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Wham! - Fantastic

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Fantastic

Wham!

  • Released on 14-12-1983 by Epic
  • Main artist: Wham!
  • Genre: Pop
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Language available : english

Fantastic is the misguided 1983 debut release from the U.K. duo Wham. With Fantastic, George Michael and partner Andrew Ridgeley introduced themselves as leather jacket-clad, street-smart "rebels." This approach proved wildly popular in the U.K., where Fantastic was a Top Ten hit, but the album went largely unnoticed in the States. While Fantastic showcases the ability of the young (20 at the time of the album's release) George Michael to craft engaging, hook-filled melodies, much of the material on Fantastic suffers from the duo's pretentious, tough-guy posturing. The empty funk of the U.K. hits "Bad Boys," "Young Guns (Go for It)," and the embarrassing "Wham Rap" barely registers, and Michael's smart-aleck, self-conscious lyrics are often unintentionally hilarious. Although Michael eventually became well-known as a reasonably successful emulator of R&B trends, neither these tunes nor Fantastic's stupefying remake of the Miracles' "Love Machine" give any indication of his abilities. At best, Fantastic can be viewed as a testament to George Michael's maturity. "Nothing Looks the Same in the Light" and "Club Tropicana," two of Fantastic's best tunes, lean toward the lush, adult pop of Michael's later solo work. Fortunately, Michael and Ridgeley would later ditch the superficial, leather-jacketed approach for the more sophisticated pop of later Wham releases like "Everything She Wants" and "Freedom" (both from 1984's Make It Big) and "The Edge of Heaven" (from 1986's Music From the Edge of Heaven), finding major U.S. success in the process. Fantastic isn't a good album, but it's oddly entertaining. It's certainly interesting hearing the difference between the frothy Fantastic and Michael's later, "serious" solo work like Listen Without Prejudice and Older. And Fantastic is also good for a few chuckles. Unfortunately, that probably wasn't George Michael's intention. But even he might get a good laugh out of it.
© William Cooper /TiVo

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Fantastic

Wham!

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1
Bad Boys (Album Version)
00:03:20

Wham!, Performer - G. Michael, Composer - G. Michael, Lyricist

(P) 1983 Sony Music Entertainment UK Limited

2
A Ray Of Sunshine (Instrumental Remix)
00:04:47

Wham!, Performer - George Michael, Vocal - George Michael, Producer - George Michael, Arranger - George Michael, Performer - Steve Brown, Producer - Tony Moroni, Percussion - Tony Taverner, Engineer - Andrew Ridgeley, Guitar - Guy Barker, Horns - Chris Hunter, Horns - Tommy Eyre, Keyboards - G. Michael, Lyricist - G. Michael, Composer - Andy Duncan, Drums - Trevor Morell, Drums

(P) 1983 Sony Music Entertainment UK Limited

3
Love Machine (Album Version)
00:03:22

Wham!, Performer - George Michael, Vocal - George Michael, Producer - George Michael, Arranger - George Michael, Performer - W.Griffin, Composer - W.Griffin, Lyricist - Steve Brown, Producer - Robert Ahwai, Guitar - Tony Taverner, Engineer - Louis Jardin, Percussion - Raoul ., Horns - Colin ., Horns - W.Moore, Composer - W.Moore, Lyricist - Trevor Morrell, Drums - Tommy Eyre, Keyboards - Baps, Horns - Dion Estes, Bass

(P) 1983 Sony Music Entertainment UK Limited

4
Wham Rap! (Enjoy What You Do?) (Album Version)
00:06:44

Wham!, Performer - George Michael, Vocal - George Michael, Arranger - George Michael, Performer - A. Ridgely, Composer - A. Ridgely, Lyricist - John Mackenzie, Bass - Tony Taverner, Engineer - Bob Carter, Producer - Bob Carter, Keyboards - Andrew Ridgeley, Guitar - Guy Barker, Horns - Chris Hunter, Horns - Andy Duncan, Percussion - Andy Duncan, Drums - G. Michael, Lyricist - G. Michael, Composer - Trevor Morell, Drums

(P) 1982 Sony Music Entertainment UK Limited

5
A Ray of Sunshine (Instrumental Remix)
00:05:39

Wham!, Performer - George Michael, Vocal - George Michael, Composer - George Michael, Producer - George Michael, Background Vocal - George Michael, Lyricist - George Michael, Arranger - Steve Brown, Producer - Tony Moroni, Percussion - Robert Ahwai, Guitar - Andrew Ridgeley, Guitar - Tommy Eyre, Keyboards - Trevor Morell, Drums - Dion Estes, Bass

(P) 1983 Innervision Records

6
Love Machine (Instrumental Remix)
00:03:27

Trevor Morell, Drums - Dion Estes, Bass - Raoul ., Horns - Tommy Eyre, Keyboards - Tony Jackson, Background Vocal - W. Moore, Composer - W. Moore, Lyricist - George Chandler, Background Vocal - Baps, Horns - Louis Jardin, Percussion - Wham!, Performer - Linton Ace, Arranger - Colin ., Horns - Trevor Morrell, Drums - George Michael, Vocal - George Michael, Producer - George Michael, Background Vocal - George Michael, Arranger - George Michael, Performer - W. Griffin, Composer - W. Griffin, Lyricist - Robert Ahwai, Guitar - Tony Taverner, Engineer - Andrew Ridgeley, Guitar - Jimmy Chambers, Background Vocal - Steve Brown, Producer

