Thursday, September 22, 2016

Reviewing Wham! Fantastic Album

80s pop group Wham!'s first album - Fantastic, containing some of the best Wham! songs from the 80s.
Wham! Fantastic Album
The early 80s saw two childhood friends become pop stars with their first album, they were known as Wham! and their album was simply called Fantastic.   As a teen I thought the album was summed up nicely with that name so here's my review of Wham!'s Fantastic album.

Anyone who loves 80s pop music would have heard of Wham! and would probably enjoy their songs, as a teen I thought they were fantastic and I had one wall in my bedroom dedicated to their posters!  That said I'm all grown up now and I still like this album!   Admittedly it's probably a case of nostalgia and the fact that it makes me think I'm still a teenager, but I believe this album has stood the test of time.

The Fantastic Album by Wham! was their first album and was a number one hit on the UK album charts.   The songs (written by George Michael) were part satirist and part social commentary which is why I think they were so popular.

As MTV had just been 'born' the group made also produced some great 80s music videos to accompany their singles.

Young Guns (Go For It!)

Wham!'s First Hit Single


Although Young Guns was actually Wham!'s second single to be released, it was their first hit and the introduction to many teenagers to this 80s duo.

The BBC program Top of the Pops (TOTPs) is credited with this single taking off. The single Young Guns was still outside of the Top 40 when Wham! were scheduled to appear.

Now at this time in the UK TOTPs was still compulsory viewing for the younger generation as other music shows such as The Tube were not around just yet. I can remember sitting down watching TOTP when Wham! came on and I was hooked on the beat (and the boys!).

Everything about Wham! was perfectly timed for 1982. George Michael has said that he was inspired to write the song after seeing a number of their school friends getting married straight out of school.

The music video for this single shows George singing to Andrew and trying to get him not to throw his life away by getting married early. Referring to him as "Hey Sucker" he tells him -

"See me, single and free
No tears, no fears, what I want to be.
One, two, take a look at you
Death by matrimony!" 
And warns that if he marries now he's crazy and his future is going to be -
"Sleepless nights, on an H.P. bed
 A daddy by the time you're twenty-one"


If you've enjoyed that music video, download Young Guns by Wham! now.

Wham! Rap

Written by George Michael & Andrew Ridgeley


With the success of Young Guns (Go for it!) Wham! decided to re-release their first single Wham! Rap.

Their first few singles and accompanying videos told stories which were part satirist and part social commentary. Wham! Rap was their first single, although it never broke into the top 40 initially. Their second single fared better and so they re-released Wham! Rap the following year and it was a top ten hit in the UK.

Wham! Rap is about youngsters living the high life on the dole chasing their pleasures and shrugging their responsibilities. Prancing about in their jeans and leather jackets George and Andrew seemed to embody the hedonistic values of the song.

From the opening line the Wham! boys seem to be thumbing their nose at people who work and glamorizing the idea of being on the dole (a stark reality for a number of young people in the UK at the beginning of the 80s).

"Hey everybody take a look at me,
I've got street credibility,
I may not have a job,
But I have a good time,
With the boys that I meet "down on the line"


If you enjoyed this hit Wham! song then download it from here and listen to Wham Rap whenever you like!

Bad Boys

One of the Best Wham! Songs


I absolutely LOVED this song when it came out. The rhythm and words are both catchy and appealed to the youth of the time. I still can't help singing along when I hear this song.

As with Wham!'s other songs from their first album Fantastic!, Bad Boy tells a story. Embracing the age of the music video Wham! told the song's story visually as well.

Bad Boys is about a rebellious teenager and his worried parents and was always going to appeal to Wham!'s young audience. The song starts off with the words

"Dear mummy, Dear Daddy,
You had plans for me, I was your only son."

and goes on as only a rebellious youth would holding everything 'bad' in high esteem and looking down on everything 'good.'

