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Dec 18

ATOMIC KITTEN – “The Tide Is High (Get The Feeling)”

Popular31 comments • 3,275 views

#935, 7th September 2002

Sometimes when this project stalls it’s because there’s a song too tricky or terrible to write about. You might think that’s the case here: it’s not. “The Tide Is High (Got The Feeling)” is indeed terrible, but its wretchedness is banal, readily apparent. There’s nothing here to get your head around: it’s a bad cover version, in an era of bad cover versions, performed mechanically by a band whose character was deliberately bleached out of them when success hit. There’s no long term plan, no devilishly clever marketing scheme – in fact the marketing is as transparent as the rest of the record.

There’s one curiosity, of course – that “Get The Feeling” parenthesis, a middle eight appended to the song like a poorly built extension. Cue sucking of teeth, shaking of heads, muttering about right cowboys. But I remember the sometime administrator of I Love Music putting up the claim that the addition made this the best version of “The Tide Is High”. It probably does make this pallid walkthrough of it better, just by creating a bit of variety for an audience raised on key changes which yank a song into higher gear. But as everyone else who had a hit with it knew, the song doesn’t need variety: it’s got a hook, a groove, and enough space for a vocalist to mix sweetness, yearning, and determination. What’s the point in making it longer?

Long ago I said that when I gave a 1 to a record there should be something outstandingly bad about it – the just generically bad wouldn’t do. The “get the feeling” break is too innocuous to even count as defacement, so this record is the definition of generically bad, the pop that people who hate pop assume all pop is like.

Being an honest critic of pop isn’t about excusing dreck: it’s about exploring how records made for the same people – and sometimes by the same people – as “Get The Feeling” fail to become it. Every new style of pop finds new ways to be better than it needs to be. But the other side of that coin is that every style finds the same lazy ways to disappoint.

2

Comments

  1. 1
    Steve Mannion on 29 Dec 2018 #

    Welcome back Popular. With nothing of note to add re this dreck I come bearing thrilling chart stats in the form of a #2 Watch (the Appleton sisters humdrum ‘Fantasy’) and that in The Tide Is High’s third and final week at #1 it somehow managed to hold off no less than five new entries directly under it (probably not the first time that had happened) ) with Liberty X’s Mantronix rehash and Kelly Osbourne’s ‘Papa Don’t Preach’ making it a top 3 of cover versions for…also probably not the first time ever but still…Scooter’s KLF-genuflecting ‘Nessaja’, Ronan Keating’s ‘I Love It When We Do’ and Sarah Whatmore’s ‘When I Lost You’ were the others.

  2. 2
    Shiny Dave on 29 Dec 2018 #

    New entries at 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6 might be the most early-2000s chart incident ever, especially with a Pop Idol I alumnus (Whatmore) and an Irish Model act (Ronan).

    I’ll give a point to this for the “new bit,” mostly because it goes very nicely with the Recycled Atomic Kitten Drum Loop, rather more than “The Tide Is High” itself. And certainly this was otherwise a terrible fit for this act, because it’s so dependent on being shot with performance character like Debbie Harry gave, and Atomic Kitten’s entire business model after “Whole Again” was geared far far away from any such thing.

    A low 3. And, thanks to that Ronan track, still not the worst song in the top five in week three of its reign of error. This was number one when I started sixth form, and my bus ride there was soundtracked by the likes of Linkin Park and Avril Lavigne on the MP3 player of one of the boys who got on at my stop; if the alternative was Ronan or this, I owe him more than I thought.

  3. 3
    Kinitawowi on 30 Dec 2018 #

    Not the first or last time that we found ourselves missing the Kerry Katona-era Kittens; but for now we bid them farewell, their next few years lost in the sea of beige they were turned into.

    I’m not sure there’s anything else I can say about this record. I’d guess it’s not the tricky or terrible that stalls this project; it’s the banal, the uninspiring, the insipid, the “how can anybody find two hundred words to say about THIS?, and how in turn can anybody find the will to respond” records. And if anything is banal, uninspiring and insipid, it’s this.

