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Music: Frankie Goes To Hollywood

Frankie Goes to Hollywood was a British dance and pop band in the mid- and late 1980s. Coming out of Liverpool, they released many singles and a couple of albums, then promptly vanished into the abyss. They released all sorts of 1980s goodness along the way.

Albums:
  • 1984 - Welcome to the Pleasuredome ("Relax", "Two Tribes", "The Power of Love" and the title track were all big hits)
  • 1986 - Liverpool (lead single "Rage Hard" was a hit; two further singles "Warriors Of the Wasteland" and "Watching The Wildlife" did less well and the album in general was considered a flop compared to the huge success of its predecessor)

Tropes:

  • Badass Boast: The narration in some remixes of "Two Tribes" says: "You may pronounce us guilty a thousand times over, but the Goddess of the Eternal Court of History will smile and tear to tatters the brief of the state prosecutor and the sentence of this court, for she acquits us."
    • This is a bit of a Genius Bonus - the words are a translation of a speech given by Adolf Hitler at his trial over the Beer Hall Putsch.
  • Black Comedy: "Two Tribes", especially the extended mixes when Patrick Allen gets going: "Mine is the last voice you will ever hear."
  • A Date with Rosie Palms: What else do you think "Relax" is about?
  • Detail-Hogging Cover/Wall of Text: The artwork for Welcome to the Pleasuredome and its accompanying singles were absolutely loaded with text by resident ZTT musical journalist Paul Morley, whose work also appeared on all ZTT artists' albums at the time. This includes both the myriads of anecdotal text scattered everywhere, as well as the factual text ("Two Tribes"' sleeve was covered with information about nuclear weapons.)
  • Epic Rocking: The title track of Welcome To The Pleasuredome, including its intros, is 16 minutes long (13 without them.)
  • Extreme Omnisexual: In one of the interview snippets used between tracks on the "Two Tribes" single, one of the band members claims to be this as Rule of Funny.
  • Fading into the Next Song: Although they didn't usually fade exactly, the singles were largely presented as programmes rather than individual tracks (CD singles without indexing, 12" singles without banding). The first side of Welcome to the Pleasuredome, originally pressed as one 16-minute block, did include fades, however.
  • I Am the Band: By some people's reckoning, producer Trevor Horn was this on the first album, the actual band - apart from Holly Johnson - appearing very little on it (Stephen Lipson supposedly forced them to play on the second album "for their own good").
  • One-Hit Wonder: Their song "Relax" was this in the States. They had a few more successes in Britain, however.
  • The Place: Liverpool. Ironically, they were in tax exile at the time, so it was mainly recorded in The Netherlands.
  • Power Ballad: "The Power of Love".
  • Protest Song: "Two Tribes"
  • Record Producer: Their first album was one of Trevor Horn's great triumphs as a producer. He didn't produce the follow-up, leaving it to his protege Stephen Lipson - which may at least partly account for its different sound.
  • Rearrange the Song: The singles were basically all about Trevor Horn showing off his skills at this.
    • "Relax" started out as a 17-minute studio jam, consisting only of the signature bass/hi-hat thump, Holly's singing and noises made by throwing objects or jumping into a pool. The version we currently recognize as "Relax" is actually the fifth released version of the song.
  • Rerelease the Song: They're still a reliable banker for ZTT Records and their singles (well, those from the first album - Liverpool doesn't get quite the same love) have been endlessly reissued in countless configurations. Welcome to the Pleasuredome got some critical disdain for re-releasing "Relax", "Two Tribes" and "War" for the umpteenth time already.
  • Self Demonstrating Song: One of the 12" mixes of "Rage Hard" has a female narrator explaining the track's structure, introducing the band and the instruments, and commenting on the music.
  • Shout-Out: "The Power Of Love" makes reference to The Hooded Claw. "Welcome To The Pleasuredome" has a shout out to "Kubla Khan", and "Rage Hard" alludes to Dylan Thomas' "Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night".
  • Stop and Go: Both "Relax" and "Two Tribes" do this.
  • Take That: The 12" version of "The Power of Love" begins with Chris Barrie impersonating Mike Read in a send-up of the DJ's refusal to play "Relax".

FalcoNew Wave MusicGang Of Four
The FallPost PunkGang of Four
ForeignerMusic of the 1980sPeter Gabriel
FlorrieMusicians/PopThe Fray

alternative title(s): Frankie Goes To Hollywood
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