Thursday, October 2, 2014

FIVE-Invincible (1999)


It wasn't exactly a do or die situation, but I would feel invincible if I shared this second album by the British five-piece boyband (oh, that was me paying tribute to the lyrics to a favorite Pat Benatar classic and using that as a segue to introduce this post). Maybe the guys themselves felt invincible—or at least on the top of the world—in their late-90's heyday. And what group wouldn't after such a successful debut release? My CD copy, however, most likely won't be invincible, considering the number of times I've played it, but the jams still sounds as fresh as ever! Didn't let the rainy October gloom outdoors get me down indoors one bit while I was gettin' down again with the memorable opener, "If Ya Gettin' Down". Nothing like an upbeat boyband jam with an infectious retro groove to get me in the music mood! So many memorable upbeat dance/pop jams, actually. There's "Don't Wanna Let You Go" (and I've supplied the cool 'Biffco Extended Mix' as a bonus), the inspirational "Keep On Movin'" (I'd forgotten how much I love that song, especially the part when the guys do that smooth harmonizing 'ahhhhh' in the main hook), the mellowed-down "Everyday" (I recall loving that sweet melody of the fluttery flute, plus the way the beat swings with that snazzy, street-smart record-scratching effect), the hip-hop track "Serious" (forget which one of the guys that does it, but I like that straining acapella 'yeah' sung at the very beginning, then the deep-voiced member who shouts 'you gotta get', 'come on' and the 'ha ha' in the main hook), "Two Sides To Every Story" (love that crisp, hard mid-90's dance pop!) and their awesome collaboration with QUEEN on their 90's-style remaking of the immortal 80's classic, "We Will Rock You" (wow, this remake totally rocks the house, and it totally fits FIVE's brash, in-your-face style!). And who can forget their fun, hip-hop twist on the theme song to the popular 80's cartoon, "Inspector Gadget"? I almost did myself, which is why it's nice to dig out these CD's and take them out for another spin every so often. I like the line in the lyrics that goes 'if you do the crime, you're gonna do the time'. But I honestly did forget about one great song in particular:"Battlestar". Yeah, sure sounds like the guys were going into battle alright, given the epic production with the movie-quality orchestrating leading the way. Then there are a few offerings that are impossible to forget because the lyrics come from the heart and the accompanying melodies sound so nice on the ears: "You Make Me A Better Man", "It's Alright" and the album's magical title track itself. Oh, and something else that's real nice, too: "Sunshine". This one's just feel-food times all the way through with a breezy, downtempo beat keeping things warm and lovely all the way through. And although it wasn't on my original CD, I felt this album wouldn't feel completely invincible without the thrilling 'Megamix', which ties up "Don't Wanna Let You Go", "We Will Rock You", "If Ya Gettin' Down" and "Keep On Movin'" and gifts them to the listener in one small but beautiful package:

1. If Ya Gettin' Down
2. Keep On Movin'
3. Don't Wanna Let You Go
4. We Will Rock You
5. Two Sides To Every Story
6. You Make Me A Better Man
7. Invincible
8. It's Alright
9. Serious
10. How Do Ya Feel?
11. Everyday
12. Mr. Z
13. Sunshine
14. Battlestar
15. Inspector Gadget

*****BONUS TRACKS*****

16. Megamix
17. Don't Wanna Let You Go [Biffco Extended Mix]
18. Keep On Movin' [Five-A-Side Mix]

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