||From the Vault...
"Music From The Edge Of Heaven"
© Columbia Records
The Edge Of Heaven
I'm Your Man
Wham! Rap '86
A Different Corner
Blue (live in China)
Where Did Your
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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!
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
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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