Discussion in 'Charts, rates etc' started by VivaForever, Feb 18, 2019.
Oops. Apologies @VivaForever!
Still, I stand by what I said.
The Jenny Morris version is not good.
5. (We Want) The Same Thing - 9.42
Highest score: 11 (@Hudweiser)
10 x 7 (bonnieetclyde, tylerc904, CasperFan, Robsolete, Seventeen Days, unnameable, Remorque)
Lowest score: 8 x 3 (me, @Hatbar, @Cundy)
Oh, how the tables have tabled! When Summer Rain beat this in the singles rate (after I'd thought this had won due to a mistake in my Excel formulas), I was lowkey fuming. This was probably in my Belinda top 5, and I'd been so excited to see it take Summer Rain down... until it didn't. This time around, I scored Summer Rain a point higher than this and am pleased to see it outlast it. (We Want) The Same Thing - throw an exclamation point in there and you'd have a Shania Twain song - is a really good late-'80s rock-pop bop (well, the single version is, dddd), but not a great one. No way would I have made this top 5 over In Too Deep, Little Black Book, or Valentine, or for that matter La Luna.
By the by, that 8 isn't even the highest low score we'll see in this rate.
(We Use) The Same Punctuation was another Nowels/Shipley moment, and the original album version is, frankly, rather bland '80s AOR. Actually, that's an insult to '80s AOR. It's just bland. Thankfully, for the single release, it was pepped up with a new, more Debbie Gibson-ish mix, along with totally new (and much better) lyrics on the second verse. This version climbed to #6 in the UK, giving the album a new lease on life after the La Luna/Summer Rain/Runaway Horses/Vision of You string of flops. And while Vision was the only one of those that deserved its fate, (We Want) To Be Shania! actually deserved its success, I think. Yeah, it's "very good, not great," but honestly, "very good" is perfectly fine for a top ten hit - Christ knows how many #1's there have been that didn't even make that qualification. And it does feel like a bit of vindication for that run of undeserved floppage.
"A masterclass in anthemic chorus from the most anthemic album of her career," says @tylerc904 (10). "Glad it was a cute hit in the UK after some floppage." Well, gorgeous is, you know, gonna devour cute.
"Clearly the single release is far superior" - CLEARLY, @bonnieetclyde (10) - "and as with Leave a Light On or Runaway Horses, it's that smack-you-round-the-head chorus that grabs you and won't let go until you completely give in to its genius."
"The single mix of this is just killer - showing what the right remix can do to a good but pedestrian album track! (See also Five Star’s The Slightest Touch.) Deservedly a huge smash in the U.K., surprising as the album seemed dead by this point. The new intro with the ‘Hey, Hey’ bits really give it some drama and it never really lets up. A Belinda classic." This from @CasperFan (10). We should really have a thread in here on "single mixes that dramatically improved good but pedestrian album tracks." I nominate Can't Speak French and - unpopular opinion klaxon! - Untouchable.
"Okay, the single mix of this is a total bawp and now I’m wondering why I didn’t listen to this sooner. I especially love the melodies in the chorus," says @Seventeen Days (10). @unnameable (10) simply states the obvious: "The single mix we got in the UK is vastly better than the album version."
After all those 10's, let's hear from an 11, namely Mr @Hudweiser. "So it goes to the single version of WWTST - the first Belle song that really grabbed me thanks to THAT massive intro and the perfect chorus. It just never lets up. Awesome from start to finish."
6. A Woman and a Man - 7.25
Highest average: 8.65 (@pop3blow2... quelle surprise)
Lowest average: 5.89 (@Seventeen Days)
77. My Heart Goes Out to You - 5.89
70. He Goes On - 6.36
69. Remember September - 6.37
66. Love in the Key of C - 6.49
61. Listen to Love - 6.66
48. Kneel at Your Feet - 7.08
41. Love Doesn't Live Here - 7.31
32. A Woman and a Man - 7.65
30. California - 7.75
12. Always Breaking My Heart - 8.89
6. In Too Deep - 9.31
The last two albums to be revealed are the only two for which @pop3blow2 wasn't the highest scorer.
I have to laugh.gif
I mean maybe I overscored A Woman and a Man a tad... but in my ranking system my score is a B. I think that's pretty to close to my gut grade of it. (Maybe it's a B-... haha!)
I stick by my Real score, though!
