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Now That's What I Call Music! 25 Years

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Genre: Compilation / Artist: Various Artists / Box set / Audio CD released 2008-10-27 at EMI

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      04.09.2009 15:53
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      great compilation

      Now that's what I call music 25 years is a compilation of 25 years of music basically, I always think when they do the usual now that's what I call music how on earth did they choose what songs to put there, so this one over a massive 25 years must have been a really difficult task and even though I'm sure they'll be people thinking how come this song didn't get on it, they have done a good job none the less and this is a fantastic album to look back on some amazing songs.

      The box set compilation album is made up of three disks, the first two with 19 and the last with 22 song making a quite impressive total of 60 songs altogether, however I promise that you will know what all of them are, or at least what most of them are.

      The first CD kicks the album off with queens hit I want to break free, a fantastic song and one of my favourite queens songs too. It also features Michael Jackson's thriller, as well as other huge hit songs from the 80's. That's the great thing about this album. The first disk is from the 80's the second from the 90's and the third from the millennium or the 2000's.

      The second disk is more the music I remember when I was growing up then, the 90s. It has some great bands on here such as the opening R.E.M, and oasis rocking the album to the pop groups boy zone, backstreet boys and even a track from Robbie Williams.

      And the last cd is one from the music of today basically, it opens with James Blunt you beautiful which I don't really like and I'm not sure really deserves a place on here but I'm sure they'll be people who disagree. It also features tracks from the killers, Duffy and the all new take that.

      Disc: 1
      1. Queen - I Want To Break Free
      2. Wham! - Wake Me Up Before You Go Go
      3. Eurythmics - There Must Be An Angel (Playing With My Heart)
      4. The Police - Every Breath You Take
      5. U2 - Pride (In The Name Of Love)
      6. Peter Gabriel - Sledgehammer
      7. RUN-DMC feat. Aerosmith - Walk This Way
      8. Cameo - Word Up
      9. Ray Parker Junior - Ghostbusters
      10. Michael Jackson - Thriller
      11. Diana Ross - Chain Reaction
      12. Phil Collins - You Can't Hurry Love
      13. Frankie Goes To Hollywood - Two Tribes
      14. Pet Shop Boys - It's A Sin
      15. Duran Duran - The Reflex
      16. Feargal Sharkey - A Good Heart
      17. David Bowie - Modern Love
      18. Culture Club - Karma Chameleon
      19. UB40 - Red Red Wine

      Disc: 2
      1. R.E.M. - Everybody Hurts
      2. Robbie Williams - Angels
      3. Boyzone - No Matter What
      4. The Beautiful South - A Little Time
      5. Oasis - Wonderwall
      6. Natalie Imbruglia - Torn
      7. Wet Wet Wet - Love Is All Around
      8. Tina Turner - The Best
      9. Belinda Carlisle - Heaven Is A Place On Earth
      10. The Proclaimers - I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles)
      11. James - Sit Down
      12. New Radicals - You Get What You Give
      13. Shania Twain - That Don't Impress Me Much
      14. Cher - Believe
      15. Spice Girls - Wannabe
      16. Britney Spears - Baby One More Time
      17. Backstreet Boys - I Want It That Way
      18. Roxette - It Must Have Been Love
      19. Sinéad O'Connor - Nothing Compares 2 U

      Disc: 3
      1. James Blunt - You're Beautiful
      2. Take That - Patience
      3. Duffy - Mercy
      4. Mark Ronson feat. Amy Winehouse - Valerie
      5. OutKast - Hey Ya!
      6. Nelly Furtado - Maneater
      7. Gnarls Barkley - Crazy
      8. MIKA - Grace Kelly
      9. Kaiser Chiefs - Ruby
      10. The Killers - Somebody Told Me
      11. Sugababes - Push The Button
      12. Katy Perry - I Kissed A Girl
      13. Kylie Minogue - Can't Get You Out Of My Head
      14. Tony Christie - (Is This The Way To) Amarillo
      15. Rihanna feat. Jay-Z - Umbrella
      16. Black Eyed Peas - My Humps
      17. Timbaland feat. OneRepublic - Apologize
      18. Justin Timberlake - Cry Me A River
      19. Coldplay - Fix You
      20. Paolo Nutini - Last Request
      21. Will Young - Leave Right Now
      22. Westlife - You Raise Me Up

      This album is really a mix, your not going to like every song on here but I think the albums is great value for money and it would make a good gift to anyone who like their music. Its also a good one to play in a long car journey and remember and celebrate some of the great music we have all bee blessed with over the years.