    3.

  4. 4
    23 Daves on 30 Dec 2018 #

    A big part of the problem here is that I’ve never much liked “The Tide is High” as a song. Blondie did their best to bring some charm to it, but even that version – which is probably the one I’d protest least about hearing – just saunters along lazily without managing to stir much movement or any emotions in me. It suffices, and that’s it.

    It’s far better than this, though, which feels like a cheap, hastily-recorded karaoke run-through for a B-side (or what it also reminds me of are the quickly recorded tunes for children’s feature length cartoons – I’m visualising a lot of cuddly bears and rainbows as I listen to this). Seriously sloppy stuff. The fact that this version came with a new middle-eight appended surely shows that someone out there cared and wanted to do something a bit different with the song, but that slides by without making much of a mark on me too.

  5. 5
    RobUK on 30 Dec 2018 #

    If I’m honest, I quite like this version, and yes; it’s the Get The Feeling addition that nudges it over for me. I always felt this was far more closely aligned to the spirit of Atomic Kitten – and marginally less cynical – than their insipidly transparent cover of Eternal Flame.

    It’s by no means a sonic highlight of its year, but 2002 had already delivered a lot worse – and would do again.

    5 for me

  6. 6
    mark sinker on 30 Dec 2018 #

    as no one’s mentioned it yet, here’s the actual 1967 original, by the paragons:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SQXqkiKXiHc

  7. 7
    James BC on 30 Dec 2018 #

    I’d stick up for this. I find it enjoyable and the middle 8 is a positive. Without it, the original wouldn’t have suited the Kittens so well, character-wise.

    It’s also notable for Tash being pregnant during the song’s promotion, as is very visible in the video. Which gives another layer to the middle 8 lyrics, “a moment’s pain for a lifetime’s pleasure” etc.

    I have fond memories of spending a year in Catalonia when this was in heavy rotation on Flaix TV, the Catalan music/youth station that would play songs in any language except Spanish. For example the Italian star Tiziano Ferro recorded in Spanish, which most of Flaix’s audience would have understood better I would think, but we got the Italian originals all the time. Anyway it was pretty cool when the presenters would introduce Atomic Kitten as “Les Gatetes Atomiques”. I wonder what Josep Lobato and Silvia Soler are doing now.

  8. 8
    AMZ1981 on 31 Dec 2018 #

    Commenting as much to say, `Welcome back,` as anything else because there isn’t a lot to see here – although The Tide Is High (Get The Feeling) has a little bit more going for it than Crossroads. I’m prepared to be reasonably charitable as the `get the feeling` addition just saves it from being a cheap photocopy and the fact that the production has dated badly isn’t entirely Atomic Kitten’s fault.

  9. 9
    Mark M on 31 Dec 2018 #

    To me, the strange thing about the Get The Feeling section is that was (as far as I know) newly written. It would feel more natural if it was a chunk of another familiar song, in the manner of Bono bellowing something like Ruby Tuesday in the middle of a U2 song live, or – looking ahead a few years from 2002 – those horrible Glee/Pitch Perfect Frankenstein’s-monster tunes. But I guess this works out better royalties-wise… (And a bunch of bunnies that came shortly after this would sound like a number of different songs had been welded together, even though they were originals).

    In any case, I find the result gruesome.

    Sadly, the discussion of the various versions in FreakyTrigger’s Gloria series has been lost to history – Tom’s opening to the debate is there, but the comments are long gone. I love The Paragons’ original dearly – rocksteady is the Jamaican genre I’m fondest of, but my favourite take on this song might be U-Roy’s DJ version from 1971.