The UK actually got Summer Rain after The Same Thing as the final single (bar the remixed Vision of Poo), for a well-timed December release. For a song about summer.
The Same Thing is probably my least favourite of the Horses singles (La Luna>Runaway Horses>Vision Of You>Leave A Light On>Summer Rain>The Same Thing), but it's still good. I remember getting the Horses album after having owned The Best Of for a while, and being overjoyed at the slightly longer versions of the likes of La Luna and Summer Rain. Imagine my horror, then, when the album version of The Same Thing came on. Dreadful.
And I'm with you, @VivaForever, in terms of the single remixes of Can't Speak French and Untouchable! See also Suburbia by The Pet Shop Boys.
You missed Always Breaking My Heart from that round up
@Wikipedia It was useless, thanks.
@Virgin Records It was useless, thanks.
And A Red Letter Day!
(We Want) A Summer Bop absolutely deserves its top 5 placing. The album version can choke.
Also, I knew I'd be lowest scorer on 'A Woman and a Man'. I have zero desire to listen to that album in full again.
Frankly, neither do I. Nor Real. Nor the debut. At least she gave us three amazing albums!
I'm shocked We Want... didn't make top 3.
Bubbly’s in the fridge.
4. Summer Rain - 9.45
Highest score: 11 (@tylerc904)
10 x 6 (@Hatbar, @Hudweiser, @CasperFan, @Robsolete, @unnameable, @Remorque)
Lowest score: 6.5 (@Untitled)
Despite sounding exactly like a Nowels/Shipley moment, Summer Rain was in fact written by Robbie Seidman and Maria Vidal. It only scraped #30 in the US and #23 in the UK, but was one of the Legend's best-charting singles in Australia at #6. Nonetheless, even that placement was outdone by dance group Slinkee Minx (yes, really) when they covered it in 2004, charting at #5. Belinda still had the last laugh, though, as she got #40 on the year-end charts, while Slinkee Minx got #61. Ha! Suffer. At any rate, Belinda's version was backed by - what else! - Shades of Michelangelo, and featured background vocals from Madonna's frequent sidekick Donna DeLory.
As stated previously, I've always been a bit puzzled as to why Belinda fans jizz themselves over this song. It's good - it's great! - but Heaven/Horses/Deep it ain't. Still, I gave it a 9, and it beat (We Love) A Shania Title! so again, ha! Suffer. I do like the sexiness of it - of the three Belinda songs I find sexy (all, incidentally, from the same album), I think Horses is more on the side of unbridled* joy and raw physicality; La Luna is somehow both dreamy and wistful, and a little sleazy; and Summer Rain is steamy.*
* Puns not intended.
Now, what does @Untitled (6.5) have to say about that score? "Overwrought with too many parts that don't compliment one other. I'd keep the guitar in the outro and bin the rest." Actually, that's... kind of fair. Gird your loins though, sis, they're coming for you. Remember when I gave I'm a Slave 4 U a 0 and everyone in the Britney rate was ready to skin me alive? Good times.
"I love the instrumental. Another strong chorus. The production could have been beefed up somewhat though," says @bonnieetclyde (8.5). On the one hand, I agree, a heavier chorus could have made this Leave a Light On part 2 (except better probably), but on the other hand, I think it would have lessened the song's charm.
"Belinda’s favourite I think?? And it’s not hard to see why," says @Hatbar (10). And if we needed a citation for that, here's one from @Seventeen Days (10). "I absolutely adore how the lyrics to this paint the image of a woman’s last dance in the rain with her boyfriend. I assume the man is being shipped off to war or something?" That is what the mention of a 'military train' would indicate, yes. "Either way, this one is top-notch and one of my favorites on the album. (Belinda once said in Billboard that it’s her most favorite of her solo tracks as well!)" Belinda preferring this to Heaven is one of the great mysteries of pop.
"Another potential 11, what an amazing record and unbelievable that it wasn’t a huge hit everywhere. I’m glad Slinkee Minx were at least able to widen it’s scope to some degree (and their version bops!)," notes @Hudweiser (10).
"A different sound for Belinda, not so rock-based, more laid back." An good point from @CasperFan (10) that I hadn't thought about; it certainly does stand out among the mostly rocky album. "I love the bridge building up to the chorus and that chorus - so instantly catchy. Even though the song is 5½ minutes long it never out stays its welcome. Why was this only a medium sized hit - it should’ve been huge!" Eh. "Like many of Belinda’s best songs it has a brilliant middle 8, and the outro with the violins and chanting…perfect!" If... you say so.
