We've done Now That's What I Call Music 1, so let's move not-all-that-swiftly on to Volume 2, shall we? Why not. As I'm admittedly overly fond of saying, this was the first album I ever owned. Certainly I'd already collected a dozen or so singles by this point - Joe Dolce's Shaddap You Face, Kraftwerk's The Model and the 1982 England World Cup Squad's This Time (We'll Get It Right), to name but three - but Now 2 was the first record that made me utilise the 33rpm switch on my turntable. Here's the full track listing.
Record One Side One:
1. Queen - Radio Ga Ga 2. Nik Kershaw - Wouldn't It Be Good 3. Thompson Twins - Hold Me Now 4. Matt Bianco - Get Out Of Your Lazy Bed 5. Carmel - More More More 6. Madness - Michael Caine 7. Flying Pickets - Only You 8. Nena - 99 Red Balloons
Record One Side Two:
9. Cyndi Lauper - Girls Just Want To Have Fun 10. Tracey Ullman - My Guy's Mad At Me 11. Matthew Wilder - Break My Stride 12. Julia & Company - Breaking Down (Sugar Samba) 13. Joe Fagin - That's Living Alright 14. Hot Chocolate - I Gave You My Heart (Didn't I) 15. Snowy White - Bird Of Paradise
Record Two Side One:
16. Frankie Goes To Hollywood - Relax 17. Eurythmics - Here Comes The Rain Again 18. Howard Jones - What Is Love? 19. The Smiths - What Difference Does It Make 20. Fiction Factory - (Feels Like) Heaven 21. Re-Flex - The Politics Of Dancing 22. Thomas Dolby - Hyperactive 23. China Crisis - Wishful Thinking
Record Two Side Two:
24. David Bowie - Modern Love 25. Culture Club - It's A Miracle 26. Rolling Stones - Undercover Of The Night 27. Big Country - Wonderland 28. Slade - Run Runaway 29. Duran Duran - New Moon On Monday 30. Paul McCartney - Pipes Of Peace
Straight away it suffers in comparison to its more illustrious predecessor - Vol. 1 having contained, by my reckoning, ten UK number ones to Vol. 2's paltry four. But is the second instalment really that much poorer than the series opener? Well, yes, frankly. I mean, Snowy White's Bird Of Paradise? Tracey Ullman's pointless Madness cover My Guy's Mad At Me?? (Mary Wells had obviously claimed dibs on the use of My Guy as a song title two decades previously.) Re-Flex's The Politics Of Dancing?! Purlease!
Even some of the more well-known songs on this volume leave me cold now. I really, really hate Radio Ga Ga for example. Even as a feckless child I realised what a load of pompous drivel that was. And maybe they've just been played to death in the intervening quarter of a century (in fact, they definitely have) but Relax and Girls Just Want To Have Fun really get on my wick now too. Whereas the only good thing about It's A Miracle is it's not The War Song. Humbug!
But it's not all bad news; far from it, in fact. I mean, look! What Difference Does It Make is on there! (The fact that I was far too young and stupid to realise its genius at the time is neither here nor there.) And, erm, Wouldn't It Be Good. (Oh come on, you know you love it really!) Incidentally, Nik Kershaw was married to the daughter of an English teacher at my school. Or am I thinking of Howard Jones? No, Nik definitely never married him. Ho and indeed ho.
I also muchly like these three songs (which is probably just as well bearing in mind that I'm sticking them up as mp3s here).
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