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A Simple Minds Convention will be taking place in Glasgow on the 6th April 2003. Organised by Shaun Tranter and Clive Johnson, the same team who put together the previous convention in 1999, the event will take place at the Renfrew Ferry, where Simple Minds were photographed for Waterfront promotion.

No longer the draughty ferry where Jim, Charlie, Mick, Mel and Derek were seen freezing, the Renfrew Ferry is now a floating entertainments centre, docked on the Clyde.

Sample Minds will be playing (the band formally known as Band For The Tribes), original drummer Brian McGee will be there, and Clive and Shaun are planning more (which will be announced in due course.)

For more details about the convention, and the start of the charity auction listing, can be found on the Convention Page.

AlbumReal Life
CatalogueVirgin SIMCDX 10
TracksReal Life/See The Lights/Let There Be Love/Woman/Stand By Love/Let The Children Speak/African Skies/Ghostrider/Banging On The Door/Travelling Man/Rivers Of Ice/When Two Worlds Collide
Remastering HighlightsDifficult to quantify. It does sound 'different' but is it better?
PackagingWhat happened to the original 'blue logo' sleeve? Virgin had decided to use the later 'white band sleeve'. The track listing on the back is also incorrect as the LP's running order was different: Let The Children Speak and African Skies are switched - this has not been changed for the CD. The full inner sleeve with lyrics has been faithfully reproduced along with the LP labels.

Tomas Hynes has a copy of Themes Volume One for sale. He'd like £40/60 Euro for this collectable box-set. E-mail him if you are interested.

And Christian Sinn has a large list of items for sale, trade and wanted. Again, contact him if you're interested in some great Simple Minds goodies. He sends the list out as Microsoft Excel files - ask for a text only version if you don't have that package.

Full information about the new One Step Closer single which was released in Holland by PIAS can be found here.

Apart from an edit of the title track, the CD offers nothing substantially new, since the other songs featured have appeared on previous releases.

The limited edition remasters are now starting to sell out. The standard editions, featuring the remastered CDs in standard jewelcases, will be released on the 6th January.

I believe that the limited edition remasters were limited to 1000 copies each, and, as mentioned above, are now starting to sell out. If you want to grab the set, then make it fast.

Because of that, I'll summarise the remastering of the remaining albums quickly, but more detailed reviews will appear over the next two weeks. In essence, Street Fighting Years (the last of their 1980s albums) is really the last to benefit from the remastering process as the 1980s analogue recording is cleared up and improved.

Real Life, Good News From The Next World and Néapolis all sound 'different', but not necessarily better. Strangely its Néapolis that yielded the most pleasant surprises from this batch (both in terms of the sound and the packaging), and Good News >From The Next World has suffered most, with some instruments seemingly disappearing from the mix.

So, I'd definitely get hold of Life In A Day, Real To Real Cacophony, Empires And Dance, Sons And Fascination, New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84), Sparkle In The Rain, Live In The City Of Light and Street Fighting Years. Give Real Life and Néapolis a listen, but avoid Good News From The Next World and Once Upon A Time.

AlbumStreet Fighting Years
CatalogueVirgin SIMCDX 9
TracksStreet Fighting Years/Soul Crying Out/Wall Of Love/This Is Your Land/Take A Step Back/Kick It In/Let It All Come Down/Mandela Day/Belfast Child/Biko/When Spirits Rise
Remastering HighlightsThe quieter songs shine out, especially Soul Crying Out and the heartstopping pause of Kick It In.
PackagingThe gatefold sleeve of the original album is reproduced too well (as When Spirits Rise is omitted from the track listing). The original had no inner sleeve, so the CD is housed in a black sleeve. The original labels were very plain with a small triangular Simple Minds logo - reproduced here, but badly done.

Some useful links for those trying to track down all these European releases: - stocks the new Night Of The Proms compilation CD. - has the 2-track One Step Closer single. - has the 3-track One Step Closer single.

Haven't purchased the tribute album yet? Sound samples for Swimming Towards the Sun are back online:

Click on Album Info/Tracklisting. The green arrows are for low quality samples (28K modem), while the yellow arrows are for medium quality samples (56K modem or faster).

Ajay Mistry has added some extra dialogue and clarified some of the lyrics which I couldn't figure out on the review of the Mandela Day bootleg. These have now been added to the comments.

Two versions of the Spaceface Remixes single have now been released in Italy.

The 12" from Absolutely features remixes from Stonebridge and Farfa. The Stonebridge remix was previously featured on a single-sided 12" from Absolutely released in August.

A 5" CD from Carosello pairs edited versions of the two tracks.

For more information, check out its entry in the discography.

One Step Closer has been released as a single in Holland by Eagle.

Two varients exist. A two-track CD in a card sleeve offers an edit of One Step Closer joined by New Sunshine (previously released with the first Spaceface single).

A three-track CD offers a little more, by adding the Phunk Investigation Clubinvest remix of Cry (previously released on the Cry Remixes single.)

After the muffled sound of the Once Upon A Time remaster, the series gets back on its feet with the live album Live In The City Of Light. The remastering is excellent, being crystal clear, and featuring a depth of sound not heard before.

Whilst the sleeve isn't embossed (like the limited edition vinyl original), Virgin have come up trumps again by including the original album booklet in the CD package. This features different artwork and pictures to the original CD booklet.

AlbumLive In The City Of Light
CatalogueVirgin SIMCDX 8
TracksGhostdancing/Big Sleep/Waterfront/Promised You A Miracle/Someone Somewhere (In Summertime)/Oh Jungleland/Alive And Kicking/Don't You (Forget About Me)/Once Upon A Time/Book Of Brilliant Things/East At Easter/Sanctify Yourself/Love Song-Sun City-Dance To The Music/New Gold Dream
Remastering HighlightsThe whole double album is crystal clear - highly recommended.
PackagingGatefold sleeve houses two CDs in black sleeves. Original album booklet also included.

White-label and commercial 12" copies of the new Spaceface remix single are now starting to circulate.

The white-label promo 12" couples the full length Stonebridge and Farfa remixes (Absolutely ABR 027).

These tracks are shared by the commercial 12". Not much else is known about this at the moment, except that copies will be available from Italian DJ store next week - you can preorder now.

Record Collector devoted a full page to the first set of reissues in their November issue (number 279).

Reviewer Daryl Easlea has come up with the goods, writing the first fair and balanced reapprasal of Simple Minds earliest offerings. He may not like Sparkle In The Rain ("the Minds are off to a stomping odyssey"), but he firmly reiterates the early promise of the group: "This reissue affords us the opportunity to revel in the hope and promise that Simple Minds once carried."

In fact, he elevates New Gold Dream to the position it deserves: "New Gold Dream is one of the greatest pop albums ever recorded. There can be no two ways about it."

Only the first six rematers are evaluated, with Easlea admitting that he would not be kind to their stadium-era material. I wonder what he would have written about Néapolis however.

It's a good write-up and puts it all in context. And the final words? "However, if you need a memory jog as to when Simple Minds were enjoying their illusive moment scaling the peaks of the pop-art interface, Empires And Dance, Sons And Fascination, and, of course, New Gold Dream are still beautiful, worthy albums.".

I missed another mistake with the Real To Real Cacophony remaster which has been pointed out to me - the inner bag has the same artwork on both sides. It's currently believed that every copy is bad. Of all the remasters, Real To Real Cacophony has been treated the worst in terms of packaging.

Which brings me onto the worst of the remasters in terms of audio: Once Upon A Time. It sounds more muffled and undefined with everything merging in a mushy mix. There are some pleasant surprises coming with the rest of the series, but the treatment of this album is very disappointing.

AlbumOnce Upon A Time
CatalogueVirgin SIMCDX 7
TracksOnce Upon A Time/All The Things She Said/Ghostdancing/Alive And Kicking/Oh Jungleland/I Wish You Were Here/Sanctify Yourself/Come A Long Way
Remastering HighlightsNone
PackagingOriginal cover, inner bag (including lyrics) and album labels reproduced in full.

The 25th anniversary of Simple Minds has been mentioned several times over the past couple of years - complete with puzzled looks from many fans who assumed the band came into existence in late 1977. These early anniversaries were associated with Jim and Charlies first band Biba-Rom! (in 1976), and also as gigs as Johnny And The Self Abusers (in 1977).

Well this month is the 25th anniversary of their first single, the infamous Saints And Sinners.

But, if you ask me when the 25th anniversary of Simple Minds is, then I can be pretty definite... TODAY.

On the 9th November, 1977, Johnny And The Self Abusers cut a 7-track demo tape at CaVa Studios, Glasgow. The name given to this band for those sessions was Simple Minds. The Abusers played their last gigs as Simple Minds. And Jim was on the phone to Ted Caroll at Chiswick trying (in vain) to get the name on the 7" changed to Simple Minds.

For me, this is the first recording by Simple Minds, the earliest item I have with Simple Minds written on it.

Happy 25th Anniversary Simple Minds

I don't know if Jim would necessarily agree with the above, but here's one fan who's content to say "Bloody fantastic and keep going guys." And with the Proms currently taking place, the new album being written in hotel rooms, the back catalogue being remastered and reissued and singles appearing almost monthly then it looks like things are going great!

A new Simple Minds single was released yesterday.

It is the commercial varient of the Spaceface 12" promo. Issued in Italy on the Carosello label, it features edits of the Stonebridge and Farfa remixes.

Spaceface - Remix CD
1. Spaceface [Stonebridge Radio Mix] (4:40)
2. Spaceface [Farfa Edit Mix] (3:50)
Carosello CARSH045-2
Issued in Italy only.

A 12" featuring the full length versions of both mixes also exists - although it isn't known if this is a promo or commercial offering.

The Real To Real Cacophony remaster was hit with 'production delays', pushing its release into the second batch of remasters.

Whilst the quality of the music on the CD is the acid test (and is well worth purchasing for that alone), the remasters also boast their limited edition reproductions of the original artwork. Unfortunately Virgin decided not to reproduce the original textured sleeve - but most shocking is the album's title: REEL To Real Cacophony.

(If the reissues are being sold on the strength of the remastering and the full reproduction of the original artwork, then getting the album's title wrong is worthy of mention.)

AlbumReal To Real Cacophony
CatalogueVirgin SIMCDX 2
TracksReal To Real/Naked Eye/Citzen (Dance Of Youth)/Carnival (Shelter In A Suitcase)/Factory/Cacophony/Veldt/Premonition/Changeling/Film Theme/Calling Your Name/Scar
Remastering HighlightsA crystal clear Premonition and the clinical synths at the start of Calling Your Name.
PackagingOriginal textured sleeve dumped in favour of smooth dark blue offering. Inner bag has the same artwork on both sides(!) and original Arista label ignored. And the album's title is incorrect.

The rest of the remasters limited editions are released today: Real To Real Cacophony, Once Upon A Time, Live In The City Of Lights, Street Fighting Years, Real Life, Good News From The Next World and Néapolis.

Some copies of New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84) are missing their gold inner sleeves or have been dispatched with black ones. Amazon will send replacement copies - local high street shops should also exchange for complete copies.

AlbumSparkle In The Rain
CatalogueVirgin SIMCDX 6
TracksUp On The Catwalk/Book Of Brilliant Things/Speed Your Love To Me/Waterfront/East At Easter/Street Hassle/White Hot Day/"C" Moon Cry Like A Baby/The Kick Inside Of Me/Shake Off The Ghosts
Remastering HighlightsBeing able to hear Derek Forbes during Book Of Brilliant Things, crystal clear drumming in "C" Moon Cry Like A Baby.
PackagingFull reproduction of the original LP with inner sleeve (featuring artwork and credits) and black-and-white geometrical artwork labels.


Write down Saturday November 16th 2002 in your diary and prepare those dancing shoes, because.... Simple Minds Belgian Fanclub Sparkle Through The Years presents A Sparkling NEW GOLD DREAM memories, burning GOLD memories....A smashing EIGHTIES Party.

You are most welcome from 21:00 CET in Paddy's Irish Pub, Stationsplein, Aalst

Admission is FREE

MUSIC by DJ CAPTAIN KIRK and maybe guest appearance of DJ MOON

Expect loads of Good EIGHTIES music (such as Simple Minds, U2, Echo And The Bunnymen, New Order, Depeche Mode, Yazoo, Bauhaus, Tom Tom Club, Pil, David Bowie, Flash And the Pan, Yello, Men Without Hats, Human League, Sisters Of Mercy, The Cure, Hall & Oates, ...... to name a few bands lol)

BE THERE and meet some other FELLOWMINDS!!! We are looking forward seeing you there and hope to dance into the eighties, together with you!!!


Two general points about the New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84) remaster:
  • US fans should really consider purchasing this album. All the A&M pressings of New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84) featured an edited version of the title track, clocking in at a good 45 seconds shorter than it should have done.
  • All versions of the album included lyrics on the inner sleeve except the UK edition. Therefore the remaster packaging won't feature any lyrics.
AlbumNew Gold Dream (81,82,83,84)
CatalogueVirgin SIMCDX 5
TracksSomeone Somewhere (In Summertime)/Colours Fly And Catherine Wheel/Promised You A Miracle/Big Sleep/Somebody Up There Likes You/New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84)/Glittering Prize/Hunter And The Hunted/King Is White And In The Crowd
Remastering HighlightsRediscovering Somebody Up There Likes You
PackagingOriginal LP sleeve reproduced in all its glory (the previous UK CDs featured a different design), the minimal gold inner sleeve is reproduced in full, and the CD features gold titles and logos.

Pictures of Jim and Charlie can now be found on the official proms website here.

To get there directly, use this link.

Their set includes:
Alive And Kicking
Belfast Child and
Don't You (Forget About Me)

Limited edition Simple Minds compilations are now on sale in Belgium, The Netherlands and Germany, to tie in with their Proms appearances.

It's a repackaged Best Of, with new artwork, and The Real Life by Raven Maize being replaced by Cry and Spaceface.

The prices is around 20 Euros.

The full track listing is:
1. Don't You (Forget About Me)
2. Promised You A Miracle
3. Waterfront
4. Alive And Kicking
5. Glittering Prize
6. All The Things She Said
7. Sanctify Yourself
8. Someone Somewhere (In Summertime)
9. Ghostdancing
10. Up On The Catwalk
11. Speed Your Love To Me
12. Theme For Great Cities
13. Love Song
14. The American
15. Sweat In Bullet
16. Life In A Day
17. I Travel

1. Let There Be Love
2. This Is Your Land
3. Kick It In
4. Let It All Come Down
5. See The Lights
6. Stand By Love
7. Real Life
8. She's A River
9. Hypnotised
10. Glitterball
11. War Babies
12. Mandela Day
13. Biko
14. Belfast Child
15. Cry
16. Spaceface

AlbumSons And Fascination/Sister Feelings Call
CatalogueVirgin SIMCDX 4
TracksIn Trance As Mission/Sweat In Bullet/70 Cities As Love Brings The Fall/Boys From Brazil/Love Song/This Earth That You Walk Upon/Sons And Fascination/Seeing Out The Angel/Theme For Great Cities/The American/20th Century Promised Land/League Of Nations/Careful In Career/Sound In 70 Cities
Remastering HighlightsThe metallic echo of Sweat In Bullet, the crystal clear vocals of Seeing Out The Angel and the sheer exuberance of Wonderful In Young Life
PackagingA gatefold sleeve is used to reproduce both the sleeves of Sons And Fascination (outer artwork) and Sister Feelings Call (inner artwork). Both feature one typo, namely 'Careful Career'. As the original album had no inner sleeve, the CD is housed in a black sleeve. The CD itself features artwork based on Malcolm Garrett's original label design. And the whole of both albums is now available on one CD.

The 2002 Night Of The Proms is now underway, with Jim and Charlie performing a twenty minute set and playing three songs.

All the tour dates can be found here.

Dutch Record label Disky (who should be familar to hardcore collectors, having reissued Real To Real Cacophony, Real Life, boxing them both up as Original Gold and also quietly reissuing Life In A Day, have released several DVDs of music and videos under the title of The Greatest DVD Music Collection.

Four of the titles feature Simple Minds videos.

These DVDs represent the first time that Simple Minds have been issued on that format (not including the bootleg I highlighted the other day).

The Greatest DVD Music Collection. Original hits and video clips - Pop Classics
Includes Simple Minds video Sanctify Yourself
DISKY DVD 927889

The Greatest DVD Music Collection. Original hits and video clips - Mega Hits
Includes Simple Minds video Don't You (Forget About Me)
DISKY DVD 927839

The Greatest DVD Music Collection. Original hits and video clips - Hit Explosion
Includes Simple Minds video Let There Be Love
DISKY DVD 927849

The Greatest DVD Music Collection. Original hits and video clips - Super Hits
Includes Simple Minds video Kick It In
DISKY DVD 927879

13 NOVEMBER 2002 - NIGHT OF THE PROMS WITH Sparkle Through The Years

SPARKLE THROUGH THE YEARS organises a fanclub gettogether on NOTP on Wednesday 13 November 2002. Which means we reserved some tickets for "the standing area before the stage" so we can have a big party while Simple Minds are on stage. (Don't forget to wear your Sparkle T-shirt). Simple Minds will perform 3 songs. We have tickets available at the price of 17.70 EUR instead of 19.36 EUR. If you want a ticket, send an e-mail to and pay 17.7 EUR per ticket on bankaccount 001-3784631-58 with reference your name and the number of tickets. We have only have a limited number of tickets. We will send you confirmation by e-mail and as soon as soon as you receive the confirmation you can pay for your tickets. Tickets who are not payed are considered as not reserved.

We hope to meet you at the Proms, in a good mood, wearing your sparkle T-shirt!!! Let's have a party..... Start rehearsing those la-la-la-la 's.....

Mark Van Mullem (C-Moon)

AlbumEmpires And Dance
CatalogueVirgin SIMCDX 3
TracksI Travel/Today I Died Again/Celebrate/This Fear Of Gods/Capital City/Constantinople Line/Twist-Run-Repulsion/30 Frames A Second/Kant-Kino/Room
Remastering HighlightsMcGee's drumming during Capital City and the analogue synth meltdown into feedback as 30 Frames A Second unwinds.
PackagingFull reproduction of the outer sleeve. The lyric sheet included with the original album is now the inner sleeve. Blue Arista company labels not reproduced.

The first Simple Minds bootleg DVD has appeared on eBay. This version of Verona is strictly unofficial. It includes the original video, NTSC format, and no extras.

However some Simple Minds tracks have already appeared on some compilation DVDs. More news on those tomorrow.

Has anyone got a set-list for the Dubai gig? Please send it in if you do. Thanks.

The first five remastered albums have appeared in the shops in the UK. For some reason, Real To Real Cacophony has been delayed and won't be released until the 4th November.

The albums are housed in heavy duty cardboard sleeves which reproduce the original album's artwork (even down to the 'Side A' and 'Side B' titles). Inside these, the CD is further packaged in a paper sleeve, reproducing the original inner sleeves of the LP itself.

Another great touch is the reproduction of the original label design on the CD. Life In A Day , for instance, features Brian Hogg's original tambourine label design.

AlbumLife In A Day
CatalogueVirgin SIMCDX 1
TracksSomeone/Life In A Day/Sad Affair/All For You/Pleasantly Disturbed/No Cure/Chelsea Girl/Wasteland/Destiny/Murder Story
Remastering HighlightsPleasantly Disturbed and Wasteland - both crystal clear with no hiss.
PackagingAccurate reproduction of the original outer sleeve. Oddly, a 'Zoom Records Production' has been added to the album's credits under the 'low temperature' comment, which isn't on the original. Great idea to use the original tambourine labels for the CD itself.

I'll comment on the other CDs over the next few days.

When Simple Minds first appeared at the Proms in 1997, Virgin released The Promised, an updated version of Glittering Prize (81/92), to sell at the Proms concerts and various record retailers throughout the countries where the Proms were taking place.

It looks like a similar package will be released for the 2002 season, using last years Best Of as a base, and adding Cry and Spaceface. The artwork will be changed, this limited edition double CD will be available in Belgium, The Netherlands and Germany, and it will be sold until the 31st December.

As everyone's probably chasing Cry releases and the remasters, it's probably one for the completists only.

A new Cry remix single has been released in Italy by Eagle. It has turned up as an import in several European countries.

It features the Phunk Investigation radio edit and the full Tazz Glasgoal remix, which previously turned up on the Absolutely 12" singles. They're joined by the Charly Fath Classic 80s Mix, which is unique to this CD.