Parents asking - "Where were you last night?" were portrayed as being nosy busybodies as opposed to worried parents.

As a teen at the time I could really relate - as a mother now I shudder! I do still love the song though:)


If you want to be transported back to 1983 then download Bad Boys here and listen to it whenever you like!


Club Tropicana

One of the Top Wham! Songs

Club Tropicana is a musical send up of the Club Med scene. This scene was where 18-30 year olds could take a package holiday with other 18-30 year olds. The result was a booze ridden week of hook-ups!

"Club Tropicana, drinks are free,
Fun and sunshine - there's enough for everyone.
All that's missing is the sea,
But don't worry, you can suntan!"

This was the last of four singles released from their first album - Fantastic!. All four of the singles had made it into the Top Ten and Wham! were on top of their game.

The idea of every single telling a story and then the music video reiterating the story visually was a successful ploy of Wham!s.


As the song goes......" fun and laughter - there's enough for everyone. All that's missing is the ..." song - download it now and have a good time!


Fantastic - by Wham!

The album Fantastic by Wham! was released on 9th July 1983 and reached number one in the UK album charts.

Original Fantastic Track Listing

1. "Bad Boys" - 3:19 (Written by George Michael)
2. "Ray Of Sunshine" - 4:43 (Written by George Michael)
3. "Love Machine" - 3:19 (Written by Pete Moor &, Billy Griffin)
4. "Wham! Rap (Enjoy What You Do)" - 6:41 (Written by George Michael & Andrew Ridgeley)
5. "Club Tropicana" - 4:28 (Written by George Michael & Andrew Ridgeley)
6. "Nothing Looks The Same In The Light" - 5:53 (Written by George Michael)
7. "Come On" - 4:24 (Written by George Michael)
8. "Young Guns (Go For It!)" - 3:55(Written by George Michael)


Wham! Fantastic AlbumWham! Fantastic Album
In 1998 the cd was reissued and contained three bonus tracks –

1. "Bad Boys" – 3:19 (Written by George Michael)
2. "Ray Of Sunshine" – 4:43 (Written by George Michael)
3. "Love Machine" – 3:19 (Written by Pete Moore & Billy Griffin)
4. "Wham! Rap (Enjoy What You Do)" – 6:41 (Written by George Michael & Andrew Ridgeley)
5. "A Ray Of Sunshine (Instrumental Remix)" - 5:40 (Written by George Michael)
6. "Love Machine (Instrumental Remix)" - 3:28 (Written by George Michael)
7. "Club Tropicana" – 4:28 (Written by George Michael & Andrew Ridgeley)
8. "Nothing Looks The Same In The Light" – 5:53 (Written by George Michael)
9. "Come On" – 4:24 (Written by George Michael)
10. "Young Guns (Go For It!)" – 3:55 (Written by George Michael)
11. "Nothing Looks The Same In The Light (Instrumental Remix)" - 6:40 (Written by George Michael)

I hope you've enjoyed this musical hop back to the 80s with me, now confession time.  Although I had a wall dedicated to Wham! I didn't actually own this particular LP. My brother had it, I just may have (purely in the role of big sister) commandeered it so much that you would think it belonged to me!

One of the popular albums of the 1980s was Wham! Fantastic album which hit the number 1 spot on the UK album chart.





Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

4 comments:

  1. Interesting review of 'Wham', Louanne. I will have to ask my son if he remembers them, as 80s music was his era (mine was the 50s.... :)

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  2. Yes, I remember Wham. Those videos must have been amongst some of the earliest. Thanks for the trip back!

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  3. It is funny how a few years can make such a huge difference! I vaguely remember Wham, but I do know how listening to the music that was popular during our teen years can take us back in an instant. Excellent review! You made me wish I knew more about them. Somehow, I don't think their music would have the same appeal to me today that it would have had during my actual teens.

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  4. Brought back some good memories thanks for that trip down memory lane. And, yes, it's still a great album.....

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