Album Review: Faith: Special Edition by George Michael
Exceptionally Good, Based on 5 Critics
Rolling Stone - 100 Based on rating 5/5
Why wasn't George Michael's "Hard Day" one of the biggest hits of 1988? Because every other song on his album already seemed to be on the charts. Faith — which produced six Top Five singles — established Michael as a full-grown Brit-funk stud, with "I Want Your Sex" setting up his female fans for years of disappointment. The album holds up as one of the Eighties' smartest megapop statements, full of passion and surefire hooks.
As latter-day glamazons like Adam Lambert and Lady Gaga have shown, the Wham! man?s influence still looms large. So shake a (sequined) tail feather for this massive multimedia edition of Faith, Michael?s 1987 solo debut, which tricks out the original 10-track album with remixes, documentary footage, and a handsome hardcover book that finds the singer describing his look at the time as ?fairy biker.? He wants our sex, and he can have it. A .
Combine George Michael’s many public scandals with the lingering memory of his time with cheesy British duo Wham! and it becomes difficult to recall anything all that positive about the guy. In fact, this reissue of his 1987 solo debut was delayed because of a drug-related jail sentence. But now that it’s finally out—remastered and, in this edition, packaged with a bonus CD and DVD—it serves as a reminder of Michael’s relevance in the pop landscape.Faith, of course, includes the controversial ode to lust “I Want Your Sex,” and the album’s recognizable title track has its own reference to bodies touching.
“Well, I guess it would be nice. ” You guess? It would be? Nice? Do