Frankie Goes To Hollywood was the most overhyped, prepackaged band of 1984, and I loved them.
I still spin their debut album, Welcome to the Pleasuredome, a few times per year, and not in some sort of ironic or nostalgic way. It’s simply a great album. Trevor Horn’s production is on point, Holly Johnson’s vocals are fantastic, and the track sequencing makes for a sonic journey well worth taking. Sure, there are a few clunkers (“Krisco Kisses”) and horribly dated references (the Reagan impersonator’s monologue in “War”), but that’s all part of the fun.
Equally fun was collecting all of the various special pressings that accompanied the album. This little 7-inch picture disc of the album’s third single, “The Power of Love,” is just one of several Frankie discs I picked up, certain that in 35 years they would be, like, really valuable. I missed the boat on that one–you can find copies all day for five bucks or less–but they’re still cool little collectibles.
Like most fans, I was one and out with Frankie. I tried to like their sophomore effort, 1986’s Liverpool, but I just couldn’t get into it. But for one album they were glorious.