(P) 1983 Innervision Records

7
Club Tropicana (Album Version)
00:04:25

Wham!, Performer - George Michael, Vocal - George Michael, Composer - George Michael, Producer - George Michael, Lyricist - George Michael, Arranger - George Michael, Performer - Ritchie ., Arranger - Steve Brown, Producer - Tony Taverner, Engineer - Michael ., Arranger - Roddy Lorimer, Horns - Andrew Ridgeley, Guitar - Andrew Ridgely, Composer - Andrew Ridgely, Lyricist - Tommy Eyre, Keyboards - Dion Estes, Bass - Trevor Morell, Drums - Andy Duncan, Percussion - Ian Ritchie, Horns

(P) 1983 Sony Music Entertainment UK Limited

8
Nothing Looks the Same In the Light (Album Version)
00:05:56

George Michael, Vocal - George Michael, Producer - George Michael, Arranger - George Michael, Performer - Trevor Morell, Drums - Steve Brown, Producer - Wham!, Performer - G. Michael, Lyricist - G. Michael, Composer - Tony Taverner, Engineer

(P) 1983 Sony Music Entertainment UK Limited

9
Come On! (Album Version)
00:04:23

Katie Kassoon, Background Vocal - Wham!, Performer - George Michael, Producer - George Michael, Arranger - George Michael, Performer - Steve Brown, Producer - Tony Moroni, Percussion - Robert Ahwai, Guitar - Tony Taverner, Engineer - Sylvia Mason, Background Vocal - Raoul ., Horns - Colin ., Horns - Andrew Ridgeley, Guitar - Stevie Langer, Background Vocal - Graham Broad, Drums - Tommy Eyre, Keyboards - Baps, Horns - G. Michael, Lyricist - G. Michael, Composer - Dion Estes, Bass

(P) 1983 Innervision Records

10
Young Guns (Go for It!)
00:03:56

Wham!, Performer - George Michael, Vocal - George Michael, Composer - George Michael, Producer - George Michael, Lyricist - George Michael, Arranger - George Michael, Performer - Brad Lang, Bass - B. Ezard, Horns - J. Healey, Horns - Andy Ridgeley, Guitar - A Mackkintosh, Horns - Steve Brown, Producer - Robert Ahwai, Guitar - Tony Taverner, Engineer - Josie James, Background Vocal - Anne Dudley, Keyboards - Linda Hayes, Background Vocal - Graham Broad, Drums - S. Holliman, Background Vocal - Dee C. Lee, Background Vocal

(P) 1982 Sony Music Entertainment UK Limited

11
Nothing Looks The Same In The Light (Album Version)
00:06:42

Wham!, Performer - George Michael, Vocal - George Michael, Producer - George Michael, Background Vocal - Robert Ahwai, Guitar - Steve Brown, Producer - Tony Moroni, Percussion - Raoul ., Horns - Colin ., Horns - Andrew Ridgeley, Guitar - Tommy Eyre, Keyboards - Baps, Horns - G. Michael, Lyricist - G. Michael, Composer - Trevor Morell, Drums - Dion Estes, Bass

(P) 1983 Sony Music Entertainment UK Limited

Album Description

Fantastic is the misguided 1983 debut release from the U.K. duo Wham. With Fantastic, George Michael and partner Andrew Ridgeley introduced themselves as leather jacket-clad, street-smart "rebels." This approach proved wildly popular in the U.K., where Fantastic was a Top Ten hit, but the album went largely unnoticed in the States. While Fantastic showcases the ability of the young (20 at the time of the album's release) George Michael to craft engaging, hook-filled melodies, much of the material on Fantastic suffers from the duo's pretentious, tough-guy posturing. The empty funk of the U.K. hits "Bad Boys," "Young Guns (Go for It)," and the embarrassing "Wham Rap" barely registers, and Michael's smart-aleck, self-conscious lyrics are often unintentionally hilarious. Although Michael eventually became well-known as a reasonably successful emulator of R&B trends, neither these tunes nor Fantastic's stupefying remake of the Miracles' "Love Machine" give any indication of his abilities. At best, Fantastic can be viewed as a testament to George Michael's maturity. "Nothing Looks the Same in the Light" and "Club Tropicana," two of Fantastic's best tunes, lean toward the lush, adult pop of Michael's later solo work. Fortunately, Michael and Ridgeley would later ditch the superficial, leather-jacketed approach for the more sophisticated pop of later Wham releases like "Everything She Wants" and "Freedom" (both from 1984's Make It Big) and "The Edge of Heaven" (from 1986's Music From the Edge of Heaven), finding major U.S. success in the process. Fantastic isn't a good album, but it's oddly entertaining. It's certainly interesting hearing the difference between the frothy Fantastic and Michael's later, "serious" solo work like Listen Without Prejudice and Older. And Fantastic is also good for a few chuckles. Unfortunately, that probably wasn't George Michael's intention. But even he might get a good laugh out of it.
© William Cooper /TiVo

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