"For some reason, this has always been a Popjustice fave," @unnameable (10) correctly notes. "I can’t complain, as this is a perfect pop song. If I ever visit California and the summer rain is not gentle and amazing, I will be disappointed."
Closing with @tylerc904 (11), who says, "I remember deciding to explore her beyond her US hits on Spotify back in the day and being scalped instantly by this chorus. It's just as melodic as her signature tunes but also somehow subtle. Wistful and romantic and utterly deserving of being the legend herself's favorite tune." I was with you up until that very last part.
Imagine being Rick and Ellen writing all these amazing songs for Belinda, then reading in Billboard that Maria and Robbie swooped in and nicked Belinda's favourite of her solo recordings with one composition. Livid.
Anyway, I really like Summer Rain, but don't think it's the masterpiece lots of fans do. In fact, I'm with @Untitled: I don't think all its many sections necessarily stitch together that well. An example is after the middle eight when the song is trying to get back to the chorus. It seems to take forever and is really clunky. It's like they just gave up in the end and thought "fuck it, that'll do".
I actually thought this was a shoo-in for top 3, and a real contender for the winner. I'm glad it hasn't won, but now I'm worried Heaven will, which would be an unforgivable outcome!
Come on Runaway Horses!!!
Well, I think we all saw this coming...
3. Runaway Horses - 9.77
Highest score: 10 x 11
Lowest scores: 7.5 (@Seventeen Days), 9.5 (@Untitled)
So out of our thirteen voters, five gave (I'm Out) Of Clever Titles a score below 10, and at least six gave every other song in the rate below a 10. Now as we hit #3, suddenly only TWO did. And yet no one gave it an 11. Our MINDS.
Runaway Horses (another Nowels/Shipley moment of anthemic whatever) was my immediate favorite off the album. I didn't even know for a while that it had been a single in Europe and Australia, since it wasn't on Her Greatest Hits, and I guess I just hadn't noticed it on Wikipedia. I always remember listening to it my second or third year of college and fantasizing about my crush at the time. As one does.
The video is hilariously low-budget and literally just features Belinda standing alone in a house with a wind machine blowing on her. I highly recommend it solely for the kiis.
"I really enjoy how this track starts off kind of quiet and builds into the energy of the chorus. The subtle sound of the horses galloping after the middle 8 is a nice touch," says @Seventeen Days (7.5). Yes, that's perhaps the best part of the song.
The good sis @Untitled didn't submit any commentary, so here's a bunch of 10's.
"It builds and builds into a thing of wonder! Can’t beat belting this out." - @Hatbar
"Just dreamy; the kinda song that makes me wish I could teleport into the mind of a 13-year-old Canadian girl in 1989 and stay there." - @Hudweiser
This reminds me of @ohnostalgia's comment in my 1989 rate that Belinda must have been a horse girl growing up.
"What a bloody chorus! 'Oooh, baby hold on tight' indeed!" - @bonnieetclyde
"My sister always says this reminds her of Livin' on a Prayer but Jon Bon Jovi wishes." - @tylerc904
I went to a drag king show this past weekend (my first time going to Pride!) and they did Livin' on a Prayer, and I had never actually heard it before. I can hear the resemblance, but only just.
"This should have been the follow up to Leave A Light On as I think it would have fared better in the charts, but know this classic only reached number 40 in the U.K. - pop injustice of the highest level! You can see why Belinda opens her concerts with this one-the fabulously subdued, atmospheric 1st verse building up to that killer chorus (it reminds me a lot of Perfection by Cher), a guaranteed crowd pleaser! A brilliant middle 8 with the sound of horses galloping into that chorus again-what’s not to love!" - @CasperFan
"Always loved how unexpectedly punchy this chorus was." - @pop3blow2
Heaven Is a Place on Earth.
Leave a Light On.
Come on Leave A Light On!
Runaway Horses is incredible. Everything I think about it has been pretty much covered in the commentary above, and I certainly agree that it should have been the second single from the album (even if I do prefer La Luna by a nat's knacker). A great song that deserved to be a huge hit.
The sound horses galloping morphing into those crashing drums is nothing short of a musical orgasm.
Separate names with a comma.