If I ever want to look back at my younger years, at the times when I would sneak around my cousins' vinil collection or when my strange fascination for pop music truly came to birth, I definitely have to refer to this album. To me, it is one of the best examples on how a pop record should be made. No wonder it's so good, since it was produced by 80s demigods Stock-Aitken-Waterman (the men that brought you Kylie and countless others). It was also the zenith of Bananarama's reign as queer queens, already established by their campy video for "Venus". Most of this 10-set disc is brilliant and I might have even heard the first 5 songs of it ("I Can't Help It", "I Heard A Rumour", "Some Girls", "Love In the First Degree" and "Once in a Lifetime") over more than a houndred times in the last 10 years. However, I do have my critique surrounding some of the tracks: I don't really mind about "Strike it Rich" (it's the worst song in their career, as far as I'm concerned), plus I would have preffered replacing the original versions of "Nathan Jones" and "I Want You Back" with the re-recorded one with then-new Banana Jacquie O'Sullivan. And though "Bad for Me" and "Come Back" are two good songs, they are mostly filler and filler they shall be for ages.
Five years ago, Rhino Records came to the rescue and delivered some bonus goodies on WOW!: Single versions, remixes and even B-sides. Nonetheless, it reaffirms to me how great this album was and still is: TRUE POP GREATNESS!
MP3: Bananarama - Love in the First Degree