"Warriors Of The Wasteland" by Frankie Goes To Hollywood

By Mark Nobes

Frankie Goes To Hollywood's sixth single was their first not to make the UK top 5, reaching a disappointing No.19 in the UK singles chart. However, the song performed better in some European countries, reaching No.2 in France and No.7 in Germany. Indeed, this was their second best chart position in France ("Relax" reached No.1 here), so it was certainly not a chart flop.
The original album track was produced by Stephen Lipson. However, for the single release, Trevor Horn decided to create an electro-rock version (The Twelve Wild Disciples Mix) using samples and synths. He fed these into a computer sequencer to create the dance version of the original metal track. Although the band didn't perform on this version, they did play on the original album version, which I actually prefer. 
Warriors (Attack Mix) vinyl single by Frankie Goes To Hollywood
An "Attack Mix" was released on 12 inch vinyl which features the legendary guitarist Gary Moore on lead electric guitar. It's a real gem of a track that you should definitely check out if your'e a metal head. It was labelled as "Heavy Mental" on the front cover.
ZTT became reknowned for releasing numerous 12 inch versions of Frankie Goes To Hollywood's songs, and "Warriors" was no exception, with three separate 12 inch vinyl releases containing several versions of the song.

The Lyrics

Holly Johnson was inspired by T.S. Eliot's poem The Waste Land for the lyrics, as well as the movies Mad Max 2 and The Warriors. Johnson was also inspired by another poet, Dylan Thomas, for the previous single "Rage Hard". 
Although written in the 1980s, while Britain was being led by Margaret Thatcher's conservative government (which Holly Johnson made clear he is not a fan of), the lyrics of "Warriors" haven't dated one bit, and still ring true in the 2020's. "It seems to me that the powers that be, keep themselves in splendour and security" - no change there then! 
Johnson's lyrics proved to be a little too poetic for the British record-buying public, and they were in sharp contrast to the much simpler lyrics of the band's biggest hits "Relax" and "Two Tribes". Put simply, "Warriors" just wasn't as radio-friendly and didn't have a danceable melody or groove, which led to a disappointing chart performance. It certainly didn't receive the radio airplay of previous releases.
It's a great shame that the band's demise was soon to come, as it was clear that they had enjoyed a lot more input on the Liverpool album, with less interference from Trevor Horn. 
Frankie released one further single "Watching The Wildlife" before they split-up.

The Video

This is the only video that does not feature the actual band (even The Power Of Love featured the band in the frame surrounding the nativity scene) and instead features animations and still images/portraits of the band and some powerful and thought-provoking imagery, including oil rigs in the desert sands and the monotony of factory work.
Warriors Of The Wasteland UK 7 inch vinyl single - ZTT ZTAS 25

The 7 inch vinyl


UK 7 Inch Vinyl - ZTT - ZTAS 25

A. Warriors Of The Wasteland - 3:55

AA. Warriors Of The Wasteland - 5:01

For the 7 inch, the dance rock version features on side A with the album version on the flip side.

UK 12 Inch Vinyl - Warriors (Attack) - 12 ZTAK 25

A. Warriors (The Attack Mix) - 6:30

B1. Warriors (Return) - 6:18

B2. Warriors (End) - 3:29

Gary Moore was uncredited for his guitar work on side A.

UK 12 Inch Vinyl - Warriors (Turn Of The Knife Mix) - 12 ZTAX 25

A. Warriors (Turn Of The Knife Mix) - 8:09

B1. Warriors (Return) - 6:18

B2. Warriors (End) - 3:29

The A-side was remixed by Robert Kraushaar.

UK 12 Inch Vinyl - Warriors (Twelve Wild Disciples Mix) 12 ZTAS 25

A. Warriors (12 Wild Disciples Mix) - 9:45

B1. Warriors (Return) - 6:18

B2. Warriors (End) - 3:20

The A-side was remixed by Stephen Lovell and Trevor Horn with additional keyboards/synths by Andy Richards.

UK CD SIngle - Warriors (Compacted) CDZTT / ZCID 25

1. Warriors (Compacted) - 23:37

This single contains only one track listing but includes all of the following;

  1. "Warriors" (introduction) - 2:25
  2. "Warriors" (Twelve Wild Disciples Mix) - 9:45
  3. "Warriors of the Wasteland" [fewer lyrics] - 5:02
  4. "Warriors (Of the Wasteland)" - 3:57
  5. "Warriors" (Monopoly Re-Solution) ['rats in a cage'] - 2:21

UK Cassette Single - Warriors (Cassetted) ZTT / CTIS 25

A. Warriors (Cassetted) - 20:00

B. Warriors (Cassetted) - 20:00

The same track features on both sides and like the CD does not contain a full track listing. It includes the following;

  1. "A Matter of Life and Death" - 0:04
  2. "Warriors of the Wasteland" - instrumental - 2:59
  3. "Warriors of the Wasteland" - 7 inch version - 3:09
  4. "Warriors" (Twelve Wild Disciples) [instrumental] - 8:32
  5. "we're rats" (various noises from "Introduced") - 0:43
  6. "Warriors" (excerpts from "Return") - 1:27
  7. "Warriors" (Monopoly Re-Solution) ["rats in a cage"] - 3:03