Sunday, December 21, 2008

The only chart that counted: 1992

40 HWA Featuring Sonic The Hedgehog - Supersonic
1992 was a really, really great year for music, wasn't it? Remember this chart for the next time someone smugly tells you that the best music comes out of recessionary periods.

39 Mike Oldfield - Tattoo
From Tubular Bells II, which probably even Oldfield's forgotten. If this all looks a bit lame you should see some of the near misses. Philip Schofield, who took over from Jason Donovan in Joseph (and that's why Andrew Lloyd Webber went to prime time BBC1 this time), had his version of Close Every Door at 54, while at 61 was Achy Breaky Heart by Alvin And The Chipmunks With Billy Ray Cyrus. Perhaps he did it for Miley.

38 REM - Man On The Moon
If you've ever wondered, "Mr Fred Blassie in a breakfast mess" is a reference to My Breakfast With Blassie, a little known short film Andy Kaufman made with the titular wrestling manager. And the first line is apparently "Mott The Hoope and the Game Of Life".

37 Kylie Minogue - Celebration
It's on her greatest hits and in the setlist for most of her tours, but nobody seems to remember the Kool & the Gang cover was a single too. Don't worry, Confide In Me was next.

36 Wreckx-N-Effect - Rump Shaker
New Jack Swing represent!

35 Morrissey - Certain People I Know
Some men will always retain a fondness for rockabilly.

34 Kris Kross - It's A Shame
Mac Daddy and Daddy Mac, then. The "how do they go to the toilet?" duo are, it says here, back together and have tapped Jermaine Dupri for their reunion album. Don't hold your breath.

33 U2 - Who's Gonna Ride Your Wild Horses

32 Boyz II Men - Motownphilly
Only decent thing they ever did, says we.

31 Guns N' Roses - Yesterdays
Last of *seven* singles from the two Use Your Illusions, and thus the beginning of the end. Still, heh heh, maybe one day they'll even release Chinese Democ...sorry, what?

30 KWS Featuring The Trammps - Hold Back The Night
Please Don't Go hit coverers in appalling year for number ones team up with Philly disco also-rans. This can't be good.

29 SL2 - Way In My Brain/Drumbeats
They did On A Ragga Tip.

28 Nirvana - In Bloom
Here's your year grunge changed everything, then - it didn't get higher than this, but then it was the fourth single. The variety host at the start of the video, for the record, is The People's Court host Doug Llewelyn.

27 Slipstreem - We Are Raving
Well, you might be.

26 East Side Beat - Alive And Kicking
Yes, it is that one. Remember it this way.

25 The Wedding Present - No Christmas
The track with which they broke Elvis' record of having a hit single in every month of the year, which Elvis re-broke with that facile reissue campaign, the dead bastard.

24 Undercover - Never Let Her Slip Away
The one thing people like about Andrew Gold's original is the sea shanty beat of the thing. Replace that with generic pre-programmed beats and you're onto a loser.

23 Boyz II Men - End Of The Road
Not a decent thing they did. Fair to say it's outlasted Boomerang, the Eddie Murphy film it was recorded for.

22 Arrested Development - People Everyday
Multi-handed post-Daisy Age consciousness hip hop briefly bigger in Britain than the gangsta it set itself up as the antidote to.

21 Dina Carroll - So Close
The first of many future international superstars of Brit-soul.

20 The Lemonheads - Mrs Robinson
Evan hated it and doesn't do it at the end of It's A Shame About Ray revival gigs, but it's still the song that ensured he was a music weekly cause celebre for a bit (cf that whole deal with a photo of him and Courtney Love on a bed)

19 Lisa Stansfield - Someday (I'm Coming Back)
From the soundtrack of The Bodyguard, and what musical damage that film caused given nobody remembers its contents. Been quiet for a while, 'our' Lisa - apparently she's in that Keira Knightley vehicle The Edge Of Love, but oddly doesn't contribute to the soundtrack.

18 Simply Red - The Montreux EP
Montreux! Every year the BBC would ship up at their Jazz Festival for innumerable compilations of tasteful live music, and here's a live EP recorded at just such an event. We were meant to be grateful.

17 808 State And UB40 - One In Ten
The joker in any 'bands/songs with numbers in them' parlour game.

16 Gloria Estefan - Miami Hit Mix
Known as the Megamix in America. What kind of cross-cultural exchange have we set up as a musical brotherhood?

15 Stereo MC's - Step It Up
Possibly neurally altered baggy hip-hop party band who, in the days of Ebeneezer Goode, was just what was palatable to the buying public. Then took nine years to release a second album to little fanfare and seven before the third to negligible amounts.

14 Diana Ross - If We Hold On Together
All the facts and figures say she's released records since Chain Reaction but, X Factor favourite in waiting When You Tell Me That You Love Me aside, you'd be doing well to name any.

13 Heaven 17 - Temptation (Brothers In Rhythm Remix)
Again, great big thumping beat under everything and who cares about the nuances that made people like the original.

12 Cliff Richard - I Still Believe In You
We've just looked at a list of Cliff's 1990s singles, of which there are plenty, and apart from the two Christmas number ones we wouldn't be able to tell you what any of them sounded like. Although in fairness we can make a pretty solid guess.

11 The Prodigy - Out Of Space
Difficult to think at this Criminal Justice Bill/scary man in tunnel/Appleton sister distance that they were still seen as a novelty band then, Shut Up And Dance with a wider record collection.

10 Boney M - Boney M Megamix
Frank Farian, post-Milli Vanilli outing, reaches for a quick buck.

9 Rod Stewart - Tom Traubert's Blues (Waltzing Matilda)
A Tom Waits song, three years after Rod had had a big hit with Waits' Downtown Train. We await Sixteen Shells In A Thirty-O-Six in the American Songbook style.

8 Freddie Mercury - In My Defence
Two years after his death they were still sifting through the studio offcuts for releaseable material, both solo and for Queen. Presumably this one was junked after Freddie realised it was basically the opening slow bit of Don't Stop Me Now with added self-referentialism.

7 The Shamen - Phorever People
It doesn't even work on syllables.

6 Madonna - Deeper And Deeper
1992 was the year of the Sex book, a bloody strange promotional move even in these Paris Hilton sex tape days. Worth quite a bit these days, by all accounts. This was accompanied by a video in which Madge played Edie Sedgwick. There's a reference the tabloids of 1992 would immediately latch onto.

5 Take That - Could It Be Magic
When someone's next praising Barlow's pop mastery around you, quietly remind them that for a very long time they'd also do this sort of somersault friendly thing.

4 WWF Superstars - Slam Jam
Wrestling was having one of its periodical three month moments in the UK spotlight, only this time someone was, ahem, free thinking enough to get an album out of it, from which this forthright tribute from Bret The Hitman Hart, Macho Man Randy Savage, the British Bulldog and The Undertaker comes. Make ribald comment about Big Daddy, wonder why embedding's been disabled.

3 Charles And Eddie - Would I Lie To You?
Famously met when one carried a Marvin Gaye album onto a subway train, presumably during that short period when that sort of taste was considered outre.

2 Michael Jackson - Heal The World
For you and for me and for the entire human race. Not quite as easy as that, you'll find.

1 Whitney Houston - I Will Always Love You
For now and forever. Ten weeks, it clocked up, and about ten thousand imitators of that big melismatic note at the end.


Anonymous said...

Fun pro-wres fact: "Slam Jam" was the last ever top 40 single produced by Stock Aitken Waterman.

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