Thursday, February 12, 2009

Was it twenty years ago today?

In advance of the china anniversary tomorrow of an event that in its own unique way changed the way music is presented in Britain, which we'll deal with then, we thought we'd dig up the top 40 from this day in 1989. Believe us, these are a lot more difficult to write than it seems.

40 Monie Love - I Can Do This
Interesting stuff going on below the waterline this week, by the way, with entries and climbers between 41 and 61 for Pop Will Eat Itself's comic obsessed Can U Dig It, XTC's Mayor Of Simpleton, REM's Stand, the Sundays' Can't Be Sure and the wet leaf that is Dream Kitchen by the Frazier Chorus (fronted by Martin Freeman's brother, fact fans) Meanwhile, the first chart single by one of the early contenders in the by no means undersubscribed field of Big Future International Homegrown Rap Star failing to make a career of it.

39 Big Country - Peace In Our Time
Big Caledonian anthemry of the Fight This Problem school.

38 Level 42 - Tracie
Is there any call for this sort of thing in modern polite society?

37 Sam Brown - Stop
Big ol' showboating soul belter from Joe's daughter widely assumed to have a long and fulfilling career as an international star ahead. Last seen singing backup for Jools Holland's band.

36 Debbie Gibson - Lost In Your Eyes
35 Natalie Cole - I Live For Your Love
You don't seem to get balladeer females from America any more, as now they'd be thrown straight at an electro producer.

34 Luther Vandross - She Won't Talk To Me

33 Poison - Every Rose Has Its Thorn
Heavy rock bands doing unironic power ballads, another thing you don't get any more. Good.

32 Texas - I Don't Want A Lover
Just starting to show her age, Sharleen - that's not in a bitchy 3am Girls way, it's a fact of nature that her facial complexion is starting to catch up with her biology - tries out country-rock, if you believe a brief use of slide constitutes country elements. Co-founder Johnny McElhone used to be in Hipsway, whose Honey Thief we loved at the time. Of the age, clearly.

31 Def Leppard - Rocket
Not a power ballad. We have a suspicion Def Leppard are going to follow Iron Maiden back into wider popularity sooner or later and nobody will recall that half their songs sounded exactly like this.

30 Inner City - Good Life
29 Rob Base And DJ E-Z Rock - Get On The Dance Floor
28 Raze - Break 4 Love
1988, the year house music arrived on the scene. Top Of The Pops' ban on even mentioning the word 'acid' had already struck, for one. Kevin Saunderson's Inner City project has aged the best, obviously.

27 Boy Meets Girl - Waiting For A Star To Fall
Nobody's sampled this for years now! What's up?

26 Rick Astley - Hold Me In Your Arms
Although he was never noted in his heyday for his sense of humour, you have to say Rick took the whole Rolling business well - kept his head down when lesser men would have jumped to cash in, expressed the correct amount of bafflement when asked with a hint of scorn when it was taken to extremes, refused to play ball when his label completely missed the point and reissued his Greatest Hits, then finally popped up to put a seal on the whole thing at the Macy's parade. Of course it now transpires he's headlining the next Here And Now tour, so clearly showbiz curiosity has got the better of him. Wonder what Pete 'his voice is comparable to Dusty Springfield's' Waterman made of the phenomenon?

25 Mica Paris and Will Downing - Where Is The Love?
Downing was one of those 80s smooth soul brigade much forgotten now largely because they were prone to doing things like duetting with people like Mica Paris, if you get our drift. His biggest hit single was a cover of Coltrane's A Love Supreme. You'd never get that from Kevin Rudolf.

24 Neneh Cherry - Buffalo Stance
MIA at the Grammys ripped her style.

23 Hue And Cry - Looking For Linda

22 Milli Vanilli - Baby Don't Forget My Number
So hang on, if it was Frank Farian who sang all the bloke in Boney M's vocals - Farian went on to create Milli Vanilli, keep up - whose was the other male voice in the middle of Rasputin?

21 Brother Beyond - Be My Twin
The first video shown on the ITV Chart Show, perhaps the most useless piece of information ever written on STN, and perhaps Blogger as a whole. Poor Brother Beyond. You'd have thought anyone from Worlds Apart to E-Male to Billiam would have become more synonymous with forgettable boy band work, but no such luck.