  10. 10
    Lee Saunders on 31 Dec 2018 #

    August 2005, our family from Sheffield had come down for a few days to where I live in Wiltshire, for the first time in my then living memory. The 7 (almost 8) year old me, much like the 21 year old me today, was known to them and other as being a ‘music boy’ with my vast array of CDs and Now compilations, so when we were having a BBQ, I was the “DJ” (playing random songs I wanted to hear on the CD player from my and my parents’ collection). I show them Now 53 to see if they wanted to choose a track, and my great uncle’s friend (who is like family) wanted Atomic Kitten’s The Tide is High. I vigorously refused, saying that it was rubbish. Even after my dad got angry at me and basically instructed me to play it, I remained a rude, naughty boy and never played it.

    I was being a brat, obviously, and a total killjoy. And while I would never be an arsehole in a situation like that today, I can only look back and smile, because this is still complete garbage and I don’t think I’ve heard it in the wild since, except on ‘every number 1 of the 2000s’ programmes. This sucks all the lite-reggae out of the Blondie version just like they sucked all the lite-Sgt Pepper out of Eternal Flame, and like that song what lies in its place is the most tired Early Learning Centre Kids Grooves sounds known to a #1 record. Not for me, thanks.

    2

    This was number one on my first day of school

  11. 11
    ThePensmith on 2 Jan 2019 #

    The fact that this was sat waiting on standby for over a year in Hugh Goldsmith, head of Innocent Records’ hope – but ultimately a failed one – that it would rescue a now disinterested and happily drunk/married Billie Piper’s music career (which had already gone down the swanee with the relative flop of her second album and ‘Walk of Life’ single) shows how much he wasn’t willing to give up easily on his acts or to give them a surefire hit to turn things round as we’ve seen before. And to be fair, he had a banker in ‘The Tide Is High’. Where cover versions are concerned, it’s like films starring Emma Thompson, it’s hard to see it being a bad one if she’s involved. Likewise it’s hard to see a cover version go wrong if it’s this song.

    So it was kind of funny that, by the time Billie had finally cut her ties with Innocent Records following a well documented stalker court case ordeal and marriage to Chris Evans, that it had been given to the Kittens, whilst Natasha Hamilton was heavily pregnant with her first son Josh in the video and subsequent early promo for this, again sparking temporary doubt about their future. It thus ensured maximum publicity for the single even as she went on maternity leave just a couple of weeks or so before this single came out. This media exposure is probably, like with ‘Whole Again’ and Kerry leaving/having Bri(y)an from Westlife’s baby, is what initially introduced people to it, and as it grew in airplay, ultimately kept it at number one for almost the same calendar month that that single had managed.

    Of their three cover versions they released as singles (‘Eternal Flame’ from a year before being one of them), it’s the one I can tolerate the most. It’s pointless in comparison to the Paragons’ original or Blondie’s rewriting of it, true (particularly the jarringly bolted on ‘Get The Feeling’ section from which their version gets it’s title, which I reciprocate with everybody on), but it’s harmless and it means well otherwise. Their butchering of Kool and the Gang’s ‘Ladies Night’ (which christened the title of their third and final album a year later) was absymally more hateful and derisive than this, however. For ‘The Tide Is High’ though, I’m going to give it a surprisingly reevaluated 5.

    Also the last Kittens entry to Popular, this. Strangely (but not unsurprisingly) in the years following their 2004 split, Liz McClarnon was the only one who enjoyed a brief fluttering of solo success, with Robin Gibb producing her version of Barbra Streisand’s ‘Woman In Love’ to a top 5 berth in February 2006. Jenny Frost did a God awful dance track with Route-1 (alias of the team who’d produced ‘Kiss Kiss’ for Holly Valance) called ‘Crash Landing’ which aptly bombed out at #57. They reunited minus Jenny under their Mk 1 Katona lineup for ITV2’s The Big Reunion in 2013, and performed this at the Hammersmith Apollo gig and subsequent arena tour.

