Listen to this track by Kiwi art-rockers turned new wave hit-makers Split Enz. It’s their 1980 hit single “I Got You” as taken from their landmark album True Colours.
By the time this song made waves internationally, the band had created a solid following in their native New Zealand from the early ’70s. By 1977, they’d taken on a new member in Neil Finn who was fresh out of high school, joining his older brother and founding member Tim.
Neil Finn’s skills as a musician were impressive, but still in their developing stages, slightly divergent from the complex art rock style of the band he’d joined. So, with this less elaborate approach and a more back-to-basics pop tendency in the younger Finn, he would go on to pen one of their most memorable, and enduring singles – this one, later to be widely covered over the years by acts as diverse as Pearl Jam, Marilyn Manson, and Semisonic.
Being from a musical family, and idolizing his older brother, it was maybe no surprise that Neil would build his own profile as a performer and songwriter, as opposed to becoming just a replacement member of a high-profile band. Split Enz would be a vital training ground for Neil, and he’d pay them back by writing this song, eventually becoming one of their most recognized tunes. It would achieve accolades on the charts and in other quarters besides.