easy top ten entry. Sadly, the public appeared to have different opinions to my own and it sold in disappointing numbers, not enough to even register in the icy January Top 75. If you're confused by this point, imagine how the band must have felt.

The group would soldier on into the early nineties, creating the cult club single "Dalai Lama Loves You All" in 1993, before moving on to other things. Key members Nick Whitecross, Jon Kingsley Hall and Geroge Stewart have had considerable success since the band's heyday working with Gareth Gates, Kim Wilde, Candy Dulfer and X-Press 2, and reformed in 2015 to release the LPs "Digital People" and "Fathome". 

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