    #2 watch – Nicole & Natalie Appleton launched their brief but brilliant post-All Saints career with ‘Fantasy’ in its second week. One of the lowest selling runners up of the year, but even now it’s an enjoyable, lushly harmonized rollicking slice of feisty femme pop rock a la Natalie Imbruglia. The #5 follow up ‘Don’t Worry’ was also most pleasing, a gentle and moving ballad about the passing of a loved one. It was especially nice to hear them do it on the All Saints comeback tour I went to two years ago in Southend where they did it as an acoustic medley with Shaznay Lewis’ ‘Never Felt Like This Before’ and Melanie Blatt’s ’24/7′ collaboration with Artful Dodger.

    Liberty X coming so near and yet so far to making it two number ones in a row in the third and final week – in fact, leading the way midweek at one point – with their reading of Mantronix’s ‘Got To Have Your Love’. Again, pointless but harmless, but for different reasons. Their Richard X collaboration on ‘Being Nobody’ about six months later was really quite special, mind.

  12. 12
    hardtogethits on 2 Jan 2019 #

    Interesting. In 2002, I found myself in an emotional place I would not like to revisit. At the end of 2001, Nature had dealt me and my family a nasty blow. I tried to recover my composure and return to work in early 2002. One Monday morning, a couple of weeks in, I was given the shocking news that the 43-year-old man who worked at the desk next to mine had died in his sleep the previous night. There had been no warning signs. He was survived by his wife and four children.

    His death posed a philosophical riddle. I was now in a situation where I did not know where I would physically be able to achieve some of the modest goals I had set myself in life. I also had no control whatsoever over whether I could. My colleague, by contrast, had met all of his personal and professional goals effortlessly. Now, he knew nothing about it. He was a self-effacing, easy-going family man. He exuded a calm contentedness that colleagues and friends admired, and it made them feel happy. Now that was all gone. I could not pretend to understand how his family must have felt. Of course, it left me thinking, “What’s it all for, what does it all mean” etc.

    Things got better, for me, through the year. Then as now, it was remarkable how (again, I stress, for me) the year began at rock-bottom, and ended in optimism; something approaching confidence.

    I recall from the time that one of the things that helped me cope was the abundance of bearable everyday pop on the radio. Seriously.

    I look back now and think how recognisable some of those records were. Late in the year, I heard an interview with an actress who said something like “I love modern pop, stuff like Nickelback and P!nk”. At once, I thought the following (deep breath):

    a) they’re nothing like each other (and therefore the examples offer no insight (to amplify this point – what would the third example be? My thought process says Shakira, but she’s nothing like the other two)

    b) they’re not modern sounding (even in 2002)

    c) they’re very bland and anything that mainstream should not be forwarded as an example of one’s up-to-dateness

    d) they’ve both put out a couple of bearable records – in fact I think I quite like those records

    And my reaction to that single comment was very similar to how I felt when I listened to Now 53. Treat yourself – look at the tracklisting. Utterly bearable, nothing great.

    So, I can’t make up my mind whether 2002 was rubbish or brilliant. We got through it. It wasn’t terribly different from what went before, or what came after. But it was a little bit different. And we are not going back. The record which epitomises all of this , for me, is “The Tide Is High” by Atomic Kitten.

    One last thing. Wrt “Get the Feeling” – Why no ref to “Oh My Lord” (1978), or “Forgive Me Girl” (1980)?

  13. 13
    enitharmon on 3 Jan 2019 #

    Good to see you back, Tom.

    You’re not far off catching up with your own tail now. I hope you make it that far if only because the track that marks that moment is one I actually know, which is rare for me at this end of the project. I wouldn’t blame you for calling it a day then. The world and all of our lives have moved on considerably since the project began.

    I do know this one too. I can only compare it unfavourably with the Blondie version, which to be honest was never one of Blondie’s towering monuments anyway but at least it was Blondie. If this were a film I’d call it Yet Another Pointless Remake.

  14. 14
    andrew on 4 Jan 2019 #

    The artwork!

    Apt for the group’s name that the girls look as if they’d scratch your eyes out as soon as look at you.

