This is another group who managed to put together a successful string of enjoyable hits in the mid-80s, although they ended up fading away from the chart fairly soon after. Of course, people know that Thompson Twins contains no twins at all, taking their names from the Tin Tin characters. When they started out in the late-70s, there were actually six or seven members, so they couldn’t be twins for that reason too.
By the early-80s though, they had slimmed down to a trio, consisting of Tom, Joe, and New Zealand-born Alannah. They had their first hit in November 1982 with “Lies”, but this missed the Top 40 by a long way. It was in January 1983 when they began their streak of success, when “Love On Your Side” became the first of their five Top Ten hit singles in the UK in just over a year.
It’s a tough choice, but this would have to be among my favourite hits of theirs. And then in April 1983 was “We Are Detective”, their second Top Ten hit. Also in this month they made the cover of Smash Hits. In July 1983 “Waiting” maybe surprisingly missed the Top 30. But they then went on their most successful chart run. In November 1983 “Hold Me Now” reached no. 4. Then in February 1984 “Doctor Doctor” went one better and reached no. 3.
And in March 1984 “You Take Me Up” went on to reach no. 2, to become their biggest hit single in the UK. A month later they made the Smash Hits cover again. And this just makes it even more of a surprise that they never made the Top Ten again, as the quality of their following singles was definitely up to standard. In July 1984 “Sister Of Mercy” just missed the Top Ten, and in December 1984 “Lay Your Hands On Me”, did as well.
In August 1985 “Don’t Mess With Doctor Dream” would be their final Top 20 hit single, and in October 1985 “King For A Day” would turn out to be the final time that they made the Top 40. In December 1985 “Revolution” would be their first single to miss the Top 40 since “Lies” a few years earlier. It was also around this time that Joe left, and Thompson Twins were essentially reduced to a duo.
Their return in November 1987 with “Get That Love”, followed in October 1988 by “In The Name Of Love ’88” both missed the Top 40. Suddenly making the Top 75 at all was a struggle. Going into the early-90s, a best-of album was released, but their moment had passed and this didn’t attract a huge amount of attention, missing the Top 20. They had two more minor hits in 1991 and 1992, but it was by this point that Alannah left too, and Tom had to take some rather drastic measures to keep the group going by cloning himself…