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      • More +
        17.02.2009 14:47
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        great value

        The Now albums are always a safe bet for a good listen, this one does something a little different though, spread over three discs it gathers hits from over 25 years. Starting with the older material and working towards some of the newer hits.

        On this album:

        Disc one gets off to a good start, throwing in the anthemic Queen track. It is a rousing and amusing song with sterling vocals as usual from Mercury. Head for the camp disco delights of 'It's A Sin' which will make the spine tingle as we have the clock countdown bit on it. I have always loved The Pet Shop Boys and this is perhaps their finest hour. For a slice of pure eighties, listen to Cameo, that guy's whiney voice might grate but the beat on it works everytime.

        Onto disc two, with slightly newer material. Natalie Imbruglia rips things up with the stunning 'Torn' which puts her sexy vocals over a guitar melody, carving an original and emotive pop song in the process. Also head for the wonderful Tina Turner, belting out 'The Best.' This is one of those hairbrush diva moments and a chance to strut around the bedroom in a tight skirt. For pure pop finesse check out the Spice Girls doing 'Wannabe' which will bring those memories of them leaping over tables flooding back.

        Finally, disco three brings things up to date. I love The Killers and 'Somebody Told Me' is an outright indie rock anthem. Bright vocals and a guitar hook to launch it with a bang. For some feisty female antics, check out Katy Perry being curt and childish on 'I Kissed A Girl.' There are some other big number ones here in the form of Duffy and Mika.

        Overall:

        Great value for money, loads of hits, some of the older stuff is quite cheesy but the balance between the discs is quite good and there is a mixture of stuff to amuse most listeners

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      • More +
        31.01.2009 13:10
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        Overall, an immense compilation album

        26 years ago, an album entitled Now That's What I Call Music hit the charts - a new concept, combining the best tracks from the charts at the time, combined in one album. From its success, a second compilation was produced, and a third, and this has continued through until now, and we have just seen the release of Now 71. Last year, to celebrate 25 years of Now That's What I Call Music compilations, a compilation of the compilations was released, entitled 'Now That's What I Call Music! 25 Years' as a celebration.

        The compilation album has, throughout the years, been purely know as 'Now....' and then the number, missing out the 'That's What I Call Music' part, as it's a bit of a mouthful, and a lot to write or type, thus the albums have been known as, for example, Now 28 or Now 51, etc.

        Now 25 Years has a glorious selection of music, although I'm not sure about some of the tracks they have included. There are 3 discs, and the first one encompasses the 1980s. This is a great disc (19 tracks), with Queen's I Want To Break Free kicking it off immediately followed by Wham! and Wake Me Up Before You Go Go. This disc has a lot of 80s cheese on it, and some of my other favourites from it include Jacko's Thriller and the Ghostbusters theme tune by Ray Parker Jr. I wasn't a fan of Bowie's Modern Love, but there are some belters on here, and U2's Pride and the very cheesy Feargal Sharkey with A Good Heart are surprisingly well placed, as are the rest of the tracks in a rather strange but effective combo of 80s music.

