After four hits in the UK followed by a couple of less successful releases, Spandau Ballet's chart career appeared to be on the wane. However, this song re-ignited their fortunes and became the first of eleven consecutive singles to reach the Top 20. Bass player Martin Kemp recalled to The Mail on Sunday March 13, 2011: "This song saved the band in a way. The two singles before this were 'Paint Me Down' and 'She Loved Like Diamond,' from our Diamond album. They hadn't charted very well and we were scratching around for what to do. Then we gave 'Instinction' to producer Trevor Horn who really turned it on its head. It became a monster."
"The Night Chicago Died" was written and recorded by the British group Paper Lace. They talk about Al Capone in the song, but got a lot of details wrong - understandable since they wrote it based on gangster movies.