Wednesday, 20 February 2019

25 Years Ago This Week: February 20, 1994

It's not every week a future number 1 single enters the ARIA chart.

East 17 enjoyed one of the biggest hits by a boy band ever

It's even less common for two chart-toppers to debut in the one week.

Celine Dion finally enjoyed a big solo hit with a remake of... a big hit

But that's what happened this week in 1994 when a big boy band hit and a big ballad both burst into the top 50 on their way to the very top of the chart.

ARIA Top 50 Singles and Albums Chart - week ending February 20, 1994

Meanwhile, "Give It Up" by Cut 'n' Move, which would end up making way at the top for one of this week's new entries, held down the number 1 spot for a third week. 


Off The Chart
Number 100 "Another Sad Love Song" by Toni Braxton
Peak: number 57
Toni Braxton's Australian chart career got off to a slow start with this LA Reid & Babyface (and Daryl Simmons) production, which would return to the top 100 (but not do any better) once she'd hit the top 50 a couple of times.

Number 99 "The River" by The Tea Party
Peak: number 99
Also hitting the chart for the first time were Canadian rock band The Tea Party with their debut single, which actually came from their second album (but first major label release), Splendor Solis.

Number 96 "Everyday" by Phil Collins
Peak: number 66
In the '80s, this probably would've done much better, but by 1994, this type of adult contemporary soft rock ballad - the second single from Both Sides - just didn't work anymore.

Number 93 "Talk Of The Town" by John Farnham
Peak: number 61
Speaking of sounding dated... this dinky, country-flavoured little number by Farnsey felt just as out of place with what was happening in music in the mid-'90s.

Number 92 "Berlin Chair" by You Am I
Peak: number 73
It would go on to be one of the most popular local songs of the decade, but You Am I's top 100 debut made a rather underwhelming impression on the chart upon release.

Number 84 "You Can't Make Love Without A Soul" by Jimmy Barnes
Peak: number 84
Anything Farnsey can do... Barnesy also found himself on the wrong side of the top 50 this week with this second single from Flesh And Wood

Number 81 "Mortal Kombat" by The Immortals
Peak: number 55
These techno computer game tie-in tracks never did that well in Australia. The Immortals was a Belgian dance duo comprised of Olivier Adams and Maurice Engelen (aka Praga Khan of "Injected With A Poison" fame).

Number 76 "The Favourite" by DIG
Peak: number 63
Their self-titled EP had given them a taste of chart success in 1993, and this is the single for which the local acid jazz band were best known.


New Entries
Number 43 "You Open My Eyes" by Hoodoo Gurus
Peak: number 43
The only new entry of the week not to reach number 1 was Hoodoo Gurus' second single in a row to peak in the 40s. "You Open My Eyes" is otherwise notable for being the first single released by the Australian rock band with guitarist Brad Shepherd on lead vocals.




Number 33 "The Power Of Love" by Celine Dion
Peak: number 1
Entering the top 50 six places lower than the dance version by Beverly re-entered the chart, Celine Dion's take on mega-ballad "The Power Of Love" would finally be the song to turn her into the global megastar record company Sony were willing her to become. And then some. Equalling the peak of the original Jennifer Rush version - no mean feat, given it hadn't even been a decade since that had topped the chart - Celine's deathly slow rendition somehow manages to make almost five minutes feel like an eternity. Despite Australia embracing the French Canadian wholeheartedly over the next few years, this was actually the point at which I jumped off the Celine train, having been a fan of her previous self-titled album. Of course, this was also the point at which I was working in music retail while at uni, and so I would sell a stack of Celine Dion albums in the years to come.




Number 25 "It's Alright" by East 17
Peak: number 1
While it would take Celine a good few weeks to get to number 1, this final, radically remixed single from East 17's debut album, Walthamstow, would top the chart within a fortnight and stay there for seven straight weeks, keeping Celine at bay for the last four of those weeks. One of the biggest boy band hits of all time in Australia, "It's Alright" played that classic game of starting off as a dramatic ballad before, a good minute and ten seconds in, bursting into a dance-pop banger. So excited was I by this new version of the song, having heard it played on UK Chart Attack in late 1993, that I snapped it up on import straight away - and would've paid close to $20 for the privilege. 




Listen to this week's new entries on my Spotify playlist of all the top 50 hits from 1994 (updated weekly):





Next week: a deluge of dance tracks, plus two hits from female singers - one a cover of a weepy ballad and the other a song about a breakfast cereal.


Back to: Feb 13, 1994 <<<<<<<<<<<<<  GO  >>>>>>>>>>>>> Forward to: Feb 27, 1994


1 comment:

  1. The Mortal Kombat song sounds 2 Unlimited-esque, minus the vocals.

    I caught 'The Power of Love' video on the new releases episode of rage aired just before Xmas '93. The ARIA Report has its release date as 6 December '93. Why it took nearly 3 months to take off locally, I've no idea. Agree with you that this is the point where Celine became a bit too... MOR for my tastes. Though the next single had some 'funk', and I liked 'Think Twice'.

    'It's Alright' would be my favourite East 17 single. Not having heard the LP version before, the single version is a vast improvement. LOL at paying close to $20 for the import single. Ah, the things we had to do sometimes back then.

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