May 15, 2013

Top Ten Flashback: May 15, 1993

Join me once again, music fans, as I go back in time 20 years and see what Australia's top 10 singles were. This week was notable for me as one of my favourite bands hit number 1 for the second time. There was also a top 10 debut, a brother and sister both in the top 10, and two covers. Twenty years ago today I was 14 years old – it was the week ending Saturday, May 15, 1993. Got it sorted yet? Let's go.

10.  Southern Sons – "You Were There"

Hmmm, another ballad. This must have been off their second album, which went largely ignored on the charts. That doesn't mean it wasn't any good though, I just have no recollection of it.

9.  East 17 – "House Of Love"

I liked this song a lot and the dog motif worked well, but I can't help but laugh when watching the video 20 years later, mostly because of the idiotic dancing on display and those stupid hats. In East 17's defence, I'm sure they look back and cringe at this too, and have certainly moved on. Fun fact: East 17 were named after their London postcode, the area of which is Walthamstow, where I lived for the first year of my life.

8.  Arrested Development – "Mr. Wendal"

Third single by these guys. I liked them, they had something relevant to say without bashing you over the head with social consciousness. In 2014 I went to the Sydney Festival and they were performing a free show in the city, attended mostly by people who weren't even born when this single was released, to the exclusion of those actually old enough to remember it. Bummer.

7.  2 Unlimited – "No Limit"

"I'm makin' techno and I am proud". So you should be, mate. It was another monster hit for the Dutch duo, or foursome if you count the producers, which you ought to, of course. There would be one more top 10 single in Australia for them before the jig was up. Ostensibly filmed inside a pinball machine, the video could have been a bit more energetic, but I'm just nit-picking. I still like this one a lot.

6.  Michael Jackson – "Give In To Me"

Released during an era of his life which I'm sure he would rather forget, MJ nevertheless had another big hit. I quite liked it for its rockier sound, although I haven't heard it in 20 years.

5.  Peter Andre – "Gimme Little Sign"

I'll give you a sign, pal – it involves just one finger.

4.  Janet Jackson – "That's The Way Love Goes" ºº

Janet debuts at number 4, her first hit in ages. It was the lead single from the janet album and would have to stay here for two weeks before hitting the top for only one week, then being dethroned by Snow – who hadn't even shown up in the top 20 yet! Fairly low-key stuff here; I preferred later single "If".

3.  Ugly Kid Joe – "Cat's In The Cradle"

The first of two cover versions from yesteryear, this one came with a suitably creepy and typically early-'90s video, with weird random footage of dogs and swimming pools and stuff. A decent cover, for some reason Rage always used to cut the last 5 seconds of its video out. I could never figure out why. If you know, comment below and help ease my mental instability.

2.  Lenny Kravitz – "Are You Gonna Go My Way"

Come on, Leonard, it's "Are You Going To Go My Way", with a question mark at the end. Don't make me have to lecture you on proper grammar and punctuation. And don't think I didn't notice your missing apostrophe, Ugly Kid Joe.

1.  Faith No More – "Easy"

FNM seemed to have luck with four-letter titles starting with 'E', as this was their next – and so far, last – number one single in Australia after "Epic". It also continued their tradition of putting totally random crap on singles' cover artwork. Great cover and all that, but I never bought the single back in 1993. I should have. Why? Well, when Triple J did a J-Files special on Faith No More in 1997, they opened the show with "Das Schützenfest", one of the B-sides on this single. I turned on the radio too late to start my tape recording and missed the first two minutes of the song. Even though my crappy taped copy was half missing, I was addicted to the track, a weird polka soundalike sung in German. I had to have that song! From then on I scoured second hand shops for this single before finding it at the now sadly-defunct Compact Disc Library in Perth in 1998. And I played it really loud at uni in a lecture theatre and somehow didn't get into trouble. Happy days.

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