20 Samantha Fox - I Only Wanna Be With You
"In 2009 Fox came third in a poll of the UK's most attractive older lady in Saga (UK) magazine, behind Davina McCall (2nd) and Amanda Redman first." Eat it raw, Mirren!

19 Will To Power - Baby I Love Your Way/Freebird
Nietzschen named, borderline ludicrous soft soul medley that somehow is less successfully committed than Big Mountain's version of the former. And Freebird?!

18 Adeva - Respect
And yes, here's another Big Future International Homegrown Soul Star who after a couple of singles turned out to be nothing of the sort, in retrospect because Respect, and it is that Respect, was never suited to a light house treatment.

17 Erasure - Crackers International EP
The one with Stop! on. Music to throw your arms about while dancing in a circle to.

16 Kylie And Jason - Especially For You
Somewhere along the line it became an accepted truth that they'd gone out for quite a while, after years of denial by both parties. Maybe they thought angels would die if they admitted it.

15 Sheena Easton - The Lover In Me
Sheena comebacks used to be regular affairs, but there's been little sight of her since the BBC-followed abortive attempt at the start of this decade which essentially consisted of her going "look at me being a gay icon here!" repeatedly.

14 Then Jericho - Big Area
With twenty years' experience it's hard to really add anything to bands who sound like this, except to wonder whether ProTools production really is that bad.

13 Simply Red - It's Only Love

12 Michael Ball - Love Changes Everything
Seaside Wurlitzer favourite from pre-Watson blue eyed light 'opera' housewives' choice. Lloyd Webber, natch.

11 Yazz - Fine Time
We'd rather sing along with AM, FM, all that jazz. The video is only worth considering to note the stovepipe hat of the jaunty keyboard player.

10 Fine Young Cannibals - She Drives Me Crazy
Acrobats, clowns, men in black and white suits, you remember. Roland Gift was always supposed to be this great singer/actor crossover, but Tim Booth harboured similar aspirations.

9 Bobby Brown - My Prerogative
Is it fair to say Britney's cover of this was her recording low point, given her prerogative was still to fail even greater?

8 Ten City - That's The Way Love Is
Chicago house not to be confused with Ten Sharp, who did piano ballad You in 1992.

7 Robert Howard And Kym Mazelle - Wait!
Dr Robert and Big Future International Homegrown Soul Star in early attempt at co-opting house style.

6 Morrissey - Last Of The Famous International Playboys
He of the inventive vinyl stack pays Krays... tribute? Cautionary tale telling? Who ever knows with Mozza's ever changing moods. Andy Rourke, Mike Joyce and Craig Gannon all played on it.

5 Roachford - Cuddly Toy
"Cuddly Toy, man! Tune of the eighties!" Thus spake a comfortably refreshed Liam Gallagher, according to John Harris, in a hotel bar immediately prior to the celebrated Wibbling Rivalry interview.

4 Holly Johnson - Love Train
Holly's solo career took off like a rocket with this and Fairlight-friendly American culture tickling Americanos and then completely collapsed, apparently over label difficulty. Green screen alert:

3 Roy Orbison - You Got It
He'd just died having finished a post-Travelling Wilburys album, including an early example of "young Mr Bono says he has a song for you here". More sentiment driving this than all round quality, produced by Jeff Lynne as all huge sounding records by elder statesmen were at this time, but it's better than all but the "Mercy!" bit of Oh Pretty Woman.

2 Mike And The Mechanics - The Living Years
The worst record ever made.

1 Marc Almond Featuring Gene Pitney - Something's Gotten Hold Of My Heart
One of the many, many singers to have collapsed backstage and been rushed to hospital for a vivid stomach pump meets Mr Forget To Mime On This Morning for a spectacular mismatch of vocal power. Nick Cave covered it a couple of years previously. Maybe that's where Almond got the idea from.


Ricardo said...

33 Poison - Every Rose Has Its Thorn

Heavy rock bands doing unironic power ballads, another thing you don't get any more. Good.

That's because hair metal has done a surgery and is now called country music. No, seriously!

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