Both the Phunk Investigation and Tazz remixes rework the original song, whilst Charly Fath creates a loop around the chorus and underpins the mix with new keyboards (the effect is similar to Vince Clarke remix of Homosapien. Highly recommended.

For more information, check out its page in the discography.

There's also rumours that One Step Closer is going to get the single treatment. This news originated from Benelux - perhaps PIAS are considering something?

The remasters series from Virgin slipped its release date (well, it wouldn't be a Simple Minds release if it didn't slip), and the first set of remasters will be released on the 21st October.

The next phase, consisting of Once Upon A Time, Live In The City Of Light (still a double album), Street Fighting Years, Real Life, Good News From The Next World and Néapolis will be released on November 4th. Again, these are released as limited edition packages in sleeves reproducing the original album artwork. (The next small gripe is the use of the 'band' picture for Real Life and not the original 'logo' sleeve.)

Adverts have appeared in various publications in the UK. A quarter page ad has appeared in Q Magazine where the remasters were reviewed. Badly. Good on Virgin for buying up some space though - perhaps Eagle should take note?

And the future plans of Virgin are very exciting. They are still open to negotiation... but here's hoping.

Band For The Tribes recently played a series of gigs in England. Band member Simon Hayward kept a tour diary. With his permission, here's the behind-the-scenes view:

Saturday 21st September
Dave and Steve collect our German band members, Thorsten and Jacky from the airport. I'm delayed in traffic so we rendezvous at a service station on the M6. It was great to see the guys again and this was the first time I'd met our bass player, Jacky. I was immediately struck by the startling similarity between Jacky and Dr Evil!!!

We drove to Steve's house - which is in the middle of no-where. There were no groupies, but lots of sheep (which is the same thing in Dave's book!). That evening we went to see a Bon Jovi tribute band. They dressed in wigs and stuff and it was very funny to watch - for all the wrong reasons.

Sunday 22nd September
First day of rehearsals! We rehearsed in a venue in Preston.(The same one Bon Jovi played in the previous night). I was very nervous as this was the first time I'd played in the band. The first track we played was Waterfront and it sounded really good and everyone was filled with confidence. We had a list of 27 songs to practice and we played about 20 on this day. All were pretty good, though we had some things to sort out with New Sunshine Morning, Theme For Great Cities and One Step Closer. That night we were treated to some wonderful home cooking by Steve's girlfriend and talked into the early hours.

Monday 23rd September
We are working through the list of reserve songs. War Babies sounds great and we decide to drop Hypnotised, which at 7 minutes was just too long (it sounded good though!). Then there was the East At Easter incident!!! East At Easter was included in the set at the last minute. I'd programmed a backing track with lots of choirs and stuff on - though we couldn't follow the arrangement. These were tense moments. After such a great rehearsal the previous day things were not sounding or feeling too good. Then Steve gets his bum out and everyone laughs again!!!

Tuesday 24th September
I'd stayed at Dave's house the previous night and we discussed East At Easter and the other reserve songs. It was decided that we would concentrate on getting the main set right and would not practice Room or Hello (which was sad as they were two of my favourites). Rehearsals were good and we decided to jam East At Easter - which worked well. That evening we had a nice Indian meal. We then introduced Jacky to the Austin Powers movies!

Wednesday 25th September: Gig day!!!
I had to get up really early to create some new sounds to play on East At Easter. We had another wonderful German breakfast then our convoy of cars are loaded to the hilt with our gear and we set off for sunny Crewe. We arrive and unload our gear at about midday. I'd made a large Claddagh backdrop which looked impressive though took ages to get to hang up. We then checked into our hotel and went into town for something to eat.

The Limelight Club is run by ex-rock roadies!!! They were really funny. It has to be said the hospitality was excellent. The soundcheck went well - we did Love Song, New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84) and finished on Waterfront. Everything sounded really good.

We were able to chill out for a couple of hours and I was amazed by how many members of had travelled to see us. I was even more amazed that so many from around Europe had made the effort - I hoped we lived up to their expectations. It was fantastic to see so many familiar faces and filled me with confidence.

Now it was show time!!!

As the intro music starts we all have a huddle in the dressing room then off we go - my live debut with Band for the Tribes!

The set list was:
Soundtrack for Every Heaven
Once Upon a Time Intro Music
The American
She's a River
Speed Your Love to Me
Glittering Prize (The PYAM87 b-side version)
Don't You Forget About Me
Theme for Great Cities
East At Easter (84 version)
War Babies
Promised You a Miracle (LITCOL Version)
New Sunshine Morning
Stand by Love
Big Sleep
Belfast Child
New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84)
Sanctify Yourself (Mandela 88 version)
= = = =
One Step Closer
Love Song
= = = =
Someone Somewhere in Summertime
Alive and Kicking

There were a few technical problems at the start. For some reason Steve's mike broke on Waterfront. I gave him my backing vocal mike and in the process Steve disconnected Dave's guitar amp mike (he's a clumsy git!). Though the vocals were sorted, The American and She's a River had no guitar coming out the front of house speakers. We were oblivious of this as we could hear Dave's guitar fine on stage. All the rest of the set went well and the crowd were amazing. At the end on Alive and Kicking seeing everyone waving their arms and singing sent tingles down my spine (or maybe I'd just wet myself!)

We'd hoped that Mel Gaynor would join us on stage for a couple of songs. Unfortunately he couldn't make it, but sent Thorsten some drumsticks for good luck.

After the gig we have a 'few' drinks before retiring to our hotel.

Thursday 26th September
I'm the only one who shows up for breakfast! (I wondered if the other guys had gone without me!) It turns out they're just lazy!

We collect our stuff from the Limelight Club and I'm amazed that we drunk all the beer we were given in our dressing room - no wonder my head hurt.

We have dinner with some fans and I have to repair the clutch on my car.

We're back on the road again and head over to Blackburn. When we arrive we can't get access to the venue and have to wait for nearly two hours outside. When the owner finally turns up we don't get an apology or get offered a drink while the PA Company sets up. I'm NOT happy.

The venue is VERY small and the PA takes until after 9pm to set up. There are already people in the venue when we finally soundcheck. We were so squashed on stage it was really uncomfortable. I lost my rag a bit with the whole thing (which is very out of character). We decided after soundchecking War Babies just to get on with the gig.

The set was:
Theme for Great Cities
The American
King is White and in the Crowd (91 Version)
Speed Your Love to Me
Glittering Prize
Don't You Forget About Me
Love Song
Great Leap Forward
Someone Somewhere in Summertime
Stand by Love
Belfast Child
New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84)
Sanctify Yourself
Alive and Kicking

Theme For Great Cities sounded fine - though after that I can honestly say I have no idea what I played or sang for the whole set. I couldn't hear anything apart from the drums. I was also disturbed that there was an electrical burning smell in my corner!

The crowd were great and the feedback was that on their side of the stage everything sounded OK.

After Crewe it has to be said that this was a bit of a come down. (Though it's amazing what a few bottles of Bud and 7 bars of chocolate can do to cheer you up!!!)

Friday 27th September
The last gig of our European tour (yeah, right!).

We head off to Bradford. When we arrive I'm amazed at the size of the venue. We risk our lives putting up the claddagh backdrop (seriously) and start the soundcheck. Instrumentally we're sounding fine. However, there's a problem - where's Steve? I have to sing Love Song and Waterfront, which I secretly enjoyed!

At this gig there is a support band called The Avalanche Movement who are really good and have a dancer like Bez from the Happy Mondays.

Again it was great to see so many faces from at the gig.

After the previous night we were determined to make this gig as good as it could be.

The set was:
Theme for Great Cities
The American
She's a River
Promised You a Miracle
Speed Your Love to Me
Don't You forget About Me
One Step Closer
Love Song
New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84)
Sanctify Yourself
Alive and Kicking
= = = =
Belfast Child
East at Easter

The crowd, the lights and the sound were really good (I felt really comfortable on stage).

During She's a River I remembered I'd forgot to give the sound engineer a tape to record the gig. I asked my friend to go to the dressing room to get a blank to tape out my bag - he returned with a roll of selotape!!!!! (I was crying with laughter so much that I couldn't sing the backing on River.)

During Ghostdancing, Steve Robinson joined us on stage and danced like a trooper - however, the award for best Jim Kerr high kick in the world EVER, goes to our singer Steve. He launched himself from the stage which was about 5 ft high, did a mid air twist and landed fifteen feet into the crowd. I thought he was going to die!!!

Thorsten managed to bang a hole in his snare drum during Don't You - that guy hits hard!!!

After the gig I saw the video and it looked and sounded amazing - I was most impressed. (The lights on Space were stunning). It was a great high to finish on.

Saturday 28th September
We get the equipment and say our goodbyes - Dave, Thorsten, Steve and Jacky are the most wonderful people - it was such a pleasure to be with them and play great Simple Minds music.

Thanks to EVERYONE who came to see us - I hope we lived up to your expectations and you enjoyed our gigs as much as we did. We'd also like to say a special thanks to Stephanie and Anne Marie, who not only travelled such a long way to see all the gigs, but also helped so much with organisation and transportation.

We'll be back again next year - with a new name (more details soon).

We love you all.
Simon, Dave, Steve, Thorsten and Jacky (aka Dr Evil).
Night Of The Proms: The 2002 Edition


+ Foreigner in Germany and Belgium
+ Alphaville in Germany
+ Michael McDonald in Belgium
+ Marco Borsato, Bonnie Tyler and Petra Berger in Holland

After Roxette pulled out of the Night Of The Proms due to ill-health, it's been announced that Simple Minds will replace them at short notice.

This is Jim and Charlie's third appearance at the event, after extensively touring with the Proms in 1997, and making some guest appearances in 2001.

On-line ticket agents are already listing Simple Minds for the full proms season, although the band's involvement with every gig hasn't been confirmed yet. The full list of dates is given below.

Orchestral versions of Don't You (Forget About Me), Alive And Kicking, Someone Somewhere (In Summertime) and Belfast Child were played at previous events.

For more information check out the Night Of The Proms website.

Fri25/10/02AntwerpBelgiumSportpaleis Antwerpen
Sat26/10/02AntwerpBelgiumSportpaleis Antwerpen
Sun27/10/02AntwerpBelgiumSportpaleis Antwerpen
Thu31/10/02AntwerpBelgiumSportpaleis Antwerpen
Fri01/11/02AntwerpBelgiumSportpaleis Antwerpen
Sat02/11/02AntwerpBelgiumSportpaleis Antwerpen
Thu07/11/02AntwerpBelgiumSportpaleis Antwerpen
Fri08/11/02AntwerpBelgiumSportpaleis Antwerpen
Sat09/11/02AntwerpBelgiumSportpaleis Antwerpen
Sun10/11/02AntwerpBelgiumSportpaleis Antwerpen
Thu14/11/02AntwerpBelgiumSportpaleis Antwerpen
Fri15/11/02AntwerpBelgiumSportpaleis Antwerpen
Sat16/11/02AntwerpBelgiumSportpaleis Antwerpen
Sun17/11/02AntwerpBelgiumSportpaleis Antwerpen
Tue12/12/02BremenGermanyStadthalle Bremen
Thu12/12/02AntwerpBelgiumSportpaleis Antwerpen
Fri13/12/02AntwerpBelgiumSportpaleis Antwerpen
Sat14/12/02AntwerpBelgiumSportpaleis Antwerpen
Sun15/12/02OberhausenGermanyKonig-Pilsener Arena
Mon16/12/02HannoverGermanyPreussag Arena
Fri20/12/02CologneGermanyCologne Arena
Sat21/12/02CologneGermanyCologne Arena
Sun22/12/02HamburgGermanyColorline Arena

Eagle have just released another Simple Minds single, copies of which have turned up on-line (via music websites and eBay) and in local record stores.

It's their packaging of the Cry Remix single, which was originally released by Absolutely Records on two 12" singles last June.

Eagle have also commissioned their own remix of the track - although there's been no feedback about the Charly Fath '80s' Remix yet.

The full listing is:

1. Cry [Phunk Investigation Radio Edit Remix]
2. Cry [Tazz Glasgoal Remix]
3. Cry [Charly Fath '80s' Remix]
Eagle EAGX235
With picture sleeve in slim-line jewelcase.

The first issues of the Simple Minds remaster series are being released today. Life In A Day, Real To Real Cacophony, Empires And Dance, Sons And Fascination (including the whole of Sister Feelings Call), New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84) and Sparkle In The Rain are being issued in limited edition sleeves reproducing the original artwork.

A set of CDR acetates for the release is shown right. The remastering is the same as The Best Of - a slightly warmer mix with many subtle elements being revealed for the first time. (For example, Pleasantly Disturbed sounds great as it's lost the slight hiss heard on the original CD issue.)

Slightly worrying, and considering they're using the original artwork, slightly inexcusable, are Virgin's two mistakes on the Real To Real Cacophony release. Hopefully this is limited to the acetate only.

Namely the album isn't called Reel To Real Cacophony and the first song is called Real To Real.

Just when you thought it was safe to start saving up for the tour next year, Simple Minds will be playing several times before the end of this year.

The first date to surface is in Dubai where Simple Minds are playing at the Lifestyle Music Festival on the 18th Oct. Other bands at the gig are Beverley Knight and Wonderstuff.

For more information, click here.

Simple Minds are also expected to be playing in Arabia.

If that's a little too expensive, then you could check out Band For The Tribes who are playing at several venues this week in the UK. Their 'mini-tour' is:

25th Sept: Limelight Club, Crewe, UK
Free entry, band on stage at around 9-10 PM
Late bar until 12:30 AM

26th Sept: North Cafe Bar, Blackburn, UK
Price around £5 on the door, band on stage at 9 PM
Late bar until 01:30 AM

27th Sept: Bradford Rio, Bradford, UK
£5 on the door, band on stage at around 10 PM.

Swimming Towards The Sun, the tribute album, has landed. I received my copy on Friday, and reviews and comments are already starting to circulate on the mailing list.

The packaging and presentation is 100% professional - a pack shot of the CD and the inner digipak sleeve is shown on the right. This is not a CDR with dodgy ink-jet printing.

If you want to hear some Simple Minds songs in new (sometimes startling) arrangements then I thoroughly recommend this disc. It's a limited edition of 900, so put your order in soon (if you haven't). You will not be disappointed.
In the words of Jim Kerr, "it is impressive on many fronts."

The final track-listing is:

1. Scar by Simon Hayward
2. New Gold Dream by The Echoing Green
3. Seeing Out The Angel by Piston Picnique
4. Oh Jungleland by The Enflamed
5. Someone Somewhere (In Summertime) by Blow Up
6. Alive And Kicking by Band For The Tribes
7. Soul Crying Out by Go Deep
8. She's A River by Flash Cube
9. Hynotised by Youringa
10. Life In A Day by Basic Idea
11. The American by Meatboy
12. Hunter And The Hunter by Sjoblom
13. Waterfront by The Dissidents
14. Don't You (Forget About Me) by Thrust
15. 70 Cities As Love Brings The Fall by Fronzek vs. Hayward

"Since started charging from streaming radio stations, it's been impossible for people to access the tribute album sample tracks. I hope to find the time to put up some more samples for download or streaming soon. But in the meantime, you can check out Thrust's version of Don't You Forget About Me at their site:

You can't download it, but you can stream it either at dial-up or broadband speed. A lot of people are telling me this is one of their favorites from the album. So, I encourage everyone who has not heard it to give it a listen."

Mike Simpson

The Stonebridge remix of Spaceface has finally appeared.

Sneaked out to various DJ outlets, this single sided 12" from Absolutely Records features the Stonebridge remix of the song. And only the remix - nothing else. Unfortunately no other information about this release has come to light yet, so it's uncertain whether this is an advance promo for something else, or just a limited release for the DJs.

More information can be found here.

Those despairing that these releases are rarer than hens' teeth should check out They are stocking the Cry Remixes as well as this new one.

"May it never be said that I didn't stoop really low and use gimmicks to sell copies of the tribute album.....(read on!).....

OK, the tribute album has been born. I actually don't have the CDs in my hands, but I checked the status of my order, and the replication stage is now complete. So, THEY LIVE! :-) They just need to be packaged and mailed to me. So, I expect to have them in about a week. I'm amazed at the sense of giddiness I am feeling now. Believe me, I've been looking forward to this more than anyone out there, and I've actually heard all of the tracks. It's sort of like having a first born child. Anyway, enough about me!

Anyway, here is what I am offering. Many of you have probably seen the photos that I shot of the band in Chicago on July 1st:

I took the 25 best of these (definitely not including any shots with me in them!) and have ordered 3 sets of Kodak prints (4 inches x 6 inches). I already have a few of the pictures as prints, and they really turned out great. They don't look like digital photographs printed out on ink jet paper. They look like the real thing. To the point, I am going to give these 3 sets away to 3 randomly selected people who have ordered the tribute album by the time that it gets to my house. That includes everyone who have already ordered it, of course. So, if you're thinking of buying a copy of the album. Now is a very good time. Delivery time is expected to be about 2 weeks, and if you order in the next few days you're eligible to be in the drawing for the Chicago prints. The album can be ordered at:

Credit card orders will be recognized right away. But if you want to send a check or money order, please let me know so I can enter your name in the drawing.

I'll be happy to answer any questions about the tribute album, ordering, or even the photos.

Mike Simpson

Update: Mike now has the albums. They are being distributed now.

Simple Re-issues

Selling over 25 million albums since their formation in Glasgow Simple Minds have established themselves as one the great Rock 'n' Roll bands of our time. At their peak they were arguably the biggest band in the world selling out stadiums and topping the album charts. However, the foundations for the highs the band reached were firmly laid in their early period, when they built a loyal fanbase releasing post punk classics of unquestionable credibility.

In these early albums the evangelical baritone of Jim Kerr and spine tingling guitar of Charlie Burchill struck a chord with the music world and it is in these albums that many feel the real sound of Simple Minds lies - intelligent, challenging and powerful in equal measure. As the NME described New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84), Simple Minds were "majestic and triumphant".

These fantastic sounding mini vinyl reissues are re-mastered from the original master tapes by Simon Heyworth using 24 bit technology and are packaged in heavy card with original outer and inner bag artwork.

This first batch of 6 album re-issues will be followed on 28th October by the release of the next 6 albums also as special edition mini-vinyl formats (released 30th September 2002). All 12 albums will be released as re-mastered standard editions towards the end of the year.

The above blurb from Virgin shows that the remastering work has been greater than expected.

On the 30th September, Life In A Day, Real To Real Cacophony, Empires And Dance, Sons And Fascination, New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84) and Sparkle In The Rain will be released in remastered form with limited edition card sleeves reproducing the original album's artwork. Promos for this set have also started to circulate as CD-acetates, confirming that we're going to be getting straight reissues of the albums.

The good news is that the two 'missing' tracks have been added to Sons And Fascination, so the new disc represents the full album with Sister Feelings Call.

The first mistake goes to Real To Real Cacophony which is titled Reel To Real Cacophony on the acetate sleeve. Virgin have always been confused about the album's title, releasing it under ever possible permutation of title. It's sloppy that with the original album's artwork being restored, we're still getting the wrong title.

There's also been much conjecture about the next six albums, released as limited editions on the 28th October. My guess at this time is: Once Upon A Time, Live In The City Of Light, Street Fighting Years, Real Life, Good News From The Next World and Néapolis. The last album presents a few problems as it's owned by EMI as was technology in 1998 so bad that Néapolis needs remastering already?

All twelve albums will appear in standard jewelcased form in time for Christmas.

Expect a repackaging of the singles from Virgin next year.

Virgin have set up a compeition to win the remasters - which may, or may not, be signed by Jim. You'll find all the details at:

Band For The Tribes (who can be heard on the tribute album performing Alive And Kicking) have uploaded some of their covers to the There you will find East At Easter, New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84), Pleasantly Disturbed and Ghostdancing.

The New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84) remix by DJ T called Gold Dreamer has finally appeared as two 12" promos. Both can be ordered from Pure Groove Records. (Just do a search on DJ T).

Gold Dreamer is written by Simple Minds and produced by DJ T.

I would advise getting the first 12" which features the more ambient original and Phunk Investigation mixes. These include the new vocals recorded by Jim especially for this release (including the "zero one, zero two, zero thee, zero four" lyric.)

The second 12" definitely lives up to its title as hard house. These are more energetic remixes and move away from the original song. The Voltswagen Mix is very recognizable as hard-core New Gold Dream whilst Grinder's mix gives recognition to earlier unauthorised remixes, and slips in the female groans from Usura's Open Your Mind.