  15. 15
    Keley Ann on 4 Jan 2019 #

    So glad this is back up – I always panic slightly when there’s a long off spate! This is, indeed, rather bland to say the least.

  16. 16
    Shiny Dave on 6 Jan 2019 #

    11. Completely agreed on the “Ladies Night” cover – good idea (girl group cover of that song!) done spectacularly badly, without even the (very!) basic competence of the other two covers. I’d be preparing a 1 for it if it was bunnied.

    12. That Now 53 tracklisting… I’m not sure I’d put CD1 Track 2 in that category, but it’s on our radar. But there is a lot of general adequacy on that list, even by Now standards – unexceptional-but-serviceable dance-pop at the back end of CD1, and lots of mediocre pop depth throughout most of that disc. (Which makes sense in this era – the record industry was basically in strong financial position, whilst also seeing the digital danger even if there was too much focus on piracy as the potential murder weapon. Couple that with the warp-speed chart turnover of this era and you have a recipe for making lots of quick bets on the here and now, which is how you get things like Abs getting a shot at a solo career or half the Pop Idol finalists getting record deals.)

    Bizarre to see Puddle of Mudd’s “She Hates Me” on CD2 though. Surely, to the general public outside the nu-metal crowd to which I was so heavily exposed as a sixth-former at the time, that was a gimmick record? And that gimmick was the swearing that obviously had to be edited out for Now? Weird.

  17. 17
    Kinitawowi on 6 Jan 2019 #

    I’d guess Puddle Of Mudd were there just to continue riding the wave; the surprisingly decent Blurry had appeared on Now! 52.

  18. 18
    Lee Saunders on 6 Jan 2019 #

    I’m afraid I’m quite mixed on Appleton’s Fantasy; I loved it in the mid-00s, but only the intro and verses with that outre production (with a guitar sound eyeing up Holly Valance’s impending Down Boy) really stand out to me today, as the chorus sounds surprisingly flat.

    I would want to stick up vigorously for Now 53 but that’s mostly purely out of the sake of childhood nostalgia. But most of what’s good about CD1 has been mentioned in other threads. CD2 is one of the most classic ‘rock/alternative stuff throughout but mostly at the start’ scenarios in all of Now history, but I’d stick up for some of a lot of the songs, even RA’s much maligned Check the Meaning (if we avoid the lyrics).

    U2’s appearance is one of their best songs of the 2000s, Supergrass’ Grace (their last Now IIRC) is lovely and its a shame other fanbase hits like Suede’s Positivity or the Manics’ There by the Grace of God don’t (cough) grace the disc*. But that Eva Cassidy track wasn’t even a single, and follows the Verve on Now 40 and Coldplay on 48 (and soon 55) in ‘the album/artist is big so we’re sticking a non-charter on there to represent their appeal’ territory.

    Then the, shall we say, Kerrang stuff is a bad mix, even if they all appealed to me as a boy. The Summer Nights-but-not-geddit!? Puddle of Mudd track is pretty dire and Chad Kroeger’s Hero likewise (and should have been on 52 I think, tho thanks to its appearance here I’ll always think of it as an end-of-the-year hit). Girl All the Bad Guys Want at least offers up a smile.

    Then there’s the out of place R&B and dance material, represented best by the wonderful Dy-Na-Mi-Tee.

    *but then those bands rarely did

  19. 19
    ThePensmith on 6 Jan 2019 #

    #18 – I always think the 2002 Nows are my least favourite volumes of the series. BMG/Warner/Sony had reactivated the ‘Hits’ series of compilations the year before, and 2002 happened to be a bumper year for artists on those labels – hence why the Will and Gareth singles were exclusive to the Hits 52-54 volumes released that year (I think I might have mentioned back at the last Gareth entry that my copy of Hits 53 had the ‘Anyone Of Us’ video as a bonus CD-ROM feature on Disc 2. They did the same with ‘Evergreen’ on Hits 52 and the bunny from next for Hits 54). Of course the label politics did Now no favours who kicked off Now 52 with ‘If Tomorrow Never Comes’ over ‘Just A Little’ and have George Michael’s awful low charter ‘Freeek!’ abnormally high up on the tracklist.

