Love the eighties. Wish we were all back living in 1986 on a permanent basis. Alas, this is not the case and I have to accept we will never regain that magical decade. So, the best way to get a dose of the good times is to indulge in some eighties music. This CD gathers some of the best moments from the eighties.
I adore Aha's 'The Sun Always Shines On TV.' It opens with a haunting synth which builds then explodes. The best bit is the instrumental breakdown where the hairs on your arms will stand on end as they hit soaring chord after soaring chord to deliver a lavish finale to the epic song.
The classy 'Wild Boys' by Duran Duran remains one of their best, in which Le Bon belts out the lyrics with youthful bravado, great chorus and a great mood in this one.
For something more poppy, Bros' 'When Will I Be Famous' does the trick. Matt Goss was an underrated vocalist, girly with his tones, but capable of pulling off some high notes. This was a bubblegum pop treat with a superb part in the song where the rhythm is swung, genius!
For those bleak moments, dip into Black's 'Wonderful Life' which is one of those knives out songs. His eerie vocals resonate through the song and make you feel like the world has come to an end. One of the most depressing songs in history, yet arty and potent vocally.
If you need something brighter with a casual folk like feel, head to Fairground Attraction's 'Perfect.' Eddi Reader's voice captured my heart at the time and her discreet charm and ability to deliver lustful lyrics with a warm melody work very well.
2 discs, 40 tracks will spoil you, the artwork is clever if not a little bland. I would have liked some more info on the inner sleeve though
What I am reviewing is the CD Fantastic 80s 2
This is a two disk set with mixed years of 80s music
Since I remember the 80s music a lot I thought I should do a review on some of my old CDs that I still listen to. This series of Fantastic 80s have three volumes and I consider this one to be the best out of the three.
This had twenty songs on each disk with varied artists and years so it runs quite smooth through giving you a mixture.
Some of my old favourites are on here which is why I have chosen this album to review, I certainly remember Kylie with her first song I should be so lucky. This seems a long way ago now, and also Five Star who came from Essex.
All of these were hits if they hit number one or not, and there were a few artists who never done that many songs but were overnight wonders.
This has a lot of songs on with a lot of choice and not just set to a certain few years as it spans from 1980-1989.
I shall not go through the history of all the artists on here, but so many of these deserve credit.
I shall now go through the disks :
The first disk contains :
1. Club Tropicana by WHAM - This single was released in 1983 just as the band was taking off and this was probably one of their biggest hits that made them, this had a bright colourful music video for the time.
2. The sun always shines on TV - A-HA - This single was released in 1985 and was a big hit for this band and probably their most profitable. This was a really good song and was a hit at all the disko's
3. The wild boys - DURAN DURAN - My favourite groups single was released in 1984 just as the boys were making a name for theirselfs in the pop charts. This was a very upbeat track and had a great video to it. This was released on their live Arena album recorded around the world in 1984
4. There must be an angel playing with my heart - EURYTHMICS - This was my favourite song by this band, this was released in 1984 and I believe the bands best ever song
5. Everybody wants to rule the world - TEARS FOR FEARS - Another upbeat song that had everybody dancing at the disko's. Released in 1985 this was the bands best known song.
6. The only way is up - YAZZ AND THE PLASTIC POPULATION - I remember this song well as I had the album, this was released and soon became number one in 1988. It had a very catchy tune and it was such a shame the band only had a couple of hits then sort of disappeared.
7. She drives me crazy - FINE YOUNG CANNIBALS - Another 1988 release was very popular at the time and has a very catchy tune that you will probably hum for ages after hearing it. Great song.
8. Venus - BANANARAMA - This group had lots of hits in the 80's but everybody remembers this song, I didn't think it was their greatest but it done very well in the charts and another good dancing track.
9. Nineteen - PAUL HARDCASTLE - Another I remember very well, this song is all about the Vietnam war and the life expectancy of the average soldier. This was number one for weeks in 1985
10. Pump up the volume - MARS - This was released in 1987 and I think was a one hit wonder for this band. Not one of my favourites
11. I should be so lucky - KYLIE MINOGUE - Kylie's first hit that also was number one for about a month, she released this in 1987 and has never looked back. She has changed her image over the years but if it had not been for this song we might have never heard from her again. Well done Kylie.