It's released on Y2K House records, a label is owned by Pure Groove. This should ring a few bells as Remote Recordings, who issued Malcolm Duffy's remix of Homosapien, are also owned by Pure Groove. Perhaps a commercial offering from Y2K House/Mindmoods is on the cards?

Watch this space.

Gold Dreamer: DJ T
A1. "Gold Dreamer" [Original Mix]
B1. "Gold Dreamer" [Phunk Investigation Mix]
Y2K House Y2K032
Promotional 12" in picture sleeve.

Gold Dreamer: DJ T
A1. "Gold Dreamer" [Voltswagen Mix]
B1. "Gold Dreamer" [Grinder Mix]
Y2K House Y2K032r
Promotional 12" in picture sleeve.

Mike Simpson is currently waiting the final master from his engineer which he expects in the next day or so. Once it's arrived, he will send the disc off to be replicated - a process that's expected to take about two to three weeks. And once he receives those, they will be sent to everyone who's ordered a copy.

So, people will be getting their CDs through the post in September.

There are still copies up for grabs. Check out for more information on how to order.

Jim will be appearing on the Tribute To Frankie Miller: Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed but Most Definitely Blues! out on the 7th September. Frankie Miller is/was a blues singer from Scotland. Jim is apparently covering the song Ghost.


A couple of months ago a few belgian Simple Minds fans were chatting away on the Net and were loudly thinking about what a pitty it was that there wasn't such thing as a belgian or even european SIMPLE MINDS fanclub... Very soon the conclusion rised "why don't we do it ourselves?". And not much later, the 22nd of June 2002, we met up in Mechelen (Belgium), and had our very first meeting. The foundations for the brand new Simple Minds Fanclub were made...

A name for the newborn had to be found, and a few names popped up, and Sparkle Through The Years was the one that made it through a difficult selection process :-).

This seemed us the most approriate title to choose. Simple Minds ARE still Sparkle Through The Years. Fortunately they are not thinking about quiting yet. Sparkle Through The Years is also the name of a promo copy for the Sparkle in the Rain album, containing a few Sparkle selection ons side A (Speed Your Love To Me, Book Of Brilliant Things, C'Moon Cry Like A Baby, The Kick Inside of Me and Waterfront) and a compilation of older tracks on side B (Love Song, Someone Somewhere in Summertime, Promised You A Miracle, Celebrate and Permonition).

So here we are, coming on strong and at your service, the brand new Simpe Minds fanclub: Sparkling Through The Years. For more information on subscribing and activities (and there'll be a lot), please check out, or send an e-mail to

Mark Van Mullem
Chairman of Sparkle Through The Years
Webmaster of

WEDNESDAY 14/08/2002 - SIMPLE MINDS @ MARKTROCK + Fanclub Day in De Colff

During Marktrock, Leuven, where SIMPLE MINDS will play at 22h50, Sparkle Through The Years organises a Fanclub meeting in Taverne De Colff ( upstairs in Local "C4" situated on the "Oude Markt". Before and after the gig Simple Minds fans can get together there. But you'll need to be early on the Oude Markt, During that day you can off course subscribe to our fanclub or have a chat with one of the Fanclub Staffmembers.

After the Kosheen gig there'll be a Fanclub Afterparty with DJ River and DJ Moon.

p r o g r a m m e:
Simple Minds music all day - Simple Minds fanclub subscriptions possibilities - Simple Minds After Party: Please send email to if you want to enter the afterparty which is private. Only 100 persons will be allowed (for security reasons). First come, first serve. Your name will be checked at the entrance. More info:

Set-lists continue to be added to the tour section. There hasn't been any surprises recently, although Cry has reappeared in the set-lists.

Sugar On The Brain: The Floating World Show Comes to Washington DC

"We will not do one less than great show on this tour. I guarantee you this. I feel it and I promise... Over my dead body, you will not witness us falling nor fading like a Death Star. Truly, and once again... Already my heart is beating like the wheels of a fast train, coming your way and then taking you with us."

Jim Kerr

Walk With Me In The Garden
After a great Indian dinner outside on a terrace in the trendy hip Adams-Morgan neighborhood, the four of us walked down U Street to the venue. I had never been to the 9:30 Club, a small venue that attracts lots of recognizable names. Garbage, for example, sold out two shows there this summer. What my friends warned me was that it was located in a questionable neighborhood. They were right. The place gets accolades from a local newspaper, but it's still not the place to linger or get stupid in public. I do wonder why the band's current booking agency sticks them in such wanting places. But I get ahead of myself. I have been a fan for two decades and this was my first Simple Minds concert, ever. Here's what happened.

It's An Easy Show
We took our places in the line formed at the door. Our two friends from Annapolis, Depeche Mode aficionados both, appeared after parking the car, said hi, and got in line too. I was curious about everybody else in line, but there wasn't much chance to talk or mingle. Everybody looked pretty dour, likely due to the damp heat and the locale. While we waited, talking, joking, excited, a man appeared at the tour bus whose door was right next to us. He knocked, and a roadie greeted him and let him in, closing the door behind him. Though I only saw him from the back, there was no mistake. "Sunil," I said, turning to my cousin and pointing at the door, "that was Mel Gaynor." Sunil beamed. Not for the last time that night.

Up On The Mezzanine
After getting in and wandering around letting our eyes adjust to the darkness and buying drinks from the bemulleted woman at the floor-level bar, we took our perch on the stage-left mezzanine, where we waited for an hour and a half while recorded music played. I was surprised to find myself nervous with a painful sympathy for the band. I felt a little sick sitting there with the other five guys. Look at how sparsely the floor is filled. Look at how small is the lighting rig. I have heard stories of disappointment with other American dates. Will this be one more? What if the sound is awful, or the mics start feeding back? Or worse, what if the band are unhappy, or the audience reacts poorly? And why aren't they coming on until 10:30? That's not so promising now is it. I discarded the half-full tumbler of Coke and heaved a sigh. Oh why did I drag the guys out here?

Stand Back. Get Back
At 10:32 EDT all my fears evaporated in a flash. The 'headlights' on the audience went off, some colored lights doused the yet unmanned stage, and there was that thrumming, throbbing introduction music that gives you the feeling a mighty locomotive will shortly arrive at the station. I stood up and moved to the rail. My friends followed. I did not know how the set would list but I knew the opener was a 20-year-old anthem you may have heard, called New Gold Dream. The crowd below on the floor was giving off let's call it a vibe.

Off in a dark corner I spotted a stagehand's flashlight go on, pointing at the steps leading to the stage. The audience began to cheer. My own eyes, ears, and mouth opened wide and I joined in the collective grin. And then suddenly as though by magic there were Simple Minds, looking as rugged and confident and handsome as rocks that hang over the sea. It was no act. There before us was the fast train, steaming at the station, doors wide open. Standing up happy and healthy in the capitol of America for the first time in a long time. Simply unbelievable. At least one of us must have rubbed his eyes in disbelief. All five of the band were grinning broadly. And as we would see, they would continue to do so for the next two hours.

Promises Kept. Miracles Delivered
The thrumming intro faded and after a dramatic silence, Andy Gillespie's first joyous hymnal chords launched that celestial bullet train, the first of 20 sonic blasts. Though it follows the release of the new studio album Cry, the Floating World setlist deliberately reacquaints the band with this audience, whose long waits and diminishing hopes had lately become a singular ache. On the brunt end of the bleak fickle indifferent tasteless current popular music scene's cruel derision, the same one, ironically, in which U2 can do no wrong, we American and Canadian fans are often relegated to ordering the band's work through Internet merchants. It included many of their most popular songs, and avoided explanations by omitting anything from Neapolis and of course Secrets. This was an American audience. As expected, Jim introduced the band during an interval of Ghostdancing. This tour's lovely, sparse rendition of Belfast Child draws a few frowns for its brevity, but consider the poignancy of having just one song performed only by the nucleus of Burchill & Kerr. Jim didn't get chatty with the audience, but remained visibly in high spirits with the rest of the band, mentioning after one setpiece that they had not played Washington DC in seven years. Don't we know it. He shared his hope that it would not be so long next time, which was met with cheers. What the set list represents is reassurance and hope, and the guys' confident ownership of the catalog, to the elemental fun of rock music. We shared in joy as a flame that nearly died in the grungy 1990s took oxygen once again.

Sound In 16 Cities
As you did, I think we helped it. Every song was a gift unwrapped, and there were three pieces of Cry: Spaceface, One Step Closer, and in the encore, New Sunshine Morning. While I had never experienced the band live, I have heard their recordings, and I think you will agree that on this tour, the performances were much tighter than they had been in the 1990s. If I have any disappointments, they are sparse and minuscule. The lighting rig could have been greater, but it was a small venue after all and whomever was working the lights did a fine job. Charlie's guitar could often have been higher in the mix, so we could at least hear him during say Theme for Great Cities or his extended solo in Sanctify Yourself.

Yet there is nothing to forgive. This could be the windup for the next tour, for which I have some hopes. I hope they are as happy as they seemed. I hope the same lineup returns. I hope they open with Sugar, their instantly recognizable radio hit. There was no trepidation in the way the band delivered each song during this show. It was all confidence and pleasure, which was wonderful to see, fists aloft and bootheels kicking, ears and eyes wide open. My cousin and I concurred that in addition to the lightman, whomever was producing the live sound did a great job. Can't be easy, with consecutive venues so diverse. I'm a fan and here's my editorial: I want this band to go into a studio and produce a record with this very sound. Each song was, intelligently, a clean, direct, compact version with sharp edges. While the guys may hopefully shift the focus to more recent music on future tours, this is exactly what the songs, what the fans, and what Simple Minds needed, right now.

This Is Your Band
Remarkable is the effect on my two Depeche Mode friends. They were stunned, and later remarked to me on the way home at what friendly gents seem Simple Minds. I'm gratified to hear this kind of thing, especially after such initial nervousness, which now feels ridiculous, that they would somehow come up short. I always hear this praise from journalists too, and I believe it. I have it on good authority that Mel's drumsticks and Charlie's pick were given to Karen, a grateful percussionist fan at floor level. Artifacts and a gesture she will surely not soon forget.

My two friends were drawn to the show out of sheer curiosity at my enjoyment of the band, which they know has spanned years. Decades. With the rest of us, they watched in delight as the band came stage front, took a bow, shook hands, and gave away their drum sticks, guitar picks, and sweaty towels. Now that's charm. One friend proposed the nearby Eddie Duffy sign our ticket stubs. He acquiesced. Eddie surely seems, as many fans have observed, a darned nice guy, and a very accessible one.

"Eddie!" I yelled down to him, and got his attention, "You did a great job! Thank you! Come back soon!" He put his hands together at me, nodded his thanks, and gave me a thumbs up. My friend took my pen, hooked it to the ticket stub, and let it fall down to him from the mezzanine. I laughed in delight but also at the flashback to a place I had never been. The story goes, in order to get their friends into a club in Glasgow on one ticket, one of the fellows would put it into a cigarette packet and drop it out the window to the waiting future Mindster.

Star Light, Star Bright
Scotland always meant melancholy, pointed out Charlie during the recent magazine interview, and if the music of Simple Minds has always been ethereal, hymnal, and colored in muted hues, then what I did not expect to find was the band's sense of humor. Evidently the high spirits didn't start with the show. On a piece of Mel's equipment was what looks like a page from a magazine, the movie poster for Spinal Tap. Off one of Andy's keyboards hung the Irish flag. We have seen the photo of Eddie performing in a Glasgow Celtic sweater. In addition to cracking wise about the complexity of the sing-along bit of Don't You, Jim propsed near the end of the set, "Ok, let's start again from the beginning... Uh, no!" And I was afraid the band would be uncomfortable? Simply ridiculous.

The consensus is no secret. We want this band to come back and play across the United States, to play more dates across Canada, and to play better venues everywhere. Someone in the Community said it first. Forgive me for losing his name, but he nailed it. Popular musical culture encourages you to feel angry, unhappy, and paranoid. Its stultifying effect keeps you from thinking too deeply and all too often from feeling. Against this background maybe it is no surprise why the Minds have such a hard time getting record companies, who sell the stuff, to take them seriously. Truly, this pained world needs the warmth, joy, strength, and hope of Simple Minds far more than Simple Minds need us.

Thank you, Eddie, Andy, Mel, Charlie, and Jim. Here's to seeing you over here again soon.

Lawrence Devadason

Tribute Album Update

The final track listing of the tribute album is :

1. Scar by Simon Hayward
2. New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84) by The Echoing Green
3. Seeing Out the Angel by Piston Picnique
4. Oh Jungleland by The Enflamed
5. Someone Somewhere In Summertime by Blow Up
6. Alive and Kicking by Band for the Tribes
7. She's A River by Flash Cube
8. Hypnotised by Youringa
9. Life In A Day by Basic Idea
10. The American by Meatboy
11. Hunter And The Hunted by Sjoblom
12. Waterfront by The Dissidents
13. Don't You (Forget About Me) by Thrust
14. 70 Cities as Love Brings the Fall by Hayward vs. Fronzek

It has been featured on Billy Sloan's and Todd Richards' radio shows, and received positive feedback from Jim.

A freebie version of The American can be found here

The album will be released in August.

More information and ordering details can be found at:

Or e-mail:
Mike Simpson

Billy Sloan recently played two tracks from the tribute album on the 7th July. New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84) and Seeing Out The Angel were both aired.

He also played Sly Silver Sly's version of Face In The Sun (which is called OK Lonely?).

It seems that the production company responsible for filming the band in Sicily weren't sufficiently organised in time, and the band felt that they weren't prepared, so the shoot was cancelled.

Other venues have been partially filmed, and this footage may be used in the future.

Therefore the release of a DVD has been postponed.

The next part of Todd Richards' chat with Jim have been uploaded.

In this part of the interview, they discussed the DVD (now postponed), touring the USA, how INXS were doing and the death of John Entwistle.

Jim also mentioned that Virgin had reissued the entire back catalogue, and that the singles were going to be reissued in a new format. The first news of the remastering has already filtered out.

Todd's interview with Jim can be found here.

Virgin are reissuing remastered editions of the band's first studio albums on the 30th September.

Each album will be released in two formats. The first is a straight reissue of the remastered album on CD. The second, which is a limited edition, will also be packaged in a miniature reproduction of the original album artwork.

Unfortunately it doesn't seem that extra tracks, sleeve notes, or additional artwork will be included.

An it will be interesting to see the limited editions of New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84) and Sparkle In The Rain as they had unique artwork - a miniature reproduction of the album sleeve would be a step backwards.

Further Virgin have again lost the opportunity to issue Sister Feelings Call as a separate CD.

Here's the release details from an on-line site. Note that the prices are in US dollars:

Life In A Day REMASTERED, CD $17.99
Country: UK. Release Date: 30-Sep-02

Life In A Day MINI SLEEVE, CD $19.99
Limited edition, remastered and packaged in a miniature reproduction of the original album art.
Country: UK. Release Date: 30-Sep-02

Real To Real Cacophony REMASTERED, CD $17.99
Country: UK. Release Date: 30-Sep-02

Real To Real Cacophony MINI SLEEVE, CD $19.99
Limited edition, remastered and packaged in a miniature reproduction of the original album art.
Country: UK. Release Date: 30-Sep-02

Empires And Dance REMASTERED, CD $17.99
Country: UK. Release Date: 30-Sep-02

Empires And Dance MINI SLEEVE, CD $19.99
Limited edition, remastered and packaged in a miniature reproduction of the original album art.
Country: UK. Release Date: 30-Sep-02

Sons And Fascination REMASTERED, CD $17.99
Country: UK. Release Date: 30-Sep-02

Sons And Fascination MINI SLEEVE, CD $19.99
Limited edition, remastered and packaged in a miniature reproduction of the original album art.
Country: UK. Release Date: 30-Sep-02

New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84) REMASTERED, CD $17.99
Country: UK. Release Date: 30-Sep-02

New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84) MINI SLEEVE, CD $19.99
Limited edition, remastered and packaged in a miniature reproduction of the original album art.
Country: UK. Release Date: 30-Sep-02

Sparkle In The Rain REMASTERED, CD $17.99
Country: UK. Release Date: 30-Sep-02

Sparkle In The Rain MINI SLEEVE, CD $19.99
Limited edition, remastered and packaged in a miniature reproduction of the original album art.
Country: UK. Release Date: 30-Sep-02

Monster reached #67 in the UK charts. It could've achieved a better showing if the CD had appeared - apparently it was cancelled for some reason. (A picture of it appeared in an NME review).

This makes the CD promos more collectable. See the archives for more information on those.

And more remixes are available on the 2x12" promotional pack:
1. Club mix
2. S.Leger's Monster remix
3. C.Castelli remix
4. Liquid People vs Mckendrick
5. Kidstuff Take The Helm
6. S.Leger's Monster dub
7. Liquid Metal Mix
Defected Records DFECT49DJ
2x12" promo in custom sleeve.

Among those who run house music, half and idea is often hailed as a stunning sonic revolution - as opposed to rock music, where a quarter of an idea reheated from 20 years ago usually does the trick. Hence this 'buzz chart' smash. What is this life-changing masterpiece? A little dinky synth sampled from Changeling by 80s stadium electroclashers Simple Minds, looped around a walloping four-four beat. Bosh bosh, lovely job, an inoffensive toe-tapper and just about dull enough to be a huge hit.



Those flying on Cathay Pacific from Hong Kong back to London can hear an interview with Jim Kerr and Paul Sexton plus a selection of five tracks - all from Cry except for Waterfront.

Viejle, Denmark, Hornstrup Kirkeby (Green Concert) (19/07/02) was cancelled. Heavy rain turned the venue into a mud bath.

On the plus side, Simple Minds will be playing a free concert on the 17th August in Bilbao, Spain (a substitution for Bryan Adams). This is part of the City Festival Concert celebrations and will kick of at 12:00PM.

Chuck Norris Reassessed

Last month at London's ICA, New York's DJ Spinbad and Shoreditch bootleg boys Crackin' Skullz brought tacky action flicks and turntablism together in a tribute to original tough guy Chuck Norris. Here Spinbad explains how they matched kickin' club cuts with highlights from Chuck's kicking oeuvre.

Breaker! Breaker! (1977)
Texan track driver-cum-karate ace Chuck kicks corrupt cop butt. In a corral. Yee-hah!

Tune: Simple Minds Don't You (Forget About Me).

Spinbad says:: "Revenge, denim, drunken bad guy, a horse and a slow-mo punch up - this scene's got it all. It's so badly shot and acted, Simple Minds just seemed right. The audience loved it, which doesn't say much for them.

The Face

A Simple Minds reference was spotted at the end of Futurama on Sky One last Sunday. In the episode The Luck Of The Fryish, Fry's brother found a copy of The Breakfast Club soundtrack and Simple Minds' Don't You (Forget About Me) played out the show.

One reader has a copy of Phunk Investigation's Sex Appeal. He wrote that if they had used a Simple Minds sample then it's difficult to recognise in the club or dub mix.

However the label reads:
"Special thanks to D. Maggiorana, N. Nicita,S. Maggiorana, D. Tignino & Pat Legato from Lovebyte, Jim Kerr (Simple Minds) and S. Maiolino."

Interesting - can anyone shed any further light on this?

Monster by Liquid People vs Simple Minds has finally been released with two 12" singles appearing in the shops last Monday. Strangely, the CD has yet to appear.

Monstermental is the instrumental version, which has received the most airplay. For those who are a little wary of remixes, purchase the dark blue copy (Defected DFECT49), which features the versions of the song closest to Changeling. (Or wait for the CD).

Liquid People vs Simple Minds: Monster
A1. Monstermental (Original Instrumental)
B1. Monstermental (Kidstuff Take The Helm)
B2. Monster (Liquid Metal Mix)
Defected DFECT49
12" in dark blue picture sleeve.

Liquid People vs Simple Minds: Monster
A1. Monster (Sebastien Leger's Monster Remix)
A2. Monster (Sebastien Leger's Monster Dub)
B1. Monster (Cricco Castelli Remix)
Defected DFECT49R
12" in light blue picture sleeve.

Two promos from the Cry Remix single have now been added to the discography.

First is the white-label 12" single which features the Phunk Investigation remixes. This features the same track list as the first of the two 12" pressings by Absolutely.

Second is a CDR actate of the same tracks from Eagle. It isn't known why Eagle are circulating these songs - perhaps they're being considered for a forthcoming release.

More information is here.

