My first experience with Columbia House (cassette tapes) came at the same time that I discovered there was other music out there besides U2, Top 40 radio, and hair bands. I was introduced to several bands in the summer of 1990. An intro to They Might Be Giants, The Sundays, Jesus and Mary Chain, Nine Inch Nails and of course World Party. This was the age before alternative radio, and definitely before there was music suggestion software, so music discovery was pretty rare. While the record companies may have loved this time (afterall they could sell you a two song single for $7) and most people didn't own CD players and computers were only useful for spreadsheets and typing term papers.
I can imagine Karl Wallinger looking back with the famous Marlon Brando line, "I coulda been a contender, I coulda been somebody..." Goodbye Jumbo is one of those rare albums that's perfect. It came along at a time when even the biggest of today's indie music snobs were still kowtowing to Janet Jackson's Rhythm Nation, so most people still don't know about this gem. It had two hits on MTV's 120 minutes "Put The Message in the Box" and "Way Down Now" which still both stand up to the test of time as great songs. Add a couple of classics in "And I Fell Back Alone" and "Sweet Soul Dream" and we're bordering desert island territory. So do yourself a favor and give it a listen...it belongs in your collection, if for no other reason than to remind yourself that perfect music existed but no one paid attention.
Buy World Party - Goodbye Jumbo