12. When will I be famous - BROS - The popular group released this number one hit in 1987 and one of their best known songs. The group were very good at the time before the split.
13. Showing out - MEL AND KIM - It was such a shame that they only had two hits together before Mel passed away. Both sisters done really well with this song and the video. This was a great hit in 1986.
14. Relax - FRANKIE GOES TO HOLLYWOOD - This was the bands first biggest and number one hit, released in 1983 it was well known around the world and had huge merchandise as well. Great upbeat song.
15. Sometimes - ERASURE - This was released in 1986 and one of the best songs from the group.
16. Perfect - FAIRGROUND ATTRACTION - This was released in 1988 and a mixture between a slow paced and upbeat rythum. It did become number one but not one of my favourites.
17. Church of the poison mind - CULTURE CLUB - A great hit from Boy George and the band in 1983, a great tune and colourful video I can't really believe it's been that long !!
18. I don't want to be a hero - JOHNNY HATES JAZZ - Can't really give you much on this one as I can't remember it that well, but listning to it sounds like a slowish song with good lyrics.
19. The safely dance - MEN WITHOUT HATS - An upbeat song from this group who only had a few hits then seemed to disappear, they were very good at the time. This was released in 1983.
20. I eat cannibals - TOTO COELO - A one hit wonder by this group, a very good fast paced song though and highly different, had some great and unusual lyrics.
The second disk contains :
1. Love action (I believe in love) - THE HUMAN LEAGUE - A catchy mixed rythum song which was very good for the band and worked well at the time. They had quite a few hits and this was the one of theirs that I remember the most. Released in 1981.
2. New song - HOWARD JONES - probably the worst track on the entire album, a one hit wonder again but god knows how !! released in 1983.
3. Nothing's gonna stop us now - STARSHIP- This was a slow paced hit from this band who had a few hits but were good at the time. Released in 1985.
4. Take my breath away-BERLIN- A slow song and very good lyrics, the radios still play this song today. Released in 1986.
5. Wonderful life - BLACK - Another mixed slow and fast paced song, this was also another great hit for the time with great lyrics and deserved to be at the top of the charts.
6. Gold - SPANDAU BALLET - Apart from Duran Duran's song I think for me this is the best song on the entire album. A very heartfelt thought out song with the best lyrics anybody could think of. Was a massive hit in 1983.
7. Love on your side - THOMPSON TWINS - A good band at the time with their best hit well known for an upbeat feeling.
8. Loco in Acapulco - FOUR TOPS - This was famous from the film soundtrack "Buster" at the time. Was a good song but did get on your nerves when hearing it on the radio and TV all of the time. Released in 1988.
9. Come back and stay - PAUL YOUNG - Another well paced hit for this talented singer, was probably his best ever. Released in 1983.
10. Love and pride - KING - A fast paced song for this group and a huge hit in 1984. They never had that many top ten hits but this was no doubt their best ever.
11. Somewhere in my heart - AZTEC CAMERA - This was one of the bands best remembered singles. Released in 1987.
12. The story of the blues (part 1)-THE MIGHY WAH ! - I cannot give you much information on this band as I didn't know them that well but have been informed they were very big at the time. RFeleased in 1982.
13. Feels like heaven - FICTION FACTORY - One hit wonder in 1983 for this band.
14. Echo beach - MARTHA AND THE MUFFINS - a very good upbeat song in 1980 and a shame the band never stayed around for a few more hits.
15. The final countdown - EUROPE - A very well know song for 1986 and still known now. Another mixture of fast and slow lyrics and has a good beat to it too.
16. System Addict - FIVE STAR - I remember this band well, they had a number of hits and this was their first. They released this very fast paced song in 1985 with a Michael Jackson style of the time. Very good.
17. Antmusic - ADAM AND THE ANTS - Marvelous song to this very well known group who seemed to be about for ages. Was number one as I think were all of the rest of them. Great stuff. Released in 1980.