Billboard Review of Cry

For many, the mere mention of 1980s music conjures up visions of The Cure, Depeche Mode, U2, and INXS. Simple Minds can also be counted among that pack, but unlike its peers, the band -- while successful throughout Europe -- has been dead-legged in the American market for a good 15 years. A stateside tour with the aforementioned, but now re-vamped, post-Michael Hutchence INXS could boost the band's North American status, but even if it doesn't, Jim Kerr and Charlie Burchill (the only original members of Simple Minds remaining) should be proud of the largely solid Cry.

Evoking the band's most successful album (1985's Once Upon A Time) out of the starting gate, the title cut houses well-crafted synthesizer bits, a memorable guitar line, and Kerr's appealing and familiar voice. If there's little originality in Spaceface, which swipes from a certain Irish outfit's 2001 hit Elevation both musically and lyrically ("Talking to the stars, no time for idle wars / big on aviation and love's levitation,") the song's chorus is one epic hook that isn't easily forgotten. When Kerr and Burchill aren't drawing on the past or their one-time peers, they're looking to the club scene for inspiration. And by doing so, the Minds lose points. One Step Closer is an absurdly formulaic techno exercise, while Disconnected is packaged as outdated, tepid disco pop. Luckily, the affable laid-back rocker Lazy Lately and the big brilliant ballad New Sunshine Morning, correct matters, finding the band returning to the sound of its finest album, 1984's Sparkle in the Rain.

Pulling from different branches of the rock tree for its first batch of new material in seven years, Simple Minds may suffer from an identity crisis and an occasional lack of originality, but the record's strong points well overpower the few weak moments. Which means fans of the group's '80s heyday will have little trouble reconnecting with Simple Minds via Cry.

John D. Luerssen
18th June, 2002

There was recently excitement about an interview with Mel Gaynor, published on the official site. It seemed that Mel was hinting a return to the UK, Europe and the USA later this year.

However, his statement was ambigious. And, taken with the fact that the interview took place after the Glasgow gig (17th May), it could be read that he was talking about the current tour.

Here's the quote:
"Well, we plan to tour up until the end of July, then take a break, with possibly some more dates from October. This will include the UK, then Europe, and after Europe we go off to the States, then see how it goes. We'll probably go back to the States at the end of the year, before working on another new album early next year - then go off to promote that.."

The second sentence is ambiguous. Does it refer to the tour up to July, or the dates from October onwards?

As I read it, they will tour up to the end of July, including the UK, Europe and then the States. Then, after a break, they'll probably go back to the States.

The other interpretation is equally valid.

So, jury's out on that one. All that could be concluded is the possibility of a second US tour at the end of the year. Perhaps a little like the Christmas Shows they did in 1994?

Todd's broadcast of 18 hours of continous Simple Minds was a huge success, and he interviewed Jim during the later part of the show.

The first ten minutes of the interview has now been transcribed here.

Important points in this part of the interview included:

1. Jim won't confirm Mel's comments about extra tour dates in the later part of this year.
2. The US leg of the tour was just 'dipping their toe' in the water. Simple Minds will be back.
3. The live DVD will be released in three months time. This puts it around September or October.
4. The new studio album is being partly recorded in sound checks in Europe. Most of the songs were written during the Cry sessions, and continuity can be heard with that album. "Keeping the electronic thing, still very focused songs, maybe a little more dynamic, a little more rock" - Jim.
5. Spaceface has been remixed by Stonebridge. This will receive a commercial release.

The Spaceface single will be released in Belgium on the 15th July.

Copies of the New Sunshine Morning varient (as released in Germany and Italy) have finally started to appear on on-line record stores.

The remix album, originally planned for this month, has been delayed until September.

"I just heard a great remix today of Spaceface. It's incredible. Which was e-mailed - which was MP3ed out from Scandinavian outfit called Stonebridge. It's really, really great." - Jim Kerr

"How cool was that? I'm amazed at this reaction. When you speak to Jim next, tell him I've been a big fan of theirs since the 80's, and always wanted to remix something of theirs. Also, I am one guy (not a team) from Stockholm, Sweden.
Thanks for this, made my week!
" - Stonebridge.

Stonebridge was working on a Phunk Investigation remix of Spaceface. It is expected that Simple Minds Vs. Phunk Investigation will be released on Absolutely Records.

Incidentally had copies of the 12" promo of the Cry remixes up for grabs. Worth checking out.

Here's one we all missed. Phunk Investigation's Sex Appeal, released in 2001, featured a Simple Minds sample. Which sample? Don't know at the moment. It was released on 12" (on the DW Boys/Bustin' Loose label) but is proving difficult to find.

The Jones Beach was a memorable show for the weather. A tornado touched down about 50-60 miles from the venue, and there was quite a bit of lightning in the middle of the set, and prior to INXS's set. Jim was holding back laughter for most of She's A River as the rain became torrential i.e. "A river in front of me!". (A pity it wasn't Waterfrront).

An instrumental version of One Step Closer has been played before some of the US shows. This isn't Where Is The Max by Planet Funk, but an instrumental of Simple Minds version.

Unfortunately, due to a slightly late start, the set-list had to be trimmed at Toronto - and the band weren't too happy about that.

The Irish gigs look doubtful. Simple Minds were trying to book two nights at The Point in Dublin and were looking to play on the Miss Saigon Stage. Unfortunately negotiations broke down. The band are looking at other venues.

There will be extra gigs in northern Spain in August.

Simple Minds will be joining Iggy Pop, The Stanglers and The Sugababes for the "Rock On Rock" festival on the Croatian island of Krk on the 4th August.

Tickets can be reserved from (although there's nothing there at the moment). Keep checking it.

Friends Reunited allows old schoolfriends to track each other down by registering your details in their database. There's also a section for "Famous Pupils", so what better than to check out what Jim and Charlie's fellow classmates were saying about them.

Very little, as it turns out, but a handful of entries reveals an insight into the goings-on at Holyrood Catholic School in the late seventies. For example:

1977 - Charlie Burchill. Added by Martin Cotter.
"First person I spoke to at Holyrood, who said 'ma name's Charlie Bubble'; went on to do two notable things, one (accidentally) put my head thru a window, and 2 become guitarist in Simple Minds."
Uncharacteristicly violent behaviour from the normally cheerful guitar player. But what about Jim?

1977 - Jim Kerr. Added by Kieran Fallon.
"Lead singer with Simple Minds.".
Interesting, but I think we knew that one already. However, Frank comes to the rescue:

1978 - Jim Kerr. Added by Frank Gilbride.
"Told by the headie he wouldn't make it in the music world, but then looked what happened."
There you go. If Jim had taken his headmaster's advice, he'd still be a plumber today.

Friends Reunited: Great site, dreadful graphics.

More remixes to look out for are:

  • Goldreamer by DJ T. This is the mix of New Gold Dream which everyone has been waiting for. With newly recorded vocals by Jim, it is out on the small independent Y2K. However, two majors are interesting in a larger scale release. In the meantime, Stevie Kerr on Beat 106FM has been playing it nightly.

  • Gold Dream by Gold Dream. It's been out on Rise Records in Italy (Rise 144-12L) - not much known about this one.

  • Sex Appeal by Phunk Investigation. This has already been mentioned above.

  • Spaceface by Simple Minds Vs. Phunk Investigation. Hopefully this remix of Spaceface (with Stonebridge lending a hand) will be out soon on Absolutely Records.

  • The Things I Can Do by Jeremy Sylvester. This samples Don't You (Forget About Me).

  • The Darkness also by Jeremy Sylvester (obviously a fan!) includes the sampled intro of This Is Your Land.

The correct track listing of the tribute album Swimming Towards The Sun has been added to the news section for the 28th May.

Mike Simpson still needs more orders to meet the costs for the first batch. There has been a little confusion about this project - these albums will be professionally pressed as silver CDs with full artwork. Please help by supporting it.

Full contact information and details are available in the 28th May section.

Simple Minds Radio Marathon - TODAY! ONLINE SIMULCAST!

"Greetings All,
I just wanted to take the time to remind everyone about "Some Sweet Day 2002 - The Simple Minds Marathon". I'm hosting the 18 hour event at WBWC 88.3 FM The Sting in Cleveland, Ohio USA., from 7am -1am EST.

We're in the works to have Mr. Kerr call in - hopefully we'll know more by the start of the show - keep an eye out on the online flyer at:

If you have any requests send them along via email at or phone them in at 440-826-2187. My thanks to all the SM fans out there who make it so rewarding to produce a show like this - I can't wait!

See you on the airwaves"
Todd R.: Host "SSD 2002"

The event will be broadcast over the net. You will need RealAudio and the streams can be picked up via

The first of the co-headlining gigs with INXS took place on the 24th June at the Beacon Theatre in New York. Simple Minds received top billing and took to the stage second.

Both bands played for around 75 minutes, including encores.

Other gigs with INXS will be at Wantaugh, NY (27th June), Holmdel, NJ (28th June) and Detroit, MI (3rd July).

Set-lists of some US gigs have been uploaded to the tour section.

More concert dates have also been added to the list. After the gig in Sicily, Simple Minds will be playing at various festivals around Europe. They will be visiting Switzerland, Denmark (for a series of Green Concert dates), Italy, France, Monaco and Belgium. It has also been mentioned that they might visit Ireland, but nothing definite has been announced.

This has done the rounds on the various bulletin boards and mailing lists, but it's worth mentioning here.

The main riff of Cry is the same as the opening riff of The Matthew Good Band's Indestructable. But don't take my word for it, as you can listen to it here.

The new single, Spaceface, was released on Monday.

A disappointing two track single, it features the album cut of Spaceface, backed with New Sunrise, the acoustic version of New Sunshine Morning which was featured on Billy Sloan's show before the tour kicked off.

A remix of the title track by Liquid People failed to appear.

In some European countries (definitely Germany and perhaps Italy), New Sunshine Morning is being released as the single. It features the same B-side, but different artwork and catalogue number.

For the low-down on formats, promos and more, then click here.

Disconnected has been pencilled in as the third single by Eagle.

Interestingly very limited CD acetates of the Phunk Investigation remix of Cry have also been issued by Eagle. So, this might indicate that the potential third single may have a few more surprises on it.

Simple Minds have just started the US leg of The Floating World Tour.

The set-list has shortened, with only one encore. For example, the set at the Celebrity Theater, Phoenix (17th June) was:

1. New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84)
2. Speed Your Love To Me
3. One Step Closer
4. Love Song
5. Big Sleep
6. See The Lights
7. Glittering Prize
8. Ghostdancing
9. Spaceface
10. She's A River
11. Someone Somewhere (In Summertime)
12. Let There Be Love
13. Waterfront
14. Dont You (Forget About Me)
15. I Travel
16. Promised You A Miracle
17. Sanctify Yourself
18. Alive And Kicking

"A BRILLIANT SHOW! For many of us, it was the first time seeing the band as they haven't played Arizona since April 1986!

Celebrity Theater is 'in the round' and features a revolving 360 degree stage surrounded by 1200 seats. The front row is within 3 feet of the stage, which encourages band/audience interaction. However, a cadre of slinky dancing girls from the audience joined the band onstage during She's A River, Let There Be Love and Don't You (Forget About Me), before the band called on the venue's security to keep them off-stage. Even the oft-smiling bassist Eddie Duffy was visibly 'irked' when the convoy of blondes returned during Dont You (Forget About Me) and crowded him, Charlie and Jim as they ended the primary set. Even as they played drums and keyboards, Mel and Andrew got psuedo-strip club massages by the roving band of Scottsdalian lapdancers!"

Marc Pearsall

Despite the release date shown on the 2-track CDR acetates of Monster, Liquid People vs. Simple Minds will now be released on the 24th June.

The two-track acetate features the instrumental version of Monster, which was the first circulated and played.

The video has also been broadcast (the guys DJing at a party) on RI:SE (UK morning show) and MTV UK.

The show at Amsterdam tomorrow will be webcasted live, and some select tracks will be kept online for some time afterwards. To watch the show, then click here.

Photos of the French concert can be viewed here. Whilst pictures from their Italian shows can be found here.

An exclusive interview with Jim can be found on U2actung's website. The english translation can be found here.

The lead singer of Kane was recently interviewed on Dutch television, where he said that he was planning a song with Simple Minds.

The tour is continuing into August. Simple Minds will be playing the Marktrock festival in Belgium on the 14th. For more information click here.

18th May

So it´s time for the last of the german shows, in Erfurt.

The Messehalle is surely not built with much thought to music, so it is a pleasant surprise to discover that the sound is excellent, at least where I am seated tonight. And here is another one of those wonderful audiences, who seem to listen intently to all the music.

Simple Minds are such a professional band, that it is of course possible that in reality they play equally good every night, and it´s just the audience´s reactions that create my feelings of the show. But the band is of course affected by the behaviour of the audience too!

The set list is the same as the night before, in Emden. In Ghostdancing Eddie gets more underwear, and passes it on to Mel just like in Berlin.

Without doubt, Belfast Child is extraordinary tonight. Jim seems to be totally present in every word. It carries over into Waterfront. I´ve always been fascinated by Jim's body language and it´s variations: tonight he moves precisely like he does in the video for Waterfront! Amazing to see. Charlie´s moves simply transfix me, always.

In She´s A River Jim gets lost in the lyrics and improvises. Then things seem to go as planned, and finally it all comes to a close with Alive And Kicking. It has been a wonderful night.

And it has been a wonderful tour, too. To avoid becoming "their own tribute band" (Jims expression) from now on they surely must keep up the long, ever-changing set list, try to stay away from festival gigs with their limitations, and challenge the audience with new material!

See you all wonderful people, band and audience, on the next tour!

Hans-Olof Andersson

Spaceface, the forthcoming Eagle single, has been put back to the 17th June.

Promos of the German varient, New Sunshine Morning, have started to circulate. These two-track maxi-singles are the commercial varient with promotional stickers. The artwork is different from the Spaceface release, featuring the band photograph from the cover of Cry (but not reversed), repeated at smaller sizes across the sleeve.

New Sunshine Morning : Eagle EAGXS 233
1. New Sunshine Morning (3:34)
2. New Sunrise (4:16)
Picture CD in slimline jewel case.

(New Sunrise is the Billy Sloan session of New Sunshine Morning.)

Swimming Towards the Sun, the first ever tribute album to the greatest band, Simple Minds, is about a month from release. To see the cover art (also shown right), go to:

In order to raise money for the initial 1000 disc run, I need to organize a pre-release sale. The price with postage in the U.S.A. is $16.50. The price outside of the USA is $18.50. Sorry it is a bit pricey. But with 14 tracks all recorded by independent artists, the expenses were quite high and need to be reimbursed. The benefits of pre-ordering include:

-Help make the album a reality. Without pre-orders, we can't afford to release it.
-Be guaranteed of getting a copy of an album that might be limited to 1000 copies.
-Get a bonus sampler CD containing alternative rock tracks by several independent bands.

Also, when your payment is received, you will be given an address for downloading the cover version of The American in CD quality. In the meantime, you can listen to samples of the album at:

The entire album can be heard here in fair quality (32 kbps). You will need at least a 56K modem to keep up. The downloadable version of The American will sound MUCH better.

You can send payment to me using one of two methods:
1) Send payment electronically with a credit card using PayPal ("). Send the money to

2) Send a check or money order (payable to Eternal Hope Sanctuary) to:

Eternal Hope Sanctuary
Attn: Tribute Album
3765 Georgia Ln.
Idaho Falls, ID 83406

In addition to paying for the recording costs, I hope to raise some money using this project for my wife's charity, Eternal Hope Sanctuary. If you are interested in learning more about this charity, let me know. I just don't want to bore people who aren't interested.

Thanks for your interest in this album. Believe me, everyone will be very pleased with it. Some really brilliant musicians have worked on it, including a few pros. E-mail me if you have any questions.

Refunds will, of course, be given if I fail to pre-sell enough copies.

Mike Simpson

Swimming Towards The Sun
1. Scar - Simon Hayward/Groove Machine
2. Seeing Out the Angel - Piston Technique
3. Soul Crying Out - Go Deep
4. New Gold Dream - The Echoing Dream
5. Someone Somewhere in Summertime - Blow Up
6. Hunter and the Hunted - Sjoblam
7. The American - Meatboy
8. Oh Jungleland - The Enflamed
9. Alive and Kicking -Band for the Tribes
10. Hypnotised - Younringa
11. She's a River - Flash Cube
12. Waterfront - The Dissidents
13. Don't You (Forget About Me) - Thrust

Please support this project. I've heard Scar and Someone Somewhere In Summertime, and definitely want to hear more. So I will be getting my money off to Mike prompt! - Simon

17th of May

In the small town of Emden the audience, in a sports hall outside town, give off a very pleasant feeling. Smiles everywhere before the show. Kane are very good, and tonight the sound is perfect both in volume and clarity.

And the playing is more sensitive. In Big Sleep and Glittering Prize Mel has a gentle swing to his drumming, just what those two songs need.

The set list is changed a bit, and Hypnotised and She´s A River are back after not being played for a week or so.

I don´t know what more to say about this show...I hope Eddie Duffy can take the very tough tour schedule! A friend of mine, also following the German leg of the tour, thought he looked like a zombie when the green light was on him! (No offence Mr Duffy!) But is he happy to be playing in Simple Minds. Who wouldn´t be!

Hans-Olof Andersson

Many thanks to Moises for the photo of the Spanish poster and Jim.

Monster by Liquid People will be released on 10th June on Defected Records.

It will be released as two 12"s (DFECT 49) and one CD (DFECT 49CDS). Both will be packed with remixes. The radio edit now features a vocal (not the original lyrics) so it's no longer an instrumental.

The Sebastien Leger mix has been featured on Pete Tong's Radio One show.

Two CDR promos are circulating (one is shown below, the other features two tracks), along with two 12" pressings (featuring different mixes).

Liquid People vs. Simple Minds
1. Radio Edit
2. Liquid People Club Mix
3. Sebastien Leger's Monster Remix
4. Sebastien Leger's Monster Dub
5. Kidstuff Take The Helm
6. Cricco Castelli Remix
7. J Majik Remix
Defected DEFCT49
(Promotional green CDR with black typed titles in paper typed sleeve.)

The double 12" promotional set (DFECT49DJ) includes Liquid People Club Mix, Sebastien Leger's Monster Remix, Cricco Castelli Remix, Liquid People vs. Mckendrick, Kidstuff Take The Helm, Sebastien Leger's Monster Dub and the Liquid Metal Mix.

If you can't wait for Monster, and don't collect the promos, then you can pick it up on The Ministry Of Sound's 21st Century Disco which features the Liquid People Club Mix.

Simple Minds are also featured on another compilation, CreamCollect's Baleric, which includes Theme For Great Cities.

(Thanks to Barry Wink for info.)

The great lost album, Our Secrets Are The Same, may finally be getting its release on EMI, albeit four years late.

Simple Minds and EMI are talking again.

The album will probably be remixed (I've heard it was never properly finished), and argumented with new tracks (recorded at the same time for B-sides and bonuses of proposed singles).

See the the album's page for more information.

More surprises on the tour. Theme For Great Cities and Once Upon A Time made their tour debutes at Utrecht, and Face In The Sun returned in Paris.

16th May

Under a big tent-roof outside the Museumhalle in Bonn, Simple Minds perform a deafeningly loud concert. They are not using their own sound system tonight, neither their own light show. There is trouble with the sound in many of the songs.

Up intil the eighth song, Love Song, the show doesn´t really take off. Tonight Love Song is really great. Ghostdancing is, believe it or not, great every night.

And This Is Your Land is also good tonight! Come A Long Way is still rather tentative. Tonight Sugar has been moved to the encores, the other ones being the predictable ones.

Why do people whistle during songs? If they hate the song maybe they could be bit more subtle and simply be silent? There are whistlers at most German shows and they should be tied to a leash somewhere far away from other people.

The Bonn gig was rather good, despite the sound problems, and taking so long to really take off. But by now it´s really time for a much more sensitive night, both concerning what comes from the stage, and from the audience.

Hans-Olof Andersson

CDRs of the forthcoming Spaceface single have started to appear (this image was uploaded to eBay).

The two track CDR features the single's artwork and Spaceface backed with New Sunshine. The latter is the acoustic version of the song, first debuted on Billy Sloan's radio show.

Commercial copies of the German varient are also starting to circulate. These pair New Sunshine Morning with New Sunshine. Oddly, this is packaged as a maxi-CD (in a slimline jewelcase), but only includes two tracks.

In the UK, the double 12" release of the Cry remixes will be available at Amato Disco, Hard To Find, Lasgo, Black Market and Vinyl Addiction.

