Asia’s Problems With ‘Heat of the Moment’ Success
Asia keyboardist Geoff Downes recalled how the surprise success of "Heat of the Moment" caused the band some unexpected problems.
He also explained why the song – which reached No. 4 in 1982 and became the 40th best-selling single of the year – almost didn’t appear on their self-titled debut album.
“It was an afterthought,” Downes told Prog in a new interview. “We were going to lead off with ‘Only Time Will Tell,’ but the label said, ‘Do you have anything else?’ So John [Wetton] and I came up with ‘Heat of the Moment’ in one morning. Literally, the bones of the song were written in maybe a couple of hours.”
Asked about the single’s chart achievement, he noted that "the massive success did offer up some problems. It was a big gravy train for a lot of people – management, the record label. People start to try and pull you in different directions, starting picking people off for their own ends.”
Downes, who’s also a member of Yes, explained that the idea behind Asia was to “offer a Yes-type alternative at a time when Yes wasn’t operating."
“Originally Asia was going to be a five-piece," he said. "That’s what the label wanted. We auditioned Robert Fleischman, who was briefly the singer in Journey. Trevor Rabin came over. He didn’t get the job because I don’t think Steve [Howe] would have been happy with a second guitarist floating around. John was singing the vocals while we were looking for this extra person, and eventually we just turned around and said, ‘John sounds great, we’re sticking as a four-piece.’”
Yes and Asia will tour North America together during June and July.