        The second disc (19 tracks) features tracks from the 90s, and although I love the track, the depressing Everybody Hurts from REM would not necessarily have been my choice for the first track. However, Robbie Williams' huge ballad Angels hits us straight away in track 2, and is followed by some excellent music. Wonderwall from Oasis is naturally on there, and the cult Proclaimers' track 500 Miles features in the middle. However, although the majority of these make me smile and remember my school days and a little of my University experience, they are curious choices and I wouldn't have said the best options. A Little Time from The Beautiful South is a great song, as is You Get What You Give by the New Radicals, but I wouldn't have said they were worthy of a place amongst the best of 25 years of music. Cher's Believe is also a strange addition, I wasn't a fan at all of this track. However, the disc does end with a series of huge chart successes from Britney, the Backstreet Boys and Roxette, so all's well that ends well.

        Disc 3 (22 tracks) takes us into the Noughties, and the playlist here shows how we have seen some great music in the past 8 years of this decade so far. I wouldn't have opened the disc with James Blunt's You're Beautiful, but it is a lovely track, and is followed by the massive comeback single Patience from Take That. Thrown in some Duffy, MIKA's Grace Kelly and Katy Perry telling us how she kissed a girl and liked it, and you have yourself a good mix. This music is very much going with the flow and showing how general popularity of chart music has moved away from generalised pop music towards a more 'cool' and trendier 'street' style of music, with the Black Eyed Peas' My Humps, Justin Timberlake, Nelly Furtado's relaunch with Maneater and Rihanna's Umbrella-ella-ella all featuring. The Kasier Chiefs' Ruby and Sugababes' Push The Button make it on there, and Outkast's extremely catchy Hey Ya is worthy of a place. The final track on the disc and indeed the whole album is a very haunting and moving track. Coldplay's Fix You was one of the most successful hits, and while it can be regarded as depressing, it's lyrics and crescendoing chorus make this a classic.

        The 'Now' team have done a very good job. I appreciate it is very hard to conform to everyone's tastes, particularly when trying to make a compilation of the best music from 25 years of hits. Hats off to them. There were a couple of tracks I thought to be out of place, but then I am sure others will likely think the same of tracks I believe would be the first choices on there, so I musn't criticise. The 3 disc album is well worth getting, as it features some of the best chart music over the past 25 years, and you can listen through the years as the discs take you through the 80s, 90s, and what we have had so far of the Noughties.

        Now That's What I Call Music! 25 Years is available currently from amazon.co.uk for £11.98, a good price when you consider you're getting 60 of the best tracks from the past 25 years on three discs. Recommended!

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        • More +
          01.01.2009 22:17
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          Outstanding hits, exceptional value - buy it at all costs!

          In 1983 a novelty album topped the Christmas charts - a compilation of the very best pop and rock of the day, selected by Polygram/Virgin/EMI and lavished across two (yes, two!) vinyl records. The branding was distinctive from day one, being a retro 1920s advertisement showing a pig entranced by the singing of a cockerel. The strap-line said it all: "Now that's what I call music!" At a stroke, one of the most addictively collectible and relentlessly populist series of music compilation CDs was born.

          Today our porcine hero is back with a 25 year celebration of the NOW legend. The compilation does what it says on the tin - it provides a triple CD extravaganza with one disc apiece for the Eighties, Nineties and Noughties. The pig, clad in shades and headphones - the kind of icon that really was acceptable in the 80s - smugly sits with one trotter aside the chunky NOW Logo that has adorned every compilation since NOW20. He might as well be smug, for the series must surely remain a cash cow (to mix animal metaphors). Even though the original economic logic - all those songs for the price of a few singles! - has been undercut by the internet and iTunes revolution, the albums continue to sell very well. EMI may be in the throes of a radical corporate turnaround under the securitisation wizards of Terra Firma Capital Partners, but the NOW brand must remain one of the corporate jewels in the crown.

          I have come almost to regard these albums as an official transcript of the chart-toppers of the age, a kind of voluminous pseudo-authoritative reference point for the would-be chart historian. Of course if you are expecting NOW! 25 Years to contain edgy, alternative or controversial tracks, please look elsewhere. Every stadium-filler, floor-filler and overplayed radio anthem is here, often drenched in an EU-sized mountain of cheese. But it's fabulous. Some of these tracks really are diamonds that sound just as perfect decades later and will doubtless do so in 2029 or 2039. This is a truly fantastic collection designed to invoke recognition, nostalgia and spontaneous karaoke in just about anyone from age 20 to 40. Bring on all the choons!