The record isn't available directly from Absolutely Records nor their distributors Level One (

Those in other countries should seek the record from specialist dance retailers or independent record shops.

Absolutely Records in Italy will be releasing a Cry Remix single which includes five new remixes of the title track.

Released on the 3rd June as two 12" singles, Cry Remixes includes three remixes by Phunk Investigation and two by Tazz (also known as Simon Duffy.) Phunk Investigation have already been associated with Simple Minds producing Gloria on Neon Lights.

12" promos of the Phunk Investigation mixes have already been circulating, and have received enthusiastic play from Alan Thompson, John Kelly, Kev Hill, Stonebridge, Jt Vannelli, Coccoluto, Farfa, Chris Davies, Jeremy Haely, Jason Herd, Ian Dawes, AJ Gibson, Danny Rose and DJ Ralf.

Full tracklistings can be found here.

It isn't known if any of these remixes will appear on the forthcoming Spaceface/New Sunshine Morning releases.

13th May

I did not go to the Munich show, instead I went straight for that place in Cologne with such a great sounding name: "E-werk". The building is an old electrical power plant, hardly changed, wonderfully brutal and just the right place for a rock-club that holds maybe 1500 people.

When the band come in, it´s no doubt they are especially full of energy. Jim expresses his love for Cologne.

Jim and Mel are both especially powered. Jim soon cleans the floor with his shirt, and Mel starts doing some wild things on his drums!

The set list has by now evolved to be the same up until the eleventh track, Ghostdancing. Then comes the surprise slot: we get Sugar! Still a bit hesitant.

My opinion is that Glittering Prize is being played a bit brutally this tour, and it´s very much true tonight. It´s mostly in the drumming, but in the keyboards too.

Spaceface, the first encore, is brutal too, but the song itself is like being on drugs anyway, while of course Glittering Prize is about the clearest of days.

When they come in for the second encore, the audience don´t seem to recognize Life In A Day. That is except for one person, who starts jumping and screaming, after gasping a bit during the previous Don´t You (Forget About Me).

After that, Chelsea Girl. Then it all ends with Sanctify Yourself and Alive And Kicking. Both songs that they can hardly perform badly.

The show at the "E-werk" was intimate, intelligent, and lots, lots of fun!

Hans-Olof Andersson

For the first time this tour, the same set-list was played two nights running. Concert goers at Erfurt got the same concert as Emden.

Some Sweet Day, the Simple Minds Radio Marathon by Todd Richards, will be broadcast on June 27th this year.

This 18 hour radio program will feature the entire musical history of the band, complete with the new material from Neon Lights and Cry. In the past, Todd has also gained exclusive interviews with Jim Kerr so it's hoped that he'll pull off another exclusive.

The online flyer for the event, and all the information you'll need, can be found at

It isn't known if the marathon will be streamed over the Internet yet.

What can I say ..... thanks to all who put the energy and devotion into this marathon of Minds music! We are most flattered and full of appreciation for the encouragement that is offered to us in the knowledge of such an event that centres around our band!

Yours respectfully/Best wishes from Scotland.

Jim Kerr.

P.S. Way to go ....... Ohio!

10th May 2002

These my reviews are of course totally subjective. And from where one experiences the concert is of course very important. In Frankfurt I was at the back of the hall most of the time: in the Tempodrome in Berlin I chose to be in the first row. And was I in a wild mood.

The Tempodrome looks like a gigantic birthday cake that has barely escaped being sucked into a gigantic vacuum cleaner from above. Inside it´s a bit more normal, a good concert arena.

Support band Kane come and go. Simple Minds come on, and I´m a agitated tonight: I must confess that it´s I who scream "Play ******* brilliant tonight, I demand that!" right into Charlie´s face. He nods and we´re off.

The audience here is actually quite calm. They are relatively silent during songs, and that is good. I suppose that makes the band feel that we are not here to look at and cheer at some pop idols, we´re here to experience extraordinary music.

And my opinion is that we get to. This is the first of the German shows where I get that special feeling of the music taking over. The set lists of the shows are the same the first half, and it is in Glittering Prize, the tenth song, that happens. I hope it´s the same for everybody else.

Ghostdancing is so long and wild during this tour. This time Jims microphone breaks down, and he uses Duffy´s for a while. I think it´s also here an event with erotic implications threatens to divert the bands' attention. But Mr Duffy successfully takes care of the bra that has landed in front of him, by picking it up with his teeth (while continuing to play)and placing it on top of Mel Gaynor.

The combined Belfast Child/Waterfront works really well. This Is Your Land is becoming boring though, and it could be dropped. The band must feel so themselves, I´m sure.

What will we get for encore tonight? A surprise, please. And we do get that! Come A Long Way. Jim reads from a lyric sheet, and it works 90% right. Alive And Kicking is the final song, as on all nights, I think.

Songs I wish for: Sugar, War Babies, Night Music and Scar. That is what your most profitable customer on this tour wants. And the customer is always right, but only if they´re in the front row, of course. Or should the band play exactly what they want? What would that be, with no concern payed to promotors, or even audience expectations? I want to know that.

Hans-Olof Andersson

A Simple Minds live concert will be broadcast on Dutch Radio 2 on the 24th May at 22:00-23:00 CET. Very unlikely to be the current tour, it's probably from the archive.

Band For The Tribes will be playing live at the Limelight Club, Crewe, England on the 25th September. Admission is free as it's promoted by Carling.

More details to follow nearer the time.

In the later half of last year, there were rumours floating around that Jim had recorded vocals on a dance record, which was set for release at the end of 2001.

It turns out that it was true. Working with Planet Funk, who scored a dance hit last year with Chase The Sun, he recorded a vocal over a reworking of their Into The Max.

You don't need to work too hard to track this down. It turned up on the Cry album as One Step Closer.

Yahoo list member and contributor -1 has mixed both these songs together to create an extended hybrid. You can hear it here.

The Floating World Tour is not finishing in Sicily. The tour will continue into August, taking in some new territories. Croatia, Budapest and Monaco have been mentioned, but no confirmation and no tour dates yet.

Set-lists for Berlin, Cologne, and Hamburg have been uploaded. Sugar has been the latest surprise, the next track from Cry to be played live. The final encore at Cologne was also interesting, pairing Life In A Day and Chelsea Girl with Sanctify Yourself and Alive And Kicking. An unbelievable combination!

The set-lists can be found here.

9th May 2002

The "Jahrhunderthalle" is far outside town, and a big metal dome. It´s also far from sold out tonight; at least there is plenty of space on the floor left.

I immediately get a feeling that the audience is different to that in Bielefeld. There are fewer old T-shirts, not so much excitement in the air. And the aquostics of the place are not that great.

The set is mostly the same as in Bielefeld, except that there are fewer songs from the new album, and instead we get Big Sleep and Hypnotised.

The show goes on perfectly as planned I suppose, but I can´t help feeling that we are just not taken "higher". The audience is comparatively calm. It feels like it´s a family´s night out, and still, Mel just won´t go wild...none of the other in the band either.

When are they going to use the three ramps that Mel and Andy have their things between? Have they used them at the UK gigs? It would be so great if Charlie, Jim, and Eddie stood on them for a while: Then all of the bandmembers would be in line, and it would look just great.

Maybe it´s going to sound good recorded, but, there in the hall, at least I didn´t appreciate the Frankfurt show all that much. On to Berlin!

Hans-Olof Andersson

Italian tribute band Blow-Up will be playing live on the 19th May.

The one-hour gig will start with One Step Closer and continue with Someone Somewhere (In Summertime), Changeling, The American, Spaceface, Don't You (Forget About Me), Glory days (a song by Blow Up), Ghostdancing, Alive And Kicking and finally Belfast Child.

For more information, and persumably the Italian venue, check out Blow Up's page, or e-mail Mimmo.

Blow Up have recorded Someone Somewhere In Summertime for the forthcoming tribue album. More details about that project on Friday.

Monster by Liquid People is still TBA on Defected's release schedule but more CD-acetates have appeared, suggesting that it'll get a full scale release in the next month or so.

The single will include mixes by Kidstuff,Liquid People,J Majik, Sebastien Leger and Cricco Castelli.

For a loop of Monster, check out Their website is expected to launch soon.

The new single, released on the 10th June, will be Spaceface. Except in Germany, where New Sunshine Morning will be the lead track.

The Best Of will be released in the USA on the 4th June, followed by Cry on the 18th June.

It appears that the tour programmes have already sold out for this tour, as mentioned during the review of the concert right.

The glossy colour tour programme features a great little biography of the band, numerous quotes and pictures of the new line-up.

All the live pictures of Jim and Charlie were taken during the Good News From The Next World tour.

On the downside is a very brief discography, and some inexplicable textural shots (red walls and the like) which take up full pages.

Come A Long Way made its live debut for this tour during the encores at Berlin. Again, Jim read from a lyric sheet.

"A girl from Cologne I know, was able to get the sheet from Jim in Berlin with the text on from Come A Long Way. The text was downloaded from Dream Giver :-). I hope they will give Simon the text of the Cry album, so they still can play the songs in ten years."

Yahoo! mailing list

8th May 2002

The Bielefeld gig was very nice. The Stadthalle is a modern, multi-purpose building; especially adapted to opera, I believe. Most of the maybe 5000 visitors are on the floor, and the rest are on the balcony half-circling the hall. Good feeling right away!

But it´s sad that there are no more tour programs on sale! The merchandiser tells me they sold out in the UK.

Suport band Kane are quite good. Two guitars, no keyboards, and they are a lot louder than the Minds. But they are good.

Ten minutes to nine the wee men are on. The beginner, New Gold Dream, sounds very "German" in it´s new shape! It´s a bit oompa-oompa!

Then it´s I Travel and One Step Closer. Both competent, but it´s in the fourth song I am really uplifted. Up On The Catwalk is all magic and I think I´m not the only one singing all of the lyrics. The highlight of the night for me.

I can not go through all the songs, but we get three more from the new album: Cry,Spaceface, and New Sunshine Morning. I like Cry the most of those.

See the lights begins with a sound like from a tolling church bell. The crowd is all silent, wondering what is going on. This is Andrew Gillespie´s moment. I think he is real good. He is very different to Mark Taylor, who had much more conventional key hitting.

We get no songs from before ´81, and Love Song and The American are not very special, although the latter is of course a welcome return. Ghostdancing is revitalised though, with the guitar playing changed a bit for this tour.

Promised You A Miracle and Glittering Prize are good, but Speed Your Love To Me is almost as great as Catwalk. Charlies guitar is just heavenly, and Jim seems to enjoy it too.

I actually can´t remember the order of the songs after Catwalk, and the extras are the quite predictable ones. But I must mention that the audience all love Don´t You (Forget About Me). Everybody stand up, Scottish flags wave from the balcony, and Jim is obviously touched.

As a summary it was a good show, but I must say that Mel didn´t really go wild once, which of course he should. I think the audience should try to mentally push the band, and I didn´t feel thet happen much. But a good start for the german leg of the tour it was!

Hans-Olof Andersson

More surprises as The Floating World Tour finished up in the UK and moved on to Europe.

Promised You A Miracle made a welcome return at Bournemouth (the band spent a good hour rehearsing it during the soundcheck) whilst Chelsea Girl, not played live since the early eighties, appeared at the Royal Albert Hall gig. (Although Jim had to read from a lyric sheet).

The set lists are being updated, and will be brought up-to-date by the end of the week.

Many thanks to Jim, Charlie, Mel, Eddie and Andy for everything - cheers.

Right: Set-list for Brighton.

As reported on the 16th April, Simple Minds Vs. Liquid People looks set to be released on Defected Records soon. The song is their interepretation of Changeling which is called Monster.

7-track CD acetates of the new single have just started to circulate, so it looks like a release will occur in the next month or two.

Alternatively, instead of buying the single, you could pick it up on the forthcoming Simple Minds remix album, which will include Monster.

The other tracks aren't known yet, but the project is intended to tidy up all the loose ends.

The new single will be released on the 10th June in the UK. (Eagle EAGSX 232). Amazon are already taking orders.

It's only available as a single CD, but as a twist, two tracks have been chosen from Cry, to be released in different European countries.

As mentioned on the 16th April, a remix by Liquid People is expected to be included.

I believe that the Cry discography is complete with the addition of these two items:

A German copy of the silver Cry single. Unique as it's housed in a slimline jewelcase. The catalogue number subjects that it's some form of limited edition.

A rare one-track CD-acetate of the Cry single has also turned up.

I've already been to see the Minds at Birmingham, and will be travelling to Brighton, Bournemouth and the second night at the Royal Albert Hall. So far I've met a few readers of this site - I hope to meet more of you in the coming few days.

The band continue to surprise. Big Sleep made a welcome return at Newcastle, but the one everyone was talking about was Dead Vandals, the B-side of the Abusers single, the first song Jim and Charlie wrote together.

By the second night in Manchester, Book Of Brilliant Things and Life In A Day appeared on the set list, whilst Oh Jungleland made the encore at Nottingham.

The Intro tape sounds like a cycle of the opening rippling synths of Fluke's remix of Theme For Great Cities (which appears on the back of the UK CD of War Babies). Perhaps it should be called Fluke Loop!.

Review in the Sunday Herald.

Set lists are being collected on the tour page.

Today is 20th April 2002. You are in NEWCASTLE, CITY HALL..
Please send in the set list!

Clyde Auditorium, Glasgow, UK
18th April, 2002
Support: The Real People
Main Set: New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84) / Changeling / Up On The Catwalk / One Step Closer / Speed Your Love To Me / The American / Love Song / See The Lights / Space / Ghostdancing / She's A River / New Sunshine Morning / This Is Your Land / Someone Somewhere (In Summertime) / Belfast Child - Waterfront
Encore: I Travel / Glittering Prize / Don't You (Forget About Me)
Encore: Let There Be Love / Sanctify Yourself / Alive And Kicking

Glasgow 17/04/02

Glasgow 17/04/02

The band are opening with a new intro track. This instrumental is like static electricity with some throbbing bassy hum and goes on for about 5 minutes. There's some instrumentation with a similar but murky production (sounds like a Neapolis out-take.).

Ghostdancing is reverting to its Live In The City Of Light guise. Jim's starting to ad-lib, with the 'car pulled up' section now mentioning meeting Elvis in heaven.

Jim also does a brief Elvis impression during She's A River (as seen on the VH1 Uncut show).

The high kicks were back at the first night at Glasgow.

The band's getting tighter.

Jim started mistakenly singing Ghostdancing lyrics to I Travel. He acknowledged his mistake (under his breath) with a rather sheepish grin.

Billy Sloan was backstage at the Glasgow gig.

Bruce Findlay was spotted at the Edinburgh gig in the coffee bar. A guy with a pass came up to him: "Good evening Mr Findlay, the boy's were wondering if you are coming back stage for a drink after the show." To which Bruce replied "Of course".

Note that the date for the Taormina concert is the 26th (not the 27th as previously stated).

Next week, there's a competition on RTL2 (French radio). Each morning, between 9 and 12 o'clock, you could win places for the Olympia concert in Paris on the 21st May.

Today is 19th April 2002. Day Off/Travel

Clyde Auditorium, Glasgow, UK
17th April, 2002
Support: The Real People
Main Set: New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84) / Up On The Catwalk / One Step Closer / Spaceface / Speed Your Love To Me / The American / Love Song / See The Lights / Face In The Sun / Ghostdancing / Space / Glittering Prize / This Is Your Land / Someone Somewhere (In Summertime) / Belfast Child - Waterfront
Encore: She's A River / New Sunshine Morning / Don't You (Forget About Me)
Encore: Let There Be Love / Sanctify Yourself / Alive And Kicking

Glasgow 17/04/02

Glasgow 17/04/02

To order tickets for Taormina from

1. On the main page, look for a banner that has "TAORMINA ARTE 2002" written in it and click it.
2. On the following page under the words Simple Minds click on the underlined "Taormina, dal 6 al 30 luglio".
3. On the following page, down on the left, you will see: "26-07-2002 Taormina - Teatro Antico 21:30" and click on it.
4. On the right, you will see: "acquista on line con TicketOne - Buy on line". Click on the mouse icon.
5. On the following page, check the British flag and click it. The rest of the site is in English.

Today is 18th April 2002. You are in GLASGOW, CLYDE AUDITORIUM.
Please send in the set list!

Usher Hall, Edinburgh, UK
16th April, 2002
Support: The Real People
Main Set: New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84) / Up On The Catwalk / One Step Closer / Spaceface / Speed Your Love To Me / The American / Love Song / See The Lights / Face In The Sun / Ghostdancing / Hypnotised / Glittering Prize / This Is Your Land / Someone Somewhere (In Summertime) / Belfast Child - Waterfront
Encore: She's A River / Cry / Don't You (Forget About Me)
Encore: Let There Be Love / Sanctify Yourself / Alive And Kicking

The final show of the tour, and to be recorded for a DVD release, is Taormina on the 27th July.

This show is part of the Taormina Arte 2002 festival.

Tickets can now be purchased from

Aberdeen Music Hall

"Once upon a time………."

Simple Minds have been around for aeons now, but from once contesting the rock/pop thrown with a certain very famous and successful irish rock quartet in the 80's, their presence since has been almost non-existant. Sort of like a once top international striker getting on a bit, not quite retiring, but through a love of the game, playing now as an icon in some 3rd division league side. There are moments of genius, but never witnessed by anyone other than the local following. These players, often perceived as past their best, sometimes create the old magic, and for one short burst, we are reminded of how truly great they once were.

Simple Minds have released 3 studio albums, 1 covers album and 2 greatest hits packages in the 90's. None of these to any great critical acclaim, and with falling sales, it seems like the fans, press and record companies have all moved on, with the band being left behind to ponder where it all went wrong. It does feel like a lifetime ago we attended massive open-air stadium gigs with the MINDS, in pole position, where no band could touch them. The live gigs were truly a sense of occasion long before Madchester(sic), Seattle, Brit-Pop, and Pop Idols!. Yes, it does seem like a lifetime ago.

One thing about Jim Kerr, he's never dwelled on past glories and, as a music lover, never seems to give up having a go. The boots have not been hung up just yet. A new album Cry appears to be a quite refreshing return to form, and it appears this old player has been working extremely hard. The signs are good, a small but loyal band of followers are talking extremely positively, and one wonders what kind of performance can be delivered on the night.

This is the first date in an extensive world tour. This time it's not stadiums in the summertime, but mid-sized music halls, and a typically chilly and drizzly spring evening in Aberdeen. The hall is full and with quite a subdued atmosphere, as a mixed and varied crowd chat idally.

All at once the opening strains of an old familiar intro roars from the speakers. The crowd appear upbeat, with mixed expressions of bewilderment and happy smiles, apparent from both the young and…well, slightly older. Dark sillhouettes take to the stage to the sound of wild screams and whistles, lifting a few decibles higher as the very casual yet confident stride of Jim Kerr is seen making an entrance. The lights go up. "Well hello Aberdeen…you okay? This is New Gold Dream". A few hairs on the back of the neck raise uncontrollably, as contorted melodies ooze, twist and turn around a thunderous, rythmic pulse. This track is 20 years old.

The song draws to a close, and I can hear excited voices around me as the crowd roar their approval. The buzz is tremendous, just as a deep electric guitar riff literally cuts my kidneys in half and tears my heart apart. This is more rock based, New sunshine morning, from the new album and a laid back swirl of edgy guitar orientated momentum....until the coda, the band die and kerrs' vocal takes over the hall, "much of the story's been told, can you sympathise?, seems like a lifetime ago…" as if contemplating their own career, I get the feeling Kerr knows what others, including myself, had been thinking! But it is a new sunshine morning, a new beginning with something new to say - and its bloody Marvellous! So far, I am witnessing a coherent, fresh and re-charged Simple Minds. No pomp or bluster, but waves and walls of gorgeous sound. The high kicks and bellowing have gone, replaced with slight of hand and concentrated vocal. The band, likewise are projecting a certain coolness, albeit, this is the very first gig, and without being over-critical, there is much room for improvement. There are sometimes awkward moments for Kerr waiting for the band, at one point Kerr asks the audience "Are you ready?" to receive a great thirsty roar from the eager crowd. Laughing, he then turns to the band asking them the same question. These are minor technical hitches to be expected early days, but these didn't really detract from the show when smoothed over by an experienced front-man with a sense of humour and acute sense of timing.