  20. 20
    Lee Saunders on 6 Jan 2019 #

    #19 Yeah I discussed those benefits of the Hits series in this period – and Now 52’s relative downside – on the If Tomorrow Never Comes thread, and BMG and co. certainly tried hard in this era – the Pop Idol inclusions (and music videos too) in 2002 were the equivalent of the ’50 tracks even tho a lot of them are edited’ fiasco of 2001. But brand loyalty prevailed and indeed 2000s Hits albums were just as prone, and often more so, to lesser hits clogging up the track list in unusual places (for every Freeek! situation on a Now album there’d be a few more on a Hits album I find).

    I do love those 2000s Hits albums all the same, not least because cross-licensing splits meant a lot of songs appeared on them that didn’t on the Nows and vice versa, perhaps more so than was the case with the Global TV albums in the 90s (and the two aforesaid Suede and Manics songs did appear, altho the Manics one was relegated towards the end of the 25-tracks-per-disc Huge Hits 2003, where it was of course edited)

  21. 21
    Duro on 10 Jan 2019 #

    Since comment #1 references ‘Nessaja’, I would like to reference the scene in This Country where Kurtan plays it to the vicar.

    I gave this a (too) charitable 4, but note that my upcoming scores are 4, 4, 6, 6, 5, 1, 5 and 3. This is not the most exciting time to spur a revival of your project, but all the best if that is your intention!

  22. 22
    Tommy Mack on 16 Jan 2019 #

    Mark M #9: The only precedent I know for grafting your own song onto a flagship cover is Freakytrigger’s official favourite record of all time, Pet Shop Boys’ Always On My Mind/In My House, way up the other end of the quality scale.

    Has anyone else ever done this? (Oasis sort of did it with the G*ry Gl*tt*r coda on Hello)

  23. 23
    cryptopian on 17 Jan 2019 #

    God this is dull. There’s not enough to hate really, but this encapsulates my memory of the sterile early 2000s UK pop scene. 4 from me.

  24. 24
    Lee Saunders on 17 Jan 2019 #

    Other, unmentioned new entry concerns from this record’s summit span (but not all of them)

    Week 1
    #5 Ms Dynamite – Dy-Na-Mi-Tee – A (proto-Craig revival) semi-revival in 2010/11 aside, the short commercial legs of Ms Dynamite’s career feel to me a bit of a shame. Dy-Na-Mi-Tee is wonderfully restrained R&B whose secret weapon, cooing vocals aside, seems to be the unrelenting shaking of a tambourine, contributing more to the song’s bejewelled prettiness. Her Mercury Prize was really a noose round her neck, like it so often is to its winners.
    #20 – Mint Royale – Sexiest Man in Jamaica – This oddly bunnied act seem to me the epitome of dance acts who kept charting with crossover, multi-influenced records but have never appeared to actually have any fans, a much more severe case of what some recon of Groove Armada (who are clearly this song’s biggest influence – it could have been on GA’s contemporaneous Lovebox, which was their last album to ape Leftfield before their suppressed desire to be Basement Jaxx eventually took over).
    #21 – Ash – Envy – surprisingly not very hooky, but even though this is the last Ash song I can remember appearing on compilations, they still had a few modest hits of a size like this left in them for another five years. By the time they bowed out of the top 20 in 2007 you’d forget Tim Wheeler was still only 30, the age Grant Nicholas was when peers Feeder had their first hit.
    #41 – Saint Etienne – Action – this post-Moloko-ish ditty could have been StEt’s last top 40 hit if it had gone one place higher…until follow-up Soft Like Me somehow did just that.