          I really enjoyed not only the music but the centrefold of the CD booklet which shows every single NOW album cover since the dawn of time. Personally I preferred the more thematically varied and adventurous Eighties designs, before the monolithic NOW logo, a design of almost Twentieth-Century Fox solidity, arrived with its imprimatur of authority.

          The majority of readers will know, and doubtless be over-familiar, with virtually all of these tracks. Here is the full listing, enlivened with grossly partial, subjective and critical commentary from my good self. The CD, by the way, can be obtained from Amazon for the truly bargainous price of £11.98. Buy it at all costs!

          *** Disc 1 - The Magnificent Eighties***

          1. Queen - I Want To Break Free
          Eighties soaring power-rock - I love it.

          2. Wham! - Wake Me Up Before You Go Go
          Go on, admit it - you've danced to this too. Catchier than a cold.

          3. Eurythmics - There Must Be An Angel (Playing With My Heart)
          Ethereal synthesized beauty from Ms Lennox and Mr Stewart.

          4. The Police - Every Breath You Take
          A landmark track, though I preferred the version by Mr. Diddy myself.

          5. U2 - Pride (In The Name of Love)
          Well of course it's great, but it does drag on and is too earnest for my liking. Lacks the urgency and drive of the Joshua Tree era -now why aren't those songs on the disc?

          6. Peter Gabriel - Sledgehammer
          Every time I listen to this, I feel like I'm in Miami and it's 1986 all over again. Incidentally, this is the greatest music video of the age.

          7. RUN-DMC feat. Aerosmith - Walk This Way
          Seminal, magnificent and groundbreaking - it fused rock metal and hip-hop decades ahead of the rest.

          8. Cameo - Word Up
          Funk masterpiece, although the singer's red codpiece on Top Of the Pops (1986) remains one of the era's more questionable fashion statements.

          9. Ray Parker Junior - Ghostbusters
          Who ya gonna call? Bill Murray?

          10. Michael Jackson - Thriller
          Overblown, overhyped and over-produced, but still epic and awesome. It's like trying to imagine modern fiction without Dan Brown.

          11. Diana Ross - Chain Reaction
          One of the finest and unduly forgotten hooks of the Eighties. My favourite track on the first CD.

          12. Phil Collins - You Can't Hurry Love
          Not my personal favourite, but he was a huge star of the era.

          13. Frankie Goes to Hollywood - Two Tribes
          Ground-breaking with a classic intro - "The air attack warning sounds like. This is the sound". You know the one.

          14. Pet Shop Boys - It's A Sin.
          Monumental synth extravaganza from the kings of deadpan electronica.

          15. Duran Duran - The Reflex
          One of my least favourite of their opus, although let's face, it wouldn't have been the Eighties without the lads.

          16. Feargal Sharkey - A Good Heart
          More hooks than a meat factory. What a classic, under-rated tune!

          17. David Bowie - Modern Love
          I know he's a genius, but if it's later than Ziggy I'm not interested.

          18. Culture Club - Karma Chameleon
          An escapist frolic of a song which loses its charm with repetition.

          19. UB40 - Red Red Wine
          Reggae masterpiece from the Brummie lads.


          ***Disc: 2 - The Nineties (approximately).***


          1. R.E.M. Everybody Hurts
          I have been a fan for decades, but as an IRS-years purist I cannot rate this track as a stand-out. Still I know other people who claim it changed their lives.

          2. Robbie Williams - Angels
          "Down the waterfall, wherever life may take me..." Is there anyone who doesn't love this gem of a song? Guy Chambers, by the way, is a genius.

          3. Boyzone - No Matter What
          Too ponderous for my tastes, but others label it a classic.

          4. The Beautiful South: A Little Time
          Paul Heaton and crew at their withering best with sarcasm as sharp as razors. I hope this song really did get the PRS cheques flowing in.

