New Sensation

Album: Kick (1987)
Charted: 25 3
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  • Like all the original tracks on Kick, "New Sensation" was written by lead singer Michael Hutchence along with Andrew Farriss, who played a number of instruments in the group. Farriss came up with a guitar riff that carries the track musically; Hutchence added the "seize the day" lyric, encouraging us to live boldly, seeking out new sensations.

    "I felt that a lot of the lyrics on the Kick album were very positive lyrics," Farriss told Songfacts. "When I listen to that album, a lot of the lyrics are about celebrating life, and I find them particularly positive."
  • Listen carefully under the guitar and you'll hear a banjo line, which Andrew Farriss added using a sampler.
  • The video shows a different side of Michael Hutchence, putting him in a suit and ponytail (très chic in 1987) as the band performs the song at the Municipal House in Prague. INXS was fond of their visual effects, and this one used a combination of light waves mixed with a strobing look pioneered in the Wang Chung "Everybody Have Fun Tonight" video.

    Like most of their early videos, it was directed by Richard Lowenstein, their good friend from Australia.
  • INXS guitarist/horn player Kirk Pengilly played the saxophone part, and yes, Michael Hutchence yells "trumpet!" just before it plays. This was an in-joke: The group's other guitarist, Tim Farriss, wanted to play trumpet on the track, but Pengilly overruled him and got his sax solo.

    In the video version, Hutchence's call for trumpet is removed because it sounds really dumb when you actually see the saxophone.
  • This was the third single from the Kick album, which took the band to a new level. Outside their home country of Australia, they had just a modest following, but the first single from the album, "Need You Tonight," was a monster, going to #1 in America. "Devil Inside" followed, reaching #2, so by the time "New Sensation" was released, there was no question it would get airplay. It followed the sequence, peaking at #3 in July 1988 (the next single, "Never Tear Us Apart," stopped at #7).
  • INXS ruled MTV in 1988. At the Video Music Awards on September 7, they were the big winners, taking home five awards for the "Need You Tonight/Mediate" video. They closed the ceremony with a performance of "New Sensation."
  • With the promise of a "new sensation," this song is irresistible to ad agencies, who have placed it in commercials for Toyota, Sea World and McDonald's.
  • This plays in the Charmed episode Coyote Piper (2001), and in the Mr. Robot episode "eps3.1_undo.gz" (2017). It also shows up in these movies:

    The Way Way Back (2013)
    Towelhead (2007)
    Shattered Glass (2003)
    40 Days and 40 Nights (2002)

Comments: 1

  • Claude Young from Chicago Il.This track has a "Power Station/ Robert Palmer" feel, Great track
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