18. The land of make believe - BUCKS FIZZ - After their eurovision win they released a few more and I think this was the next one after Making your mind up. It was a hit but the group never really lasted that long. Released in 1981.
19. Japanese boy - ANEKA - A fast paced song which was I think a one hit wonder for this group. Please tell me if I am wrong. Released in 1981.
20. Video killed the radio star - THE BUGGLES-A song from 1979 that no matter how old you are you have heard this one. A massive hit and rightly so.
What I thought :
I loved hearing all of these good old 80s songs again and I found myself singing out with the tunes at almost every song !
There are some of my old favourites artists on here such as Duran Duran, Kylie, Yazz and the plastic population, Paul Young, Five star, Adam and the Ants and loads that I remember.
I thought that the transfer of the songs was very good on all of the tracks and it only seemed like yesterday I had heard them in the charts.
There were some songs on here that I didnt like that much as I couldnt remember them or just never liked them in the first place. However I found that some I hadnt heard of I enjoyed a lot like I eat cannibals by Toto Coelo. I found it quite an amusing track and it had a very catchy tune.
I also liked the way that there was no preference with the CD with any artist, this album gives everybody a chance for a different variety and not just certain selections of certain artists that some albums seem to cater for.
What I did find very perculiar however was the absence of David Bowie from any of these 80s albums I have, as he had so many hits in the 80s and in my opinion one of the greatest artists of our time. The only thing I can think of is that he never gave his permission. It would have been good to have him included on some of these.
For a two disk set I found that the inlay cover wasnt all that good and only listed the tracks. There was no history, nothing about how this was set out, the sound, or if any of these tracks hit the top ten ! It was a good job I know that quite a lot of these did otherwise I wouldnt have had a clue what any of these songs were like.
However the front cover was good with a picture of two Rubix cubes on the front which was all the rage at the time.
I thought that the transfer of the sound was done very well according to how old some of these songs actually were, and thought they had been cleaned up very well for this CD release.
The artwork on the disks was a bit bland with only a printing of Fantastic 80s 2 in writing on blue backgrounds.
Anyway If you were around or like 80s music then I do recommend this album as I have found that this has a lot of the hits and some rather obscure ones that are not on that many 80s CDs
Hope you have all enjoyed this review.
Disc #1 Tracklisting
1 Club Tropicana - Wham
2 Sun Always Shines On TV - A-Ha
3 Wild Boys - Duran Duran
4 There Must Be An Angel (Playing With My Heart) - Eurythmics
5 Everybody Wants To Rule The World - Tears For Fears
6 Only Way Is Up - Yazz
7 She Drives Me Crazy - Fine Young Cannibals
8 Venus - Bananarama
9 Nineteen - Hardcastle, Paul
10 Pump Up The Volume - MARRS
11 I Should Be So Lucky - Minogue, Kylie
12 When Will I Be Famous - Bros
13 Showing Out (Get Fresh At The Weekend) - Mel & Kim (1)
14 Relax - Frankie Goes To Hollywood
15 Sometimes - Erasure
16 Perfect - Fairground Attraction
17 Church Of The Poison Mind - Culture Club
18 I Don't Want To Be A Hero - Johnny Hates Jazz
19 Safety Dance - Men Without Hats
20 I Eat Cannibal - Toto Coelo
21 Love Action (I Believe In Love) - Human League
22 New Song - Jones, Howard (1)
23 Nothing's Gonna Stop Us Now - Starship
24 Take My Breath Away - Berlin
25 Wonderful Life - Black (1)
26 Gold - Spandau Ballet
27 Love On Your Side - Thompson Twins
28 Loco In Acapulco - Four Tops
29 Come Back And Stay - Young, Paul
30 Love And Pride - King (1)
31 Somewhere In My Heart - Aztec Camera
32 Story Of The Blues - Mighty Wah
33 Feels Like Heaven - Fiction Factory
34 Echo Beach - Martha & The Muffins
35 Final Countdown - Europe (1)
36 System Addict - Five Star (1)
37 Ant Music - Adam & The Ants
38 Land Of Make Believe - Bucks Fizz
39 Japanese Boy - Aneka
40 Video Killed The Radio Star - Buggles