Sunday, 1 March 2015

REWIND: Elastica - 'Waking Up'

It's that time again where every week I pick my favourite song from those that entered the charts 20 years ago in 1995. Every week a Twitter account called @ThisIsMyJam95 invites followers to pick their favourite new entry of the week, and I have decided to take it a step further by listening to ALL of the new entries before picking the best of the bunch. This week's chart is from February 25 1995, and can be seen in full HERE.

At number 25 we have Mike And The Mechanics with the friendly but dull 'Over My Shoulder', and Stevie Wonder's sickly number 23 entry 'For Your Love' is way below the standard of his best work, but this is admittedly due to its woeful production. At least Stevie's songwriting talents hadn't quite sunk to the level of whoever penned PJ And Duncan's 'Our Radio Rocks', which stunk out the number 17 position.

Punk rockers The Offspring entered the charts at 37 with the brilliant, angsty 'Self Esteem', while Pearl Jam's enjoyable 'Not For You' went in at number 34, and Thunder bagged a number 31 place with their wildly unfashionable but catchy classic rock number 'River Of Pain'. At number 29, Gun's country-flavoured beauty 'The Only One' proved their was a lot more to them than their cover of 'Word Up'. Moby's uptempo number 28 entry 'Everytime You Touch Me' provides the chart with a fine bit of 90s Euro-style techno cheese, and EMF scored what must have been one of their last chart entries at 27 with the rather funky 'Perfect Day'. Bon Jovi's 'Someday I'll Be Saturday Night' has to be one of the finest songs by this love-or-hate-them group who are definitely one of my guilty pleasures. It was the week's second highest new entry at number 9, while Madonna's hypnotic 'Bedtime Story' took the number 4 spot. But there can only be one winner this week: the song that went in at number 13, which happens to be a classic of the Britpop era. Elastica's 'Waking Up' was taken from the band's superb new wave/post-punk flavoured self-debut album, which was released the following month. The album hit number one and at the time was one of the fastest selling debut albums in UK chart history. Vocalist Justine Frischmann's then-partner Damon Albarn contributed keyboards to the song.

Elastica were sued for plagiarism by the publishers of The Stranglers, Complete Music, who (quite reasonably) claimed that 'Waking Up' resembled The Stranglers' track 'No More Heroes'. The case was settled out of court before Elastica's album was released. Elastica agreed to pay Complete Music 40 percent of the royalties from the album, and The Stranglers were also given a co-writing credit on the song. Elastica went onto become one of the biggest casualties of Britpop's drug scene, as heroin use tore the band apart, resulting in a five year wait for their second and final album 'The Menace' in 2000.


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