          5. Oasis - Wonderwall
          Familiar to millions, some might say. This was and always will be the song of my generation. I can't even begin to think about it objectively.

          6. Natalie Imbruglia - Torn
          A frail, harmonic and beautiful tune. Outstanding.

          7. Wet Wet Wet - Love Is All Around
          Actually, I preferred the R.E.M version on MTV Unplugged, but who am I to argue with millions of cinema-goers?

          8. Tina Turner - The Best
          Forget the David Brent impression in Series 2 of "The Office"; this is a thoroughbred of a song.

          9. Belinda Carlisle - Heaven Is A Place On Earth
          A slice of pure pop perfection from this gifted Californian. Melodic, polished and energetic - she has my vote any day.

          10. The Proclaimers - I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles)
          Great pub singalong from the bros. Reid, though inferior to "Letter From America" in my humble opinion.

          11. James - Sit Down
          The greatest song on the album, bar none. A slice of pure angst-ridden theatrical genius of Wagnerian proportions. Epic.

          12. New Radicals - You Get What You Give
          Nice ditty.

          13. Shania Twain - That Don't Impress Me Much
          Go girl! The claws are out!

          14. Cher - Believe
          The swansong classic. Do you believe in life after love?

          15. Spice Girls - Wannabe
          More a mass cultural event than a song. If you can remember 1996, you weren't there.

          16. Britney Spears - Baby One More Time
          Thus begins the legend that launched a million celebrity gossip magazines.

          17. Backstreet Boys - I Want It That Way
          A pleasantly harmonic song that is apparently a boyband classic.

          18. Roxette - It Must Have Been Love
          One of the greatest ballads of the 1990s. Roxette are grossly overdue a major revival and a re-evaluation showing them to be Swedish popmeisters in the greatest traditions of Abba. It will happen. Watch this space.

          19. Sinead O'Connor - Nothing Compares To U
          A masterpiece, though the song for me is never the same without the stunning video with its "L'Annee Derniere a Marienbad" filmic quality and its agonising close-ups of the weeping Sinead. Just listen to those sublime lyrics again - "All the flowers in the back yard, died when you went away..." The writer, Prince, is truly gifted.



          ***Disc 3 - The Modern World***

          1. James Blunt - You're Beautiful
          A classic love it/hate it track - as I know you will already have made up your mind, I will remain silent.

          2. Take That - Patience
          A monumental return to prominence from (in my view) the greatest boyband of all time.

          3. Duffy - Mercy
          The edgy, authentic Sixties diva is back. Don't mess.

          4. Mark Ronson feat. Amy Winehouse - Valerie
          Forget everything else. The girl can sing.

          5. OutKast - Hey Ya!
          A pure energy surge of fun, positivity and ice-cold lyrical flow - "What's cooler than cool?"

          6. Nelly Furtado - ManEater
          Very danceable, very catchy, very successful.

          7. Gnarls Barkley - Crazy
          Impressively slick, hook-laden, smooth and funky - a well-deserved smash.

          8. MIKA - Grace Kelly
          Freddie's back, and this ain't Elm Street. A superb, superb track.

          9. Kaiser Chiefs - Ruby
          If the century has given us one great singalong anthem, this is it.

          10. The Killers - Somebody Told Me
          A high-voltage power surge from the kings of Vegas. A genuine masterpiece with a lyrical intensity and raw energy that make you realise this is a once-in-a-decade track.

          11. Sugababes - Push the Button
          Enjoyable, poppy and bright song with the slickest production values around. Reminds me of Christmas parties back in 2005.

          12. Katy Perry - I kissed a girl
          If you spent 2008 on Mars, you may have missed this track.

          13. Kylie Minogue - Can't Get You Out of My Head
          All hail the Princess. That's Cathy Dennis and her superlative song-writing skills, by the way.

          14. Tony Christie - Is This The Way to Amarillo
          I'm probably one of the few people on Dooyoo who have actually visited Amarillo. It's really not all that.

