From the Vault...


"Music From The Edge Of Heaven"

© Columbia Records


track listing
  • The Edge Of Heaven
  • Battlestations
  • I'm Your Man
  • Wham! Rap '86
  • A Different Corner
  • Blue (live in China)
  • Where Did Your
    Heart Go
  • Last Christmas

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    "Music From The Edge Of Heaven"

    George Michael and Andrew Ridgeley, better known as Wham!, was one of many 1980s dance/pop duo/groups. Happy-go-lucky in sound, and appealing to people (especially the younger women) of all ages. Wham!'s farewell album, Music From The Edge Of Heaven, released in 1986, is a well-done album for those who enjoy the dance/pop music of the 1980s.

    "The Edge Of Heaven" (considered the title track) opens up the album, and you can't help but sing along the la-de-la's in the song. "Battlestations" defines the true 1980s pop/dance sound, and if it isn't a regular at the dance clubs back then, or even now, it should be.

    Like "The Edge Of Heaven" -- "I'm Your Man" -- both songs were regular radio airplay hits. "I'm Your Man" is the extended long version, as in most album selections. And, like any Wham! song, it's dancable, has a happy sound, and is 1980s dance/pop.

    "Wham! Rap '86" -- OK, let's face it, Wham! was much better at recording pop/dance numbers, like the previous three songs on this album, likewise their famous songs from Make It Big: "Careless Whisper" and "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go." Having the 1980s dance/pop beat, George and Andrew throw in some white-rap lyrics, yet it just doesn't appeal as a song that would get the repeat button pushed repeatedly, nor requested (on radio and/or clubs) as much as any of the standard well-known Wham! favorites.

    On the "getting the repeat button" topic, "A Different Corner" is a great, beautiful ballad, getting my nod of approval as the best song on this album. Originally, when this song first came out as a single, it was credited to George Michael (solo), yet it was released on a Wham! album. Seeing the George Michael name by itself on a hit single and not Wham!, it was the signal of the end of Wham!, as George Michael would later pursue a very successful solo album (Faith) and solo career.

    A live song, "Blue" was recorded in China. It has a driving bass beat, as heard in Duran Duran songs, and the vocals and song itself is medium-tempo. It's a fair song, not as driving and energetic as previous songs heard earlier on this album. Likewise, "Where Did Your Heart Go" is another medium-tempo ballad, and if it was given enough radio airplay, it may have become another popular hit; but listening to it the first time, it's another good Wham! ballad, where if you listen to it enough, it would be another possible Wham! favorite.

    The album's closing song, "Last Christmas" is a nice bouncy pop number. Truly, if this song received the radio exposure back then, it would have been a Wham! classic. It's a very good song, and come around Christmas time, this song should be added to the list of more recent popular Christmas tunes getting regular radio airplay during the holiday season. (One particular Xmas song comes to mind -- Paul McCartney & Wings' "Wonderful Christmastime.")

    Music From The Edge Of Heaven was a good farewell album for Wham! The songs follow the tradition of Wham!'s popularity: Dance/pop songs, defining the 1980s dance sound. For the teeny-boppers of yesterday and today, Wham!'s music can always be concurrent to the teeny-bopper singers of the present and future. And, like many teeny-bopper "idols" of the past, we're curious to watch the teens grow up to adults, and see if their popularity still remains. (In most cases, it doesn't, sad to say...)

    Andrew Ridgeley has been quiet in music since the departure of Wham! George Michael, on the other hand, had a huge smash solo album with Faith, and his albums released afterward didn't get as much critical acclaim. Unfortunately, as the years did go on, George Michael had contract problems with his record company, and we all learned of his sexual preferences; especially the most scandulous event, his "bathroom adventure." Despite music artists personal activities, their music is (and should be) judged as the high points of their careers, whether critics review their music differently (in most cases negatively), in learning of their personal lives.

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    Previous Review: #680
    Lee Greenwood--Greatest Hits-Volume Two
    Next Review: #682
    Eric Burdon & War--The Black-man's Burdon