Gold is at the center of one of the most representative albums of Simple Minds. The songs, the videos, the history enclose some very interesting hints.
Epic fantasies, anthems of hope, songs to celebrate life and, most of all, lots and lots of gold. Five years of studio rehearsing were necessary for Scottish Simple Minds to transform from one of the many new wave groups of the Eighties into stadium rock paladins, together with their colleagues and friends U2.
“New Gold Dream”, published in 1982, celebrates this slow artistic growth expressed in the album’s subtitle (“81-82-83-84”) which means to refer to the years spent in search of the perfect formula. Simple Mind’s “New Gold Dream” is one of those albums every collection should never do without. Nothing is missing for an enjoyable and original sound experience: the amazing voice of charismatic frontman Jim Kerr, and the elegant and breathtaking arrangements of the nine songs included.
All that glitters
The single “Glittering prize” stands out and represents a real “shining prize” for the fans. The videoclip perfectly summarizes the creative effervescence of a decade, still remembered in our days for its visual opulence. The scenography is entirely composed by golden drapes and objects. Golden are also the music instruments played by the quartet, as well as some details of their dark clothes and even a model reading a magazine while sitting on a precious deckchair.
A reference to history in the video
In one of the most successful scenes of the videoclip, the same Jim Kerr has his face covered up in golden make-up and comes out of a sarcophagus dressed as a faro. The reference is not accidental: ancient Egyptians, whatever their social class was, enjoyed embellishing their bodies with richly produced and decorated jewels. While the less wealthy would favor copper, the wealthier collected golden bracelets, necklaces and anklets, worked through peculiarly advanced techniques.
Egyptians, gold and opulence
At the beginning of the new Millennium the archeological excavations in southern Egypt brought to light some gold mines dating back to the period between 5300 and 3100 before Christ. The discovery led some scholars to hypothesize that it was the Egyptians, and not the inhabitants of Mesopotamia, who first extracted gold, adopting a very smart method to extract the precious metal from quartzite.