          15. Rihanna feat. Jay-Z - Umbrella
          In 2007 it rained more than ever, but this luscious and ice-cold track was there for our amusement. In anticipation of precipitation...

          16. Black Eyed Peas - My Humps
          From radical social commentary to extolling the virtues of Fergie's "humps", all in the space of just two albums. Still, I did pick up the Elephunk album for £2.50 at the Woolworth's liquidation sale and it's rather good.

          17. Timbaland feat OneRepublic - Apologize
          A soulful, epic and accomplished track fusing the talents of the hip-hop uber-wizard and the popular band.

          18. Justin Timberlake - Cry Me A River
          He is surely the greatest of all the Mouseketeers.

          19. Coldplay - Fix You
          It's like Marmite.

          20. Paolo Nutini - Last Request
          An unusual choice for the album, as it could almost be called alternative.

          21. Will Young - Leave Right Now
          A beautiful and emotionally resonant track from a gifted musician.

          22. Westlife - You Raise Me Up
          A suitably poptastic and anthemic end to this superlative and fabulous collection.


          (c) Paul/EasternStar 2008. This review will also appear on Ciao.

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        • Product Details

          Disc #1 Tracklisting
          1 Queen - I Want To Break Free
          2 Wham! - Wake Me Up Before You Go Go
          3 Eurythmics - There Must Be An Angel (Playing With My Heart)
          4 The Police - Every Breath You Take
          5 U2 - Pride (In The Name Of Love)
          6 Peter Gabriel - Sledgehammer
          7 RUN-DMC feat. Aerosmith - Walk This Way
          8 Cameo - Word Up
          9 Ray Parker Junior - Ghostbusters
          10 Michael Jackson - Thriller
          11 Diana Ross - Chain Reaction
          12 Phil Collins - You Can't Hurry Love
          13 Frankie Goes To Hollywood - Two Tribes
          14 Pet Shop Boys - It's A Sin
          15 Duran Duran - The Reflex
          16 Feargal Sharkey - A Good Heart
          17 David Bowie - Modern Love
          18 Culture Club - Karma Chameleon
          19 UB40 - Red Red Wine

          Disc #2 Tracklisting
          1 R.E.M. - Everybody Hurts
          2 Robbie Williams - Angels
          3 Boyzone - No Matter What
          4 The Beautiful South - A Little Time
          5 Oasis - Wonderwall
          6 Natalie Imbruglia - Torn
          7 Wet Wet Wet - Love Is All Around
          8 Tina Turner - The Best
          9 Belinda Carlisle - Heaven Is A Place On Earth
          10 The Proclaimers - I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles)
          11 James - Sit Down
          12 New Radicals - You Get What You Give
          13 Shania Twain - That Don't Impress Me Much
          14 Cher - Believe
          15 Spice Girls - Wannabe
          16 Britney Spears - Baby One More Time
          17 Backstreet Boys - I Want It That Way
          18 Roxette - It Must Have Been Love
          19 Sinéad O'Connor - Nothing Compares 2 U

          Disc #3 Tracklisting
          1 James Blunt - You're Beautiful
          2 Take That - Patience
          3 Duffy - Mercy
          4 Mark Ronson feat. Amy Winehouse - Valerie
          5 OutKast - Hey Ya!
          6 Nelly Furtado - Maneater
          7 Gnarls Barkley - Crazy
          8 MIKA - Grace Kelly
          9 Kaiser Chiefs - Ruby
          10 The Killers - Somebody Told Me
          11 Sugababes - Push The Button
          12 Katy Perry - I Kissed A Girl
          13 Kylie Minogue - Can't Get You Out Of My Head
          14 Tony Christie - (Is This The Way To) Amarillo
          15 Rihanna feat. Jay-Z - Umbrella
          16 Black Eyed Peas - My Humps
          17 Timbaland feat. OneRepublic - Apologize
          18 Justin Timberlake - Cry Me A River
          19 Coldplay - Fix You
          20 Paolo Nutini - Last Request
          21 Will Young - Leave Right Now
          22 Westlife - You Raise Me Up