    Week 2
    #7 – Paul Weller – It’s Written in the Stars – the slightly ‘off’ horn sample that sounded lifted from vinyl was to many perhaps the most interesting thing about a Paul Weller single in years, and kinda puts me in the mind of Lemon Jelly. The parent album had a raga instrumental and a nice pop arty sleeve (Lemon Jelly again), so in some ways his apparent ‘creative renaissance’ (i.e. straying more from the meat and potatoes) that began with 22 Dreams has some unrecognised precedent here.
    #12 – Underworld – Two Months Off – the singles looked like they could have been from Melody A.M., but (especially with TMO) the apparent blow to the group that was the departure of Darren Emerson does not really sound to me on A Hundred Days Off, which is a pretty solid record overall, if not quite up the standards of even Beaucoup Fish (which I really do love)
    #29 – Weezer – Keep Fishin’ – if the single had all the chatter from the video then this would have been The Muppets’ first hit in 25 years. I’m not much of a Weezer fan but why Burndt Jamb wasn’t a single in this period seems a shame to me.

    Week 3
    Loads of new entries, nothing I really feel like commenting on (if I can call this commenting). Ronan’s I Love It When You Do is Gregg Alexander’s first boring hit but fortunately he’ll have at least one more great one in him next year (and its not with Ronan).

    Oddly Papa Don’t Preach wasn’t strictly a chart entry at #3 as it had been hanging in the much lower reaches (peaking at #65) in the four weeks before… what was going on there?

  25. 25
    Mark G on 17 Jan 2019 #

    Papa Don’t Preach was selling as a 12″ import, ahead of the single issue. Kelly Osborne, in case you were wondering, boys and girls.

    The idea that people were so impatient for Ozzy’s kid’s message to her dad that they had to buy the import 12″ .. etc.

  26. 26
    lockedintheattic on 17 Jan 2019 #

    #9 & #22 one of the best selling singles of all time in the UK did it – Mary’s Boy Child / Oh My Lord by Boney M, which would have helped make Frank Farian a fair bit of cash

  27. 27
    hardtogethits on 17 Jan 2019 #

    Sigh, #26. And #22. Yes that’s true. In #12, I asked why nobody had mentioned “Mary’s Boy Child – Oh My Lord” Or “Working My Way Back To You – Forgive Me Girl”. It wasn’t cryptic.

    If there’s one thing worse than being talked about…

    Moving on. Another question I’d like to ask contestant #24 please. And everyone. Y’know Ms Dynamite? Did she mispronounce “Ms”, or mis-spell “Miss”. Got to be one or the other.

  28. 28
    Tommy Mack on 21 Jan 2019 #

    Sorry, HardToGetHits, I did read that but totally missed the point you were making and had forgotten by the time I listened to Pet Shop Boys and thought ‘ooh!’

  29. 29
    Kit on 23 Jan 2019 #

    Note that PSB didn’t graft their own song into the “flagship” version of Always On My Mind, or on their second version, but only medleyfied it over a year later for the album-of-notably-different-or-long-versions re-(re)-recording.

  30. 30
    lonepilgrim on 8 Feb 2019 #

    it’s an indication of how bland this single is that it has taken me so long to respond – the original Paragons version has a sincere yet muted energy which the Blondie version replaces with Debbie Harry’s listless sultriness. This version sounds like AI karaoke – slick, efficient and charmless.

  31. 31
    Cumbrian on 15 May 2019 #

    Cheers to Mark S for linking to The Paragons’ version – it has clarified to me that I believe this song to be a clunker. Tom’s right that the song has no variety and needs to settle into its groove, but I don’t like its groove, so I find the lack of variety is not a bonus. Consequently, I don’t think any of the versions are much good – The Paragons marginally the best, and Blondie’s I find insipid (and by comparison to the rest of their golden era output about the worst of their singles) – but this version is absolutely the worst. Given I don’t like the song, I’ll put some of this down to that and give AK some level of latitude re: their performance. The production is poor though, and combined with a song I don’t like, 2 is probably about right.

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