10 Songs, 45 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

1982’s 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1—or 10-1, as fans often abbreviate it—is Midnight Oil’s breakthrough album. The group’s creative growth spurt coincided with a new decade and a new era of global upheaval. Where many young bands responded to the onset of the Cold War era with new forms of cold, techno-driven pop, Midnight Oil re-engaged the ferocity and lusty urgency of rock ‘n’ roll. However, unlike Bruce Springsteen or John Mellencamp, the Australian band avoided “roots rock” and instead equipped its impassioned songs with angular, foreboding arrangements. The eerie portents of “Outside World” set the tone for a band disillusioned by the modern era: “It's the summer of another year/A little world-weary, a little more to fear/Hold those cards tight to your chest.” You won’t find any wallowing here. Rather than cower from themes of global corruption, imperialism, and media saturation, Midnight Oil confronted them head-on with a vigor and conviction matched only by The Clash—a likeminded band that was starting to fall apart as the Oils were picking up steam.

EDITORS’ NOTES

1982’s 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1—or 10-1, as fans often abbreviate it—is Midnight Oil’s breakthrough album. The group’s creative growth spurt coincided with a new decade and a new era of global upheaval. Where many young bands responded to the onset of the Cold War era with new forms of cold, techno-driven pop, Midnight Oil re-engaged the ferocity and lusty urgency of rock ‘n’ roll. However, unlike Bruce Springsteen or John Mellencamp, the Australian band avoided “roots rock” and instead equipped its impassioned songs with angular, foreboding arrangements. The eerie portents of “Outside World” set the tone for a band disillusioned by the modern era: “It's the summer of another year/A little world-weary, a little more to fear/Hold those cards tight to your chest.” You won’t find any wallowing here. Rather than cower from themes of global corruption, imperialism, and media saturation, Midnight Oil confronted them head-on with a vigor and conviction matched only by The Clash—a likeminded band that was starting to fall apart as the Oils were picking up steam.

TITLE TIME

More By Midnight Oil

You May Also Like