Loud and vibrant, and after a symphonic, almost orchestral intro, a drum roll kick-starts and energises a pulsating, melodic track reminiscent of their better early 80's work. Its joyous, upbeat and fills the hall with a full breath of sound. Kerrs' vocal has matured into a strong, effortless croon, and floats above this distinctly rocky electro groove. Again, a new piece One step closer with simple and effective lyrics, set within a dreamy soundscape. Quite simply, this is majestic and the band appears a tight, focussed unit. Kerr is wearing a dark tailored cut trouser and white designer full zip shirt, with long collar and wide sleeves. He looks slim, healthy and slightly elegant. The band then break into some of their established classics which sound raw and edgy, yet fully dynamic. Speed your love, The American, Love song, Catwalk - and the crowd are really taking this on the chin. Love song in particular fizzing and burning with tidal waves of power.

Some of the 90's output has been re-arranged quite effectively with a very subdued, almost minimalist mix. It tends to work quite well. Songs like See the lights, War Babies and This is your land all benefit from this greatly. Mid-set however, and a guitar change from Charlie Burchill sees an outstanding Ghostdancing launched if not hurled at the crowd. Fantastic! Works really well as did the song Sanctify Yourself from the same album. The versions of Face in the sun and Disconnected from Cry are almost as per the album cut, but the production values are different. The former lying exposed, with kerrs voice resonating around the hall in a deep throaty drawl, the latter thumping with bass and reinforcing the rythmic drive.

The songs tend to be short arrangements however, very similar to the vinyl cuts. Maybe to pack all 25 numbers into a two hour set, the neat, sharp arrangements moving quickly from one to the next. A case in point would be the edited version of Belfast Child, where midway through the song, the chords change and the familiar vibrating throb of Waterfront is delivered to an ecstatic throng of heaving bodies. The acoustics at Aberdeen Music Hall are well known for being particularly poor. Not tonight! Each song filling the hall right up to an equally joyous balcony way up in the heavens. A closure to the set, the song dies away and the crowd plead for more. This is a real tease for the crowd. This song has traditionally been an opening number, signalling the start of an almost endless hail of sharp bullets of sound. Tonight, the band won't get out of here alive, and finally return to the stage for a final salvo launch.

With six numbers for encore, a surprise introduction of Space from a lost never released album, Our secrets are the same glides effortlessly. Although heavily bootlegged by fans all over the world, it appears to be completely alien to this house tonight. It's a crying shame that this may never be officially released, because it one of the best simple minds' penned tunes in years. Truly beautiful and very well received. The set closes with Alive & Kicking, and by this stage its all over, with the band disappearing into the darkness. This has been a remarkable opening show for a band, who have not toured seriously for a number of years. They return triumphantly, a little older, a little wiser and proving still ever capable of producing great music, and that old live magic. They have delivered a sterling performance, and as this tour is taken around Europe and the States, many will be reminded of how great they truly are now - and not once upon a time!

Review by "Oceanic"
Peter Carlin, Dundee, Scotland. April 15th 2002

The full set list for Aberdeen has been added below.

Most of the songs are appearing in album form.

Belfast Child is edited and merges into Waterfront. This was the subject of much rehearsing during the Edinburgh soundcheck.

The Edinburgh set list is deliberately shorter than the Aberdeen set list - perhaps they overran on the first night?

Henrik Larsson's name has been added to the list of names in Up On The Catwalk.

New Gold Dream features the numbers "Zero One", "Zero Two", "Zero Three", "Zero Four". (Jim also changed the numbers for the Gold Dreamer recording.)

The band play for just over two hours.

Mark Kerr was spotted at the mixing desk at Edinburgh.

There are two types of T-shirts: one is navy blue with Simple Minds and Claddagh on the front with the tour dates on the back, whilst the other is grey with blue sleeves but no dates. There is a lycra type T-shirt for the ladies. Tour programs cost £8 whilst mugs cost £6.

Today is 17th April 2002. You are in GLASGOW, CLYDE AUDITORIUM.
Please send in the set list!

Music Hall, Aberdeen, UK
15th April, 2002
Support: The Real People
Main Set: New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84) / New Sunshine Morning / One Step Closer / Speed Your Love To Me / The American / Love Song / Up On The Catwalk / See The Lights / Face In The Sun / Disconnected / Ghostdancing / Hypnotised / Glittering Prize / War Babies / This Is Your Land / Someone Somewhere (In Summertime) / Belfast Child - Waterfront
Encore: She's A River / Space / Don't You (Forget About Me)
Encore: Let There Be Love / Sanctify Yourself / Alive And Kicking

It's very frustrating that no-one has been able to produce the definitive set-list from the first night of The Floating World Tour. The list above is the most accurate, but misses out several Cry tracks which were played between New Gold Dream and Speed Your Love To Me.

The support in the UK is a Liverpudlian band called The Real People. Well established with nine years of history, they're definitely worth checking out.

There's full merchandise including T-shirts (Claddagh on the front and tour dates on the back), base-ball caps, fleeces and a glossy tour programme.

The tour listing is now pretty much complete. New York, USA (24/06/02) and Taormina, Sicily (27/06/02) have been added.

Another on-line interview with Jim can be found on the website. Follow the links for 'scan', and then 'popnews'.

Today is 16th April 2002. You are in EDINBURGH, USHER HALL.
Please send in the set list!

Monster by Liquid People has now been accepted for release by Simple Minds and will be released on Defected Records as Liquid People v. Simple Minds. All parts have been played by Liquid People and no samples have been used.

Liquid People have also agreed to remix the next Simple Minds single.

There's a forthcoming album of Simple Minds remixes in the pipeline. This will include Monster, but no more information is known at this time.

The new version of the Cry Single, a German slimlined jewelcase varient of the 'silver' edition, has been confirmed as featuring Cry, For What It's Worth and The Garden. No 'bronze' versions have turned up however.

Today is 15th April 2002. You are in ABERDEEN, MUSIC HALL.
Please send in the set list!

The Billy Sloan Special last night was an absolute blast. The whole two and a half hours (which was extended from two) were devoted to Simple Minds with Billy playing his favourite Simple Minds numbers, Jim selecting the non Simple Minds cuts, extended interviews, e-mail questions from people on the list, and the first (and only) play of a three track session CD, pre-recorded by Simple Minds.

Produced by Gordon Goudie and Kevin Burliegh, the sessions were:

1. New Sunshine Morning [Acoustic Version]
Stripped down and bare, opened by harmonica, a beautiful and soulful version of one of the favourites from the Cry album.

2. She Moved Through The Fair [Acoustic Version]
Nothing like their performances with Alan Stivell in the mid 1990s, the song was stripped down and given an electronic heartbeat. Néapolis style and effects. Old song in modern guise.

3. Freedom Angel [Acoustic Version]
Written during the Cry sessions in Taormina, Sicily, this slow new song was characteristed by strong female backing vocals.

Here's the playlist for the show. It reminded me of my days of listening to Anne Nightingale on Radio One in the 1980s on a Sunday night - one great song after another.

1. One Step Closer
2. Spaceface
3. Book Of Brilliant Things [Live] (from Live In The City Of Light).
4. Changeling
5. Space
6. New Sunshine Morning [Acoustic]
7. Speed Your Love To Me
8. Don't You Forget About Me by Billy Idol
9. Homosapien [with promo introduction]
10. She Moved Through The Fair [Acoustic]
11. Face In The Sun
12. Elected by Alice Cooper
13. When Doves Cry by Patti Smith
14. Deliverance by Regency Buck
15. The Light Pours Out Of Me by Magazine
16. Soul Love by David Bowie
17. Gasoline Alley by Rod Stewart
18. Dead Vandals
19. Freedom Angel [Acoustic]
20. Next by Alex Harvey
21. Public Image Limited by PIL.

Highlights during the discussions with Jim included:

  • The band's excited and looking forward to the tour. They have rehearsed 40 songs, out of which they will pick 25 each night. Fans going to several shows should enjoy varied set-lists. Jim's been listening to the old bootlegs of the band. This is the start of a new live momentum for Simple Minds.

  • Charlie's been chained to his new amp. Eddie Duffy's a Simple Minds fan, ten years younger than Jim and Charlie. Comes from the same street in Toryglen.

  • Changeling and Speed Your Love To Me are both part of the 40 songs.

  • Jim remembered writing Changeling at EMI Publishing with Charlie and Mick MacNeil on a four track. He recalled it was the first song they wrote with Mick. (Note: this contradicts John Leckie's comments that when they entered the studio to record Real To Real Cacophony, Derek Forbes had the Changeling riff.)

  • Jim mentioned that if EMI were really behind Our Secrets Are The Same, they'd have got it out. This was despite an international meeting where it got the thumbs up, and was labeled 'great'. He called Jordi the "Spanish Billy Sloan", and said "good on him" for playing it. Jim also mentioned that after it leaked onto the Internet, no record company would touch it. The discussion finished on a romantic note - that all the greats had a 'lost album'.

  • Space is a Kevin Hunter ballad.

  • Jim regretted taking so long to do a covers album. He feels there's a stigma about them at the moment. But if John Lennon did covers, then they were good enough for him. Neon Lights was seen as a great way to get working again, as a no pressure project.

  • After the new version of She Moved Through The Fair, Jim mentioned that if rock music's got a future, it's because you can take different things and mix them up to create new music. They went back to the original folk song and gave it a new context. He mused about the possibility of Simple Minds doing a stripped down album - not purely acoustic, but sparse, electronic music.

  • Charlie Burchill and Mark Kerr have formed a great songwriting partnership. Mark spent two weeks writing songs with Charlie in Dublin - these songs will form the basis of the next Simple Minds album.

  • Jim's mother wouldn't let him see Alice Cooper.

  • Simple Minds won't tour Australia or South America this tour. This is beacuse they get offered tour dates from promoters, and don't choose themselves. But, as Jim mentioned, people will be keeping a close eye on how this tour goes, and so dates in these countries are a possibility for subsequent tours.

  • Jim recalled scrapping together £60 to record Dead Vandals and Saints And Sinners. The single was supposed to be a double A-side. Dead Vandals was their New York Dolls song. If Billy had played Dead Vandals ten years ago, Jim would've killed him!

  • Half of the Cry songs were written in Sicily. Some were left over (such as Freedom Angel) and will be used for the new album.

A great show. There was far, far more, but those are my highlights.

Business discussions have been taking place last week about the possibility of recording a DVD for this tour. Jim mentioned that they were looking at playing at the amphitheatre, Taormina, Sicily for the filming.

It's been reported in the Italian press that Mick MacNeil will be rejoining Simple Minds. Why this rumour has surfaced now, on the eve of their tour, is unknown.

I can't confirm this but I'm just passing the rumour on. However, I would suspect that if he's involved, he'll be part of the collective: perhaps donating songs and working on arrangements with the dynamic cast of Simple Minds: Jim Kerr, Charlie Burchill, Kevin Hunter, Gordon Goudie, Mark Kerr, Maggiorana, Tignino and Pat Lego.

This is just my take on it.

Jim was interviewed by the Belgian frenchspeaking magazine Telemoustique last week.

The Best Of Super Audio CD features an additional mistake. Mandela Day, when displayed on the player's LED display, is written as 'Mandela Bay'.

The song also caused problems for the Japanese compilers of 81-95 DJ Copy who labeled it 'Mandera Day'.

Cry Reviews

A favourable on-line review of the album in Dutch can be found here. It's taken from La Dernière Heure ("The Last News"), a popular tabloid.

After a lengthy hiatus, Simple Minds swagger confidently back on to the scene with Cry, their first collection of all new songs in almost four years. Recorded in Sicily and Glasgow, the album is described by frontman Jim Kerr as 'a vast departure in sound from the mid-eighties, bombastic, let's say stadium rock, Simple Minds'. Merging modern recording technology with a sound first explored on early albums such as Real To Real Cacophony, Empires And Dance and Sons And Fascination, Cry looks set to both delight longtime fans and introduce the band to a whole new audience.

Thanks for the kind words on your website in relation to my review of "Cry" on amazon.

I enjoyed the album. It has its shortcomings, of course, (like most records) but judged in isolation and entirely on its own merits I found it a very pleasant surprise.

Great website, by the way. When reviewing Simple Minds - which I've done on two or three occasions - I always drop by to make sure I've got all the facts right. Opinions are flexible, facts aren't!

Kevin Maidment

Classic Albums Revisited
David Stubbs commends New Gold Dream

Nineteen-eighty-two, the year of Simple Minds' sixth and best album, was one of the greatest in music history. There was a thriving Club Culture, fed by the subversive narcissism of the new romantics, and across the water an explosion of synth-funk innovation, from Larry Levan's The Peech Boys to Afrika Bambaataa, all of which fed the sensibilities of popist introverts New Order and Scritti Politti. The year also saw ABC's The Lexicon Of Love, The Associates' Sulk and, the third in that great trilogy of impossibly romantic, untoppable new-pop albums, Simple Minds' New Gold Dream (81-82-83-84).

From their raucous beginnings as Johnny And The Self Abusers, Simple Minds had been urged to refinement and a sense of the epic by a love of groups like Chic, but also by Eno, Roxy Music, Neu! and La Dusseldorf. They swiftly rejected the glum and parochial chrysalis of punk in order to find a sound that straddled the biggest and best of America and Europe: cinematic, transcendental, the stuff of distant dreams rather than gloomy quotidian realities - and if that sounds 'apoliticaI', remember this is the sort of ' politics' pop is very often, most effective at.

With Empires And Dance (1980), featuring I Travel, it was clear that Simple Minds had listened to the right German groups, watched the right European movies, read the right texts as they inter-railed across the continents. As brilliant a musical transcription of their experiences as it is - check the slide projection effects of 30 Frames A Second - you can make out the joins of their influences.

With the follow-up albums, 1981's simultaneously released Sons and Fascination and Sister Feelings Call, Simple Minds broke another punk taboo. Not only did Jim Kerr talk in interviews of his love of Genesis (circa The Lamb Lies down On Broadway) but they hired Steve Hillage, the ultimate prog hippie, as producer. For those more interested in the credible than the incredible, this was heresy. Kerr's pomp baritone, meanwhile, bristled with vaulting, epic ambition. But so it might With tracks like The American, Theme For Great Cities and Seeing Out The Angel, Simple Minds were on the point of achieving a unique synthesis of pop, prog, punk, funk and avant-garde.

Come New Gold Dream and Simple Minds enjoyed critical worship and every prospect of a vast, dawning fan base. If they wanted to take over the world, there were plenty willing to hold Kerr's coat: "Anything is possible... ", Indeed.

For the cover art, the Minds eschewed the oblique modernist tendencies of previous sleeves for a typeface and aura suggestive of some rekindled mediaeval mysticism. Had the contents been less than brilliant, more impertinent attention might have been paid to this conceit.

As it was, New Gold Dream glistened like a grail from its opening chimes. On Someone Somewhere In Summertime, Michael MacNeil's keyboards are reminiscent of Abba's Dancing Queen (according to a mischievous Paul Morley, the best new music was "post-Abba rather than post-punk") as Kerr hints at a shimmering and elusive fictional or authentically imagined state of environmental ecstasy: "Moments burn, slow burning golden nights, Once more see city lights... ". Colours Fly And Catherine Wheel equally twists and flickers and falters - grammar and sequence collapse to great effect. "Great times attack inexpensive thrills... Catch a boy Fell Falling FalI in love FelI Falling... " In conjunction with the intricate interplay between MacNeil's keyboards and guitarist Charlie Burchill, there's a perfect, dazzling sense about these non sequiturs.

Promised You A Miracle, which became the band's first hit single, makes what has come before it seem like small fireworks. "Promises, promises as golden days break wondering ." What's so great about this track, and indeed Big Sleep, isn't just its combination of stinging riff with delicate mosaic musical colouring, but its subtle rhythmical patterns, which are a feature of the whole album. There's no programming on New Gold Dream (though credit must surely go to producer, arranger and engineer Peter Walsh). Instead, three drummers were used Mike Ogletree, Mel Gaynor, and, on Promised You A Miracle, former Skids drummer Kenny Hyslop. Interwoven with Derek Forbes' busy, funkified bass, the rhythms never tumble to 4/4 earth, seeming to dance and shape-shift in mid-air, like the aurora borealis.

Following Somebody Up There Likes You, a golden, dawn-breaking instrumental follow-up to Theme For Great Cities, which was generally the opener for their gigs around this time, comes the title track, in which all of the pent-up energy of the album is finally unleashed with full-on locomotive optimism, a sort of celestial bullet train. "Crashing beats and fantasy, setting sun in front of me" - it's as close to anthemic as the album gets, a chant for the New Pop Class of 1982 who didn't know that Howard Jones and Nik Kershaw, were around the next corner.

Glittering Prize teeters gracefully, a stately but snowblinding display of the jumbled motifs on New Gold Dream - clear skies, dreams, romantic moments that are both perfect but transient and uncertain. It's these last qualities that distinguish Simple Minds from U2, whose open-air, sanguine tendencies, while bracing, lack intricacy or nuance.

With Hunter And The Hunted, the album begins to draw to a close and cast long shadows. "Kyoto in the snow but Heaven's far away," sighs Kerr, who even alludes to "the side effects of cruising at the speed of life/ The side effects of living in temptation," as if aware of the impending mortality of the moment captured on the album. Yet in the autumn of its 40-odd-minute life, it seems more beautiful than its springtime promise, as encapsulated in guest player Herbie Hancock's magnificent, meandering solo - kudos to the lateral thinker who got him on board.

Finally, there's the oblique and inconclusive King Is White And In The Crowd, with its surreal mix of Simple Minds' influences, from Eno to Abba to Krautrock, and the sense that the much-vaunted concept of perfect pop is both fleeting and fragile - or 'powerful and transient'. MacNeil's decaying synth tones, the measured rhythmical pace and BurchiII's firefly guitars all amount to a dignified fade-out into the dying light, leaving questions and ambiguities still hanging in the dark, electric air.

After New Gold Dream, Simple Minds gigged incessantly and became addicted to stadium crowds. The Steve Lillywhite produced Sparkle In The Rain (1984) had its moments, but after 1985's Don't You (Forget About Me), a song not written by them but for the film The Breakfast Club (it had already been rejected by Bryan Ferry), the Minds' golden sound lapsed into turgid, leaden parody. The political consciousness of Belfast Child (1989) and Amnesty campaigning did them moral credit but seemed only to lend a pious starch to their sound.

In a sense, though, the decline that followed New Gold Dream was the point. New pop was only ever a glimpse, not a sustainable proposition - a break in the clouds, a shaft of sun. The moment may have passed but, 20 years on, New Gold Dream sounds as pristine and out of time as when it was first released.

David Stubbs
Uncut Magazine
May issue

As their appeal becomes more selective, the Minds move away from stadium rock Simple Minds' commercial decline in the mid-Nineties was as precipitous as their critical decline in the mid-Eighties. They're still hang-gliding in there, however, with this, their 17th album. Jim Kerr describes the Minds as a "state of mind", and certainly, on the title track and single, there's a lingering sense of soaring across mental and emotional landscapes that reminds that this group were spiritual forerunners to The Verve. Kerr and guitarist Charlie Burchill have attempted to rejuvenate their sound with the help of Italian electronica merchants Planet Funk, most effectively on the Orb-esque One Step Closer. Overall, however, while it's heartening that Simple Minds have abandoned their windier stadium rock tendencies, this lacks the magisterial lightness of a New Gold Dream or Sons And Fascination. (3/5)

David Stubbs
Uncut Magazine
May issue

Cry entered the UK chart at number 80. A very disappointing position. However, the tour will probably drum up further interest.

And there are some other, let's say "less honest", methods of promotion:

"I was in a WHSmiths today -- I picked up the copies they had at no 83 and put them over the No 3 slot.

It's made me feel a lot better and will confuse the shite out of some people -- I reccomend this to the list :))"

Paul Hewlett
Yahoo! Groups mailing list

The limited edition versions were available first. These feature a special edition of the album, which includes the Cry video, packaged in a digipak sleeve and presented in a slip case.

I saw a press release where the number of limited edition packages was limited to 5000. After many mails on the subject, it looks more likely that 5000 copies were issued to each European country.

A little more information can be found the discography section.

As for a US release, various dates have been proposed from mid-April, or mid-June. The later is more likely as it will coincide with the tour.

Another format of the Cry single has surfaced. Found in Germany, this three track CD features the 'silver' artwork in a slimline jewel case. (Catalogue number: Eagle EAGLX218). More information as it comes in.

The long promised Best Of Super Audio CD has finally arrived. It was released on the 1st April.

There is no mistaking it in the sales racks. The jewel case has rounded corners and "Super Audio CD" is printed on the spine artwork (where the originals have "Digitally Remastered"). Less obvious are the crisper song titles on the back artwork. Unfortunately, no corrections have been made to the sleeve notes.

Super Audio CDs will play on standard CD players. But "for an unforgettable audio experience, you've really got to hear it on a new Super Audio CD player." The full technical blurb is here.

The songs included are the same as the standard Best Of: so you'll get unique versions of Let There Be Love, Real Life, Hypnotised and War Babies.

Promotional copies have small blue stickers and are missing one of the discs.

Simple Minds wish to alert all fans to the fact that stolen tickets are currently being circulated by touts, primarily for the Glasgow and London gigs. These tickets are invalid and anyone attempting to enter the venues using them will be turned away. In order to avoid disappointment, and to thwart the touts, Simple Minds urge all fans to buy their tickets from recognised official vendors and outlets.

The tour starts tomorrow in Aberdeen. But dates are still filtering out.

One is a rumour of a concert in Taormina, Sicily, near the end of the tour.

However, there's now confirmation about the Austrian date. Simple Minds are playing the Freizeitinsel festival on the 1st July.

Kinkster are the support for dates in Belgium.

Please send in set lists!!! Thank you.

All the lyrics on this website have been taken from album sleeves, music books and old fanzines. None of them have been transcribed.

For example, the lyrics for Neapolis were taken from Japanese copies of the album.

Unfortunately, lyrics for Cry haven't been published (yet). But transcribed lyrics have been posted to the Yahoo! Groups mailing list. I can't vouch for their accuracy.

Whilst the Cry transcriptions are good, there's always the odd word that's misheard, which can throw out the whole meaning of the song (for example, the 'machine man' from Death By Chocolate). That's why I don't publish transcribed lyrics - you can be sure that they're right here.

An example, of some dreadful lyrics, take a look at this example of I Travel:

From Empires And Dance lyric sheet included with the album. The source for Dream Giver.
From Billboard's The Greatest Hits Of Simple Minds. Well dodgy cassette compilation from Indonesia.
Cities, buildings falling down
Ideal homes falling down
These pictures I see on the wall
Timeless leaders stand so tall
Assassin in a hit and run
Asia steals a new born son
Evacuees and refugees
Presidents and monarchies
She believe in falling down
On having before falling down
Don't look so gladly on the wall
The time she bring the spending coat
I though you'd made up feedle noon
This is what I've been looking for
We're back to wish back to back
To ten bolt up heat

Radio stations from Spain and Sweden, and a couple from the USA, have been added to the Promote Cry section.

Many thanks to everyone who sent in radio stations and contacts, and for those who took time to e-mail them.

I'll keep the list on-line for when the next single is announced.

Fans in Italy can listen out for Cry on RDS (Radio Dimensione Suono) and Radio Capital.

Jim and Charlie were promoting Cry on Spanish TV on the 20th March. The interview, which lasted an hour, included Cry, the new tour and, of course, their 25 years in the music business.

The interview can be seen here.

I don't know if it's included on the web, but Moisés Prendes was featured on the programme as a fan from Spain. (He's the author of the long running fanzine Mission In Motion.)


It's show time! - the annual Olympia Music fair returns on Saturday and Sunday 4th and 5th May to this World famous venue in the heart of the UK's capital. Great news - we have a pair of free tickets available!

At this massive event, you'll be able to buy CDs and vinyl PLUS memorabilia, DVDs, books, videos, tapes, posters, autographs etc. In a top quality well-lit, carpeted Hall, you'll find all the major UK dealers plus traders from USA, Australia, Canada and all over Europe. In addition there will be guest appearances at the event.

Organisers web link

Winners will be added to the guest list for the event. And the question is:

Who can be seen in the back of the Cry video? He's dressed in white, and can be seen walking behind the main characters in the factory scenes, or speeding around on a scooter.

E-mail me with your answer. Competition closes on 29th April.

And another competition is being run by a U2 website, who are featuring Simple Minds as Artist Of The Month: in association with Record BMG/Eagle are holding a competition for the Cry album release:
10 CD singles (Bronze edition)
10 CD promos (4 titles: Jim Kerr Speech, Cry, Spaceface, One step closer)

The competition can be found on one of these links:
Concours page
Arist Of The Month
Cry page
Tour page

Jim was recently interviewed by the German magazine Zillo. (In fact, there's some promotional in Germany on RTL, and some adverts for the limited edition album and tour in music magazines.) The album was also reviewed on BFBS (Britsh Forces radio station) and received an positive review.

Jim is also interviewed by todays Sunday Express.

Jim appeared on Scotland Today last Friday. But don't worry: the full interview is also here. Also, check the site out for the competition: win five signed copies of Cry.

He will also be interviewed on Billy Sloan's Radio Clyde show tonight (14th April) at 20:00 - 22:00 BST.

On the subject of Billy Sloan's show, he recently previewed Cry by playing a selection of tracks on his Sunday night show. These were quickly recorded, and despite their low quality, ended up on

Since the release of Cry, it's been realised that his broadcast versions were of an earlier mix of the album. Those interested should download Disconnected in particular, which appeared as a stripped down mix.

He also played Death By Chocolate from the unreleased Our Secrets Are The Same. Those listening reported that it sounded like a different mix.

Which is was - there are two different versions of Death By Chocolate.

To outline the difference, here's a tiny snippet (Windows WAV files) of the two versions of Death By Chocolate:
1. Jordi Tarda version. Taken from Internet streaming broadcast
2. CD quality version. Taken from CD

I've included these tiny samples just for comparison of the two mixes, and for comparison of the Jordi broadcast quality and CD quality. There has been debate recently whether the Jordi broadcasts represent 'CD quality'. They don't - there's better recordings out there.

Some updates on some new releases:

1. New Gold Dream by GoldDreamer.
White label copies of this have circulated, and feature a seven minute mix. However, there's still no news of a release, and it's becoming almost mythological. To prove that it does exist, a sample of it can be found here. (Windows WAV file - which I've purposely made low-quality).

2. Monster by Liquid People.
More promos were released by Soul Syndicate, for club usage only, and feature a Cricco Castelli remix. This is to be followed by a commercial release on Defected - but it's remained TBA despite airplay on Radio One.

3. The Darkness by Jeremy Sylvester.
Just released on Azuli Records (AZNY156), this song takes Charlie's guitar riff from Don't You (Forget About Me), and mixes in some drum and bass and the odd line of lyrics. The flip side, The Things I Can Do, also has a Simple Minds feel to it.

4. Alive And Kicking by Simple Minds
This turned up on 12" acetate from Whitfield Street studios. It's not Simple Minds, but does feature the "ba ba ba" backing vocals from the instrumental version of the song, mixed into about six minutes of drum and bass. Could be a long lost Néapolis B-side remix?

The reviews for the new album have been mixed. As expected, the UK press haven't had anything good to say about it at all, whilst the reviewers on mainland Europe have better things to say.

Even though the Q reviewer hated the album, its a pity that he couldn't even inform the readership of the changes within the Simple Minds camp (the collaborations with Gordon Goudie, Vince Clarke and Planet Funk) and the diversity of the album (when compared with their nineties output).

Even his throughaway comment about the 'tired 12-bar blues' should've been expanded - since when has Simple Minds ever been associated with a 12-bar blues? Opportunity for some constructive, informative writing missed.

The amazon review hits the nail on the head.

That the opening bars to Cry finds Jim Kerr opining "It's difficult to love you when you do the things you do time and time again" almost implies that the hideously unfashionable Simple Minds are once again anticipating getting stabbed in the buttocks by poison pens and have decided to save their critics the bother by writing the reviews for them. Well, if that's the case, they've done themselves a little bit of an injustice. The good news--and from this world, not the next--is that Jim Kerr has not reneged on his commitment to making an indecently modest pop record, one where any delusional notions of stadium rock empires are held in check and where melody is a stronger currency than reverb and hot air. Although the cleaner-than-a-kitchen-showroom production is out of step with the contemporary, scuffed-up sounds of "now"--Simple Minds remain hamstrung by their own outmoded brand of professionalism-- Cry has more than enough decent tunes to entice persons beyond the well-creased folds of their fan base. Indeed, sparklers such as the Vince Clarke-penned instrumental The Floating World (a satisfying instance of Eurosynth deja-vu), the insouciant strum of Lazy Lately, the slight but rotation-friendly Spaceface and the typically traditional fare of One Step Closer all cajole the listener into thinking the unthinkable, that 2001's Best Of Simple Minds compilation may have arrived a tad too hastily. Happily, Cry is more of a cause for joy than tears.

Kevin Maidment

Coming to a half empty stadium near you...

These are testing times for Simple Minds. After last years bewildering album of techno-rock cover-versions, this, their first original album in four years, is a disappointing concoction of half-baked ideas and stale ingredients. Listening to B-side standard tracks such as The Floating World, one can only conclude that stylised Euro-disco isnt Jim Kerr and Charlie Burchill's forte. On Spaceface and New Sunshine Morning, Kerr's lyrics say nothing grandiosely, while Slave Nation is a tired 12-bar blues. The single Cry is much better, but the inclusion of two versions only serves to cement a sense of creative stalemate. Seems that, in jettisoning a band set-up in the studio, Kerr and Burchill have stripped their music of their spark.

James McNair
Q Magazine

Cry was released in Holland last Friday. The limited edition packs were available in the shops.

Sadly, and this appears to be reflected in opinion throughout Europe, there has been little promotion of Cry by Eagle evident in any music based publication. Jim has been spotted in Holland and Spain doing promo work, but the record company didn't even manage an advert in Q magazine.

More dates for the US leg of the tour have been added here.

Q magazine further show their incompetence with the following piece of blurb for the tour:

"...So welcome back Simple Minds, with their 12th album imminent, plus a covers EP which includes a version of Joy Division's Love Will Tear Us Apart..

I'm really looking forward to that.

The Cry single charted at number 47.

Considering that it received no UK airplay (that I know of), and no UK promotion (no posters or adverts), then number 47 is reasonable. At least the (odd) video has received plenty of rotation on VH1.

There's a Simple Minds special on Studio Brussel today.

The whole album will be broadcast during the day, along with some special comments from Jim.

Unfortunately, it looks like we missed Jim on Dutch Radio 2 yesterday, where he gave an interview about the new CD.

Cry is also being pushed on Dutch Radio 3 by Ruud de Wild. He mentioned that they have their 'original' drummer back which he's very happy about (so is obviously a fan) and will be giving away tickets soon.

BBC Radio Scotland will broadcast a history on the band on Monday, at 4.05PM BST. (We're switching to British Summer Time on Sunday which is one hour ahead of GMT).

Entitled "Silver, Gold and Platinum", DJ John Cavanagh will profile Simple Minds with contributions from Jim Kerr, Bruce Finday, Steve Hillage and Tony Stewart.

(It isn't known if this is new material or a revamp of Anne Nightingale's 1989 documentary on the group, but this one claims to be up-to-date, so it has to cover their ninties work and Cry.)

More information here.

The programme lasts 55 minutes.

All the credits for Cry have been added to the Cry page.

The album packaging is much glossier than Neon Lights, including a 24-page booklet. On each page is a single line from Jim (reproduced here on 8th March), with artwork based on unused Neon Lights photos, pictures from the Dancing Barefoot video, and behind the scenes shots from the Proms concerts. Interestingly the new pictures of Jim and Charlie, reproduced here on the 1st and 2nd March, are not used.

5000 numbered limited edition packages will also be released. This version of the album is housed in a digipak sleeve (not unlike the singles) with the 24-page booklet tucked into the sleeve. The Cry video is included as a bonus, and the whole package is enclosed in a slip case.

The Cry Single was released in the UK last Monday. At the time of writing, the UK chart poisition isn't known, although it was in the thirties in the mid-week chart. Which is better than expected, given the lack of promotion evident (either in the music press nor on the radio).

The video has been aired a few times on MTV Europe and VH1.

For the collectors, two CD-acetates are circulating. A single track varient, and a three-track (which corresponds to the first single). Details about the three track can be found here.

More tour dates added including several in the USA.

At the end of last year, Simple Minds were considering a joint world tour with INXS. Although that has failed to materialise, a few dates co-heading with INXS are still going ahead. These appear at the end of the USA leg of the tour.

Several new dates have also appeared in Denmark. Simple Minds are playing the "Grøn koncert" (Green Concert), a small series of festival dates running across the country. Several local bands are included, plus a foreign name - obviously the Minds this year.

The shows are sponsered by Tuborg Beer and all the proceeds of the concert go into a trust fund for a charity.

A brief interview with Jim was included with You Magazine (with the Mail On Sunday, 17th March 2002).

It was the usual round of questions about ex-wives and family, and only mentioned the album and the band in passing.

Oddly the only photo they could find was one from Q Magazine taken for the promotion of Néapolis.

One question caught my eye:

Q: Is this a Frank Sinatra-style comeback?
A: I guess so. We sort of missed out on the 90s. We never quit or retired, but around three years ago we came close; I felt the commitment had gone. Now the fun's come back?

So, when did they come close to jacking it all in? Néapolis or Our Secrets Are The Same?

Just in time for the release of Cry, Virgin are apparently repackaing their recent Best Of.

The super audio version (long promised since its release in November) has finally appeared, with copies starting to circulate. It should be in the shops in the UK today.

And another version, this time with a selection of live material, has been announced on various retail sites. More news as it surfaces.

Part of the Cry single package was released in Holland yesterday.

This is a two-track CD single in a card sleeve with the silver design. Stripped down two-track CD singles have been popular in Europe since the mid-ninties (examples are given in the discography for She's A River, Hypnotised, Glitterball and War Babies.)

This two-track (Eagle/PIAS 122.0218.124) couples Cry with the non-album track Lead The Blind - more information can be found here.

Another two-track single is expected on the 18th March, which will pair Cry with The Garden.

I've updated the list of radio stations to bombard to promote the Cry single. This includes new radio stations in Australia, UK, Chile and Belgium.

It's working. Studio Brussel have put Cry on their hot list.

The writers credits' for the songs on Cry album are listed below, along with one line comments from Jim. It isn't until you see these credits, that you can appreciate how many people were involved with this great album.

1. Cry
"Try singing a song... spoken in slow motion... make it a murmur... vain glorious"
Written by: Jim Kerr, Maggionara, Nicita, Tignino and Pat Lego

2. Spaceface
""Talking to the stars, no time to idle wars, big on aviation and love's levitation"
Written by: S. Kelly and Jim Kerr.

3. New Sunshine Morning
""Magical properties, coffee and cool mountain air, Toarmina Sicily"
Written by: Jim Kerr, Maggionara, Nicita, Tignino and Pat Lego

4. One Step Closer
""I settle down, I watch the dust, I read the book with all the rules that must... sets the time, sets the pace, then takes me closer, one step closer to that place"
Written by: Jim Kerr and Planet Funk

5. Face In The Sun
"Stripped to the bones, raw and ragged, dying slow as the Death Star"
Written by: Mark Kerr

6. Disconnected
""Only in my dreams I feel protected... this is reflected in all that I believe"
Written by: Jim Kerr, Kevin Hunter and Gordon Goudie

7. Lazy Lately
""And while I erode I know that you are strong... with the heat of a gun"
Written by: Charlie Burchill and Mark Kerr

8. Sugar
"Satori, benediction or elixir"
Written by: Charlie Burchill and Jim Kerr

9. Sleeping Girl
"From medieval Nippon to the Ginza beau monde...we love a sleeping girl"
Written by: Jim Kerr, Maggionara and Nicita

10. Cry Again
"Same scene, same story except this time the avatars are here"
Written by: Jim Kerr, Maggionara, Nicita, Tignino and Pat Lego

11. Slave Nation
"Acoustic guitars and synthesizers, overpowering brasslines, conspire to drag us down deeper into a warmer darker underworld."
Written by: Jim Kerr, Kevin Hunter and Gordon Goudie

12. The Floating World
"Coming from the heart of Boy Wonder, haunted by the smiling ghost of Billy McKenzie... goldfish swimming in blue pools... and the world is moving on"
Written by: Vince Clarke.

The album was produced by Jim Kerr assisted by Gordon Goudie except for Lazy Lately and Sugar which were produced by Charlie Burchill and One Step Closer which was produced by Planet Funk.

Reports have come in that the single Cry will be released this Friday (8th March) in Holland.

The posters with the bronze and silver editions feature pictures of Jim and Charlie respectively, backed with pictures of the Simple Minds community from the official site.

All times have been added for the 'B-sides' of the singles. For What It's Worth is a great cover, and probably a left-over from Neon Lights (it shouldn't have been left!) whilst Lead The Blind is great - full of those classic Simple Minds sounds with a shouted chorus. "Easy Show!". Shouldn't be a B-side.

Vince Clarke's remix of Homosapien will please fans of eighties-style remixes. In fact, it sounds like pure Yazoo with Jim singing vocals.

Further information about the single can be found here

The new video has been seen a few times on VH1 (in particular on one show called New To VH1). Reports range from 'weird' to 'incomprehensible'.

The video does not feature the band, but a bunch of mime artists.

More tour dates have been added including Switzerland and the USA.

The first announced USA date is in Kelseyville, California. More information can be found here.

There will be a Simple Minds Special on the Dutch music channel TMF on the 12th March. It will start at 21:00 CET. You can mail your top five videos to

Some elements of the Dutch press were critical that Simple Minds didn't play live at the award. For the record, some of the reasons were:

Jim had just recovered from a bad bout of flu.
The rest of the band had been rehearsing without him.
It wasn't practical (for the seven minutes allocated stage time).
And you get the real thing in April, May and June!

More radio stations to blitz here. New additions include stations for The Netherlands, Finland, France and the USA.

Omroep Venray (Radio Venray), a local radio station in the Netherlands, will be playing Cry tonight (18:00-19:00). Their e-mail address has been added to the list.

More tour dates added: including one in Aberdeen (which currently kicks off the whole tour) and several in Spain.

Pioneering Eighties band Simple Minds are adding two more dates to their tour of the UK in April.

This will be the band's first major UK tour in seven years and will promote their new album Cry, which is being released on April 1.

The new tour dates are Aberdeen Music Hall on April 15 and Edinburgh Usher Hall on April 16.

Singer Jim Kerr told the Daily Record: "It feels the right time to be producing new music and touring live again."

Daily Record

The Dutch band Kane will be supporting Simple Minds during the German leg of the tour.

This guitar based band also played at the Edison Awards.

You can find out more about them on their website.

There have been some additions to the Marketplace.

Australian and French radio stations have been added to the radio station list - and check it out for another new picture of Jim and Charlie.

Another tour date added: Edinburgh, Usher Hall.

"Feel free to spread the word amongst your network of Minds' fans/contacts about the show."

"The more emails I get - particularly from abroad - the better the show is going to get. Clyde 1 love that kind of thing. So if they think I'm being listened to around the world... the show could run and run."

"What I'm doing on Clyde 1 is pretty different from the daily chart fodder they broadcast, so I need all the friends and allies I can muster."

Billy Sloan

Contact details for Billy and Radio Clyde can be found in the list of radio stations.

However, things have been turned around.

Also, it would be great if you could get the network of Minds' fans to email the group's official website asking Jim and Charlie to come in and do a session on the show.

I've asked them and they seem well up for it... but if the website is suddenly flooded with emails from around the globe requesting that they do a live session on Clyde 1, it can only help me achieve my goal.

Give it a try.

Billy Sloan

So, hit with those requests. It would also be great to generate lots of threads on the official site's community or on the Yahoo! mailing list - we know Jim reads both forums.

Mel Gaynor, Jim Kerr, Charlie Burchill, Eddie Duffy and Andy Gillespie Simple Minds accepted their Edison Award last night from Ruud Gullit.

They then mimed to Cry and Don't You (Forget About Me).

The show will be broadcast by TV2 on the 7th March.

Yesterday morning, Jim was interviewed by Radio 2 in Amsterdam. Speaking from his hotel room Jim spoke about 25 years of Simple Minds, the highlights etc., and the forthcoming awards show.

The interview finished with a play of Cry. (The first time in Holland).

More radio stations have been added to the list. Please keep them coming in.

People tell me that they've just been working through the list, e-mailing each in turn.

At the moment, I don't have any contacts for the USA, France, Spain and Italy. If you live in these countries, please send in the e-mail addresses of your national radio stations.

Incidentally, in a weird turn of fate, Rudy Léonet and Hugues Dayez (from Radio 21) played Death By Chocolate last Friday. Radio 21 is on the list - if they're playing the unreleased, unpromoted tracks, then let's get them backing the current single!

As mentioned by Mel Gaynor during his interview with, plans are being made for the tour to continue to the USA.

More radio stations added to the list.

Many thanks to everyone from the Yahoo! mailing list and via private e-mail for the suggestions. Please keep them coming in.

After Jim's comments on, many fans have been e-mailing radio stations around the world to persuade DJ's to play the new single.

Billy Sloan, journalist and DJ, and writer of the sleeve notes for The Early Years 1977-78 and The Best Of has already aired Cry and One Step Closer. After being hit with e-mails after discussions on the Yahoo! mailing list, he went on to play Spaceface, Disconnected and Sleeping Girl.

(You can listen on-line to his show at Radio Clyde on Sunday evenings. Check their website for scheduling.)

Jim also mentioned how suprised was when visiting Mark Goodier at BBC Radio Two last year. The station had been flooded with unprompted e-mails and ended up playing several Simple Minds songs.

So, I've collected some key UK e-mail addresses for Radio Stations and DJs from the Yahoo! mailing list. Many thanks to those who mailed them in.

E-mail them and get Cry on the radio. It deserves it.

And please send in more stations and contact e-mails. Every little helps.

Cry and One Step Closer can now be downloaded from

This is also home of several tracks from Our Secrets Are The Same.

You will need to download their satelite software to listen to the songs.

We all managed to miss Simon Mayo's interview with Jim during the promotion of Neon Lights.

Luckily it's still online here (and select Jim kerr from the "Audio" drop down box at the bottom of the page). Realplayer required.

Thanks for all the mails on the 'International Man Of Mystery', the guy on the right of the early picture of Simple Minds.

It turns out it was David Henderson, who was their sound engineer at the time.

Additions to the Neon Lights discography:

  • New scans of all Neon Lights releases.
  • New Dancing Barefoot press release
  • Extra information about the Dancing Barefoot promos.
  • New information about a German Neon Lights Sampler.

Additions to the Best Of discography:

  • New scans of all Best Of releases.
  • New information about the two Best Of album acetates.
  • New information about the Sampler acetates.
  • New information about the Spanish Sampler CD.
  • Extra information and corrections to the album page - including some more thoughts on the new mixes.

The second Best Of actate reveals that The Real Life by Raven Maize was either a last minute addition to the commercial CDs, or that clearance hadn't been obtained by that time - since it's missing from the acetate track listing.

Simple Minds: Cry Single, Bronze Edition
Eagle EAGXA218

1. Cry
2. Lead The Blind
3. Homosapien [Remix]

Digipak with slit in left hand panel holding double sided poster of Jim Kerr.

At the moment, it's believed that the album cut of Cry is featured here.

Lead The Blind is a new exclusive 'B-side'.

And, the Vince Clarke remix of Homosapien finally makes an appearance.

Simple Minds: Cry Single, Silver Edition
Eagle EAGXS218

1. Cry
2. For What It's Worth
3. The Garden

Digipak with slit in left hand panel holding double sided poster of Charlie Burchill.

Again, it's believed that the album version of Cry will be used.

For What It's Worth is a Buffalo Springfield cover - lyrics have already been uploaded. (This could be a Neon Lights outtake).

Finally, The Garden is another exclusive 'B-side'.

The start of the Cry discography has started:

  • Cry single discography including the bronze and silver editions.
  • Cry album discography including promos and CD actates.
Joining Jim, Charlie and Mel on this tour are:

Eddie Duffy: The bass player from Our Secrets Are The Same and Cry. This won't be his first appearance with the Minds - he was on stage with them at their Kosovo gig in 1999. A huge Simple Minds fan, he learnt bass from the age of 12 by practising Premontion and Changeling bass lines.

Andy Gillespie: The new man on keyboards. Rosie Gain producer, worked at Sound Control in Glasgow (owning a recording studio there), worked with SLAM DJs and is a great keyboard player and programmer. A long time big Simple Minds fan, he's currently working hard on recreating Simple Minds tracks and sounds for the forthcoming tour.

A message to Eagle Records: The mix of One Step Closer on the Cry Sampler (EAGCDP 196) is far better than the mix on advance album acetae Cry (Not Final Master) (EAGCD 196).

Speaking as a fan, please master the album with the sampler version!

More tour dates added including France, Belgium and Italy.

A correction to the statement from the 7th February. Simple Minds will be performing one track at the Edison Awards - more mimed than live. But they will be there, and this will be the first chance for many to hear a song from the new album.

Added some corrections to the page for Our Secrets Are The Same including the complete track timings for the songs (not the Jordi broadcast versions).

Monster by Liquid People has started appearing in record shops - 12" copies have turned up. This instrumental of Changeling has been a club favourite for the last couple of months.

For those wary of remixes, I can confirm that Monster is an instrumental version of Changeling with the drum and bass higher in the mix. (How this can be considered a different song by a different group is beyond me!)

Mel Gaynor will be on drums for the forthcoming tour.

More confirmation about the Edison Award: the band will be playing one track live at the event.

See also:
(Click on "Pop" and then "Nominaties" on the left hand side.)

Two Spanish tour dates have now been added to the tours section

The Edison Award show will be broadcast live on Radio 2 in Holland. On March 7th it will be shown by the TV channel TROS.

Tickets are available. The band will be there, but probably won't be playing live.

Incidentally, Simple Minds will be returning to the Heinekein Music Hall in Amsterdam on the 3rd June.

More dates have been added to the tours section.

Unfortunately still isn't ready.

However, can you help out? On that website, I've posted a picture of a very early line-up of Simple Minds. Does anyone know who the guy to the right is?

Please send in e-mail if you do.

My name is Jim Kerr.

I'm the lead singer of the Scottish band Simple Minds, and I'm talking about our new album, which is called Cry.

In April of 2002, Simple Minds will release their twelfth album of original material. The album in question is called Cry, and the album was recorded basically in the last six months of the year 2001. Primarily the album was recorded in Sicily and in Glasgow - Glasgow, of course, being the hometown of Simple Minds and Sicily, in southern Italy, is a place that, at least half of the time now, I reside.

The fact is that it's been almost four years since Simple Minds last released an album of new songs. And of course, four years in the pop industry, is like an entire generation. That being the case, we felt that really to begin with any new momentum, it was imperative that we came back with an album that was, let's say, more focused than some of the work that we'd been doing in the mid-to-late nineties. For me it was important we came back with a pop album.

And when I say a pop, I mean songs that are very heavy on melody, songs that are really tightly focused in terms of arrangements, and even as I look at the track listing just now, and indeed the length of songs, most of the songs come in under four minutes which, it's safe to say, is quite a change of direction for Simple Minds.

Whenever I'm asked to describe the sound of the album, in a strange way for me, I have to say that the album is both contemporary sounding and, in doing so, is also just a bit retro. Anyone who's been paying attention to the popular dance charts over the last few months - certainly over the last year - may have noticed how increasingly a lot of modern music is borrowing from the eighties sounds. And it is no secret that Simple Minds is perhaps one of the groups being sampled most heavily. Which is very flattering.

And similarly, some of those sounds, are coming, let's say, back into vogue. We ourselves have become more appreciative of early works - when I say early work I mean some of the albums we did prior to the breakthrough albums which featured songs like Alive And Kicking and Don't You (Forget About Me). Of course, in any modern recording, it's unavoidable to use some of the incredible technology that is available now, and we ourselves relied very heavily on that same technology, I think in the most positive sense. At certain times we three little studios on the go: one in Glasgow, one in Sicily and one in Dublin. And by sending music files through the `net and such, we were able to enlarge our group.

And it's worthwhile to speak about that group because while the very name Simple Minds to some people does conjure up the image of a group, especially a live group, the truth is that the core of Simple Minds really revolves around my partner Charlie Burchill and myself. Although having said that, on this album we really opened the door wide in terms of the amount of people who joined in on the song writing and, indeed, the collaborations. The technology helped bring all that together.

Of course, I would say that this is a vast departure in sound from the mid-eighties, bombastic, let's say stadium rock, Simple Minds. I think what is on offer here is a world apart. And, as I said earlier, if anything, this music probably reflects on the early albums like Real To Real Cacophony, Empires And Dance, Sons And Fascination, although I can hear elements of New Gold Dream in the album as well.

Certainly, for my part, the early aim of the songwriting was to keep things as simple as possible, and at this point in time, I like the simple emotions and the simple lyrics. Big choruses. And when it comes to the lyrics, it's amazing when you work with people who perhaps English is not their first language (and I'm not talking about Scottish people here [laughs]), a lot of the collaborators, a lot of the stuff was done in Italy, and it's amazing how effective things can be when you stick to the most simple languages possible.

The greatest thing for me recently, I have to say is, just to be happy once again, and excited by the process of making music.

Cry was chosen as the album's title, not necessarily because as a song it summed up the entire album - in fact I don't think one song sums up this rather diverse album - but the Cry in question for me... It's not a cry of sorrow particularly, it could be a cry of joy. I just felt it was a very sharp and focused word. 'Cry' is a word and emotion that is understood universally. And again, in keeping things as simple as possible. It certainly leapt out as a potential album title.

In terms of themes of the songs, there are songs like New Sunshine Morning, and One Step Closer, which if they're about anything in particular, they are probably about an idea of some sort of rejuvenation, rebirth, and I felt that in terms of getting involved in music again. It really did feel like a new burst of energy. And we certain hope that this leads to a new momentum, that Simple Minds can carry through over the next few years.

We feel incredibly fortunate to have the kind of past that we've had, the kind of career that we've had, and there is nothing about that past that we would wish to change. But for the first time in a long time, we are equally excited about the music we are presently making, and indeed the songs that are still to come.

Jim Kerr
Cry sampler introduction.

Cry album sampler
1. Jim's Introduction (7.10)
2. Cry (3.56)
3. Spaceface (3.33)
4. One Step Closer (5.58)

Hits from the start with an instant distinctive riff and now trademark, muted, almost whispered lyrics from Jim. Simple, stripped down, and very effective.
Killer chorus:
"You make me cry.
You make me cry again.
And you make me cry.
And the tears roll by again.
(Similar to: Slower, more refined, 'Jeweler To The Stars')

Gentle guitars in the background joined by minimal synths and textures in the foreground.
Killer chorus:
"She's a spaceface floating around.
My little spaceface floating around.
She's never coming down,
She's never coming down,
She's never coming down.
(Similar to: The Cult meets Babylon Zoo, but in a very restrained way - if that's possible.)

One Step Closer
Gorgeous majestic intro fades to white noise and gives way to a funky, quirky, irresistable, multi-textured groove. Charlie's guitar lines follow Jim's lyrics in the chorus. Neapolis texturing in the background. Permanent etching into the brain.
Killer Chorus:
" You'll take me one step closer, now I know you're there.
It's better now than never, now I know you're here,
You'll take me one step closer, now I know you're there.
Much better now than never, now I'll know you'll stay
(Intro similar to : 'Belfast Trance' meets 'Real Life')

Hats off to DJs in Spain who have already aired the new single Cry (on Radio 3).

John 'OO' Fleming vs Simple Minds: Belfast Trance

Belfast Trance : Nebula BELF001
A1: New Vocal Mix
B1: Original Mix
12" in picture sleeve

Belfast Trance : Nebula BELFCD001
1: Vocal Radio Edit
2: New Vocal Mix
3: Dub Mix
CD in slimline jewel case and picture sleeve

Released last Monday.

Simple Minds will be honoured with an Edison Award at the Heineken Music Hall in Amsterdam on the 27th February.

It isn't known if they will attend in person or play live.

(From what I understand, an Edison Award is similar to a Lifetime Achievement Award).

The first parts of the new Dream Giver site will start to appear on Sunday evening.

It will be an incremental launch: as parts of the new site appear, parts of this site will be taken off line.

Rather than add chunks piecemeal (a discography there, and then a timeline, and then the family tree), the whole footprint of the site will be added first, and then built upon. The pieces for Biba-Rom!, Johnny And The Self Abusers and the Life In A Day album, single and tour will be uploaded first.

In fact, it will look like a Simple Minds site from 1979 (pretending that the world-wide-web existed at that time).

Right: Jim Kerr 'Red Eye' tour poster. It probably dates from 1979, possibly earlier. Jaine Henderson remembered designing and pasting up 'Red Eyes' around London, so could be one of the last examples.

Just one of the examples of new material appearing on the new site.

Promos for the Cry album have started to circulate.

These four track sampler CDs feature an introduction by Jim, followed by full versions of Cry, Spaceface and One Step Closer.

I haven't heard it, but here's some info from one fan who has:

"The three songs on the sampler are fantastic, all the critics on the egroup (and I'm counting myself in) can SHUT UP. It's their best work in AGES. Not that much electronic, just the stuff that's around these days to use and sounds great without taking the feel out of the song. The single "Cry" is SO GOOD! I hope they make a good video for it, not a cheap one like they did for "Dancing Barefoot".

"What I heard now is better than "Neapolis" (I didn't like the album) and "Our Secrets Are The Same" - (I though it wasn't bad but not really up there with the great) and certainly better than "Neon Lights" (which to me was a collection of songs they should not have messed with)."

"This is the album every fan was waiting for all these years and I'm not exaggerating! Like Jim said, KILLER CHORUS is main word to describe the songs.".

"'Belfast Trance' is John 'OO' Fleming's cheeky offering which started life as John's personnel homage to one of his favourite tracks & has ended up being signed by same label that host's the samples owners - Simple Minds (well, the dance division anyway!)."

"Originally doing the rounds early in 2001 on a limited edition white [see news archives in April], this new release sees a brand new vocal mix chucked into the package to give those who already have the original 'new ammunition' & those who don't a variation on the original they know & love."

"The Original Vocal Mix is a classic piece of chugging trance, slowly building up to the very atmospheric breakdown where electronica meets the Simple Minds classic 'Belfast Child' in a meeting of (ahem) great 'minds' to give all Crasher-ites & Slinky Kids the rush of their life."

"The New Vocal Mix has been toughened up somewhat with the addition of a more contemporary Trance feel. With arpegiated riffs and a more creative use of the vocal sample Mr. Fleming comes up trumps with a package that will appeal to a broad range of trance fanatics."

Belfast Trance was relesed on Monday, on 12" and CD formats. The 12" features the new vocal mix backed with the original mix. (Nebula BELF 001). More information on the CD when I get hold of one.

In an epic lifespan of nearly 25 years, with total worldwide album sales of 25 million, the musical influence of Simple Minds has developed a very long arm indeed. It reaches from the smallest rock club to the biggest stadium and all the way back to clubland, and it's about to stretch even further with the news that the band will release a brand new album in March 2002 and return to the road soon afterwards for their first world tour since 1995.

2002 is Simple Minds' silver anniversary year, but with Kerr dividing his time between homes in Scotland and Sicily, and working from a wider musical palette than ever before, he and co-founder Charlie Burchill are doing anything but putting their feet up and surveying their achievements, much as they've earned the right. Instead they're overflowing with creative energy that holds the promise of an exciting new musical focus on the next record, the long-awaited follow-up to their last album of new material, 1998's Neapolis. Not to mention some celebratory live shows, as the band announce a 10-date UK tour starting close to home at the Clyde Auditorium on April 17, culminating in May with their first-ever performance at London's hallowed Royal Albert Hall.

The tour then moves on to Germany, with plans for shows in America, Japan and Australia in the late stages of development as we write. Kerr can't wait. "I was looking at our catalogue," he says. "There are songs we haven't played for a long time, like Up On The Catwalk, Speed Your Love To Me, The American and I Travel, and we have a real desire to play them again. We have to have a set that takes everyone on the journey and brings them up to date. We'll probably rehearse 30-40 songs."

It's a long way from the mean streets of Glasgow to the biggest arenas in the world, but when you're making some of the most adventurous and anthemic music of your day, the expedition takes care of itself. While we await the chance to appreciate 25 years of Simple Minds on stage, the full extent of that creative journey is underlined by the new compilation The Best of Simple Minds, a mighty 32-track testament that boasts no fewer than twenty top 20 hits and a great deal more.

It's an eloquent aide memoire to the band's world-class achievements, in the experimental, tastemaking combination of art, angst and European dance of their early post-punk days, such as I Travel and Life In A Day, and the anthems that have stirred live audiences by the tens of thousands since, like Don't You (Forget About Me) and Alive and Kicking, from records that set the album rock agenda of the 1980s such as New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84), Sparkle In The Rain and Once Upon A Time. This is one of the few British rock bands that truly made the American stadium A-list, the band whose Live Aid appearance in Philadelphia in 1985 was introduced by Jack Nicholson, and who saw an incredible five albums enter the UK charts at No.1.

The resumé takes in the widescreen Celtic melancholy of their 1989 No.1 Belfast Child, a bold and timeless excursion that outran the bubblegum pop of the day to the top of the charts, and the elegant, fearlessly pro-European vision of more recent hits like She's A River (from Good News From The Next World) and Glitterball (from Neapolis), recorded at a time when most of Britain was distracted by the transience of Britpop. Rather than following fashion, Simple Minds have always preferred to buck trends and start new ones of their own.

As one last memory-jog of just how far ahead of their time they were and how 21st century they sounded more than 20 years ago, The Best of Simple Minds closes with Raven Maize's club smash and top 15 pop crossover The Real Life, part of the Ministry of Sound's chart takeover of 2001 but a track featuring a sample from Queen's Bohemian Rhapsody but structured around Theme For Great Cities, from the Minds' 1981 album Sons and Fascination, as the band's influence renews itself for another generation.

"We were delighted about that, not in the sense that anyone owed us anything but we always thought, listening to that genre of music, we've got stuff staring people in the face. But try to imagine how we'd have felt in 1980 when we did a piece of music that was really a track on a freebie album, that it would be in the charts 21 years later wth Freddie Mercury on it. Like "Are we taking enough drugs here or what?" Our arena/stadium phase is well documented, but it's nice to see our early electronic phase is being picked up on and highlighted."

After Neapolis, Kerr began to spend more time in Italy, both in Sicily and then in Naples with local dance-rock alchemists Planet Funk (whose collaboration will be the opening track on the impending Minds album). "Probably two years ago there was a lot of crossover between dance and mainstream artists, Bryan Adams for instance, and two or three people were asking if I'd be interested in doing that. It's not really my bag but I said I'd come along and check it out, and through doing that, the process started again."

So did the process of listening to current European tastemakers who blend rock and electronic elements as Simple Minds themselves were doing more than 20 years ago. "We've been enjoying listening to the music of Air and Mirwais and some of the other stuff," says Jim. "It's not out of a sense of duty that we should acknowledge that and listen to a few tracks, the cycle has also come around within us."

A collaboration with Vince Clarke, of Erasure, Yazoo and Depeche Mode fame, will also adorn the next album, and further emphasising the club potential of Simple Minds' wide, sophisticated rock vista, they're now on the dance cutting edge again via Malcolm Duffy's mix of Homosapien, their version of the song by Buzzcocks leader Pete Shelley. The track has been reshaped by Duffy from this year's Neon Lights.

As well as being a recorded note of acknowledgement to Simple Minds' own influences, such as Velvet Underground, David Bowie and The Doors, Neon Lights did exactly what Kerr and Burchill wanted, providing fresh momentum that led directly to the recording of the next album. "We started in January, we made a decision of wanting to go for it and we got really excited about the early demos," says Jim. "Comeback albums are clumsy things, we just thought "Let's just do some work." We were really starting to work the creative muscles again in a low-key way."

So, clues to the sound of the forthcoming album? "I like the idea of very focused melodies, tight arrangements, commercial stuff. I said to Charlie, "This is the only kind of music I want to make just now. Let's try and go on the ledge and do some real pop stuff."

And if you ask Jim Kerr and Charlie Burchill what gets their creative engines going, you'll get the same answer they'd have given you 25 years ago and they were cutting-edge even then, sowing the seeds for Simple Minds in one of Scotland's first punk bands, Johnny and the Self Abusers. "On our passports, we're musicians," says Kerr. "We play, we write, it's what gets us out of bed in the morning and we want to write better songs and become better performers."

Posters for the UK were printed last Friday.

Extra dates added, including another in Germany. Check the Tour Dates for information.

The remix of Changeling is called Monster by Liquid People.

You can hear a sample of it, and purchase the white label at

Belfast Trance by John "OO" Flemming is set for release on the 14th January on Virgin

Two more German and a Netherlands tour date have been added. The full tour can be found here.

The new Dream Giver site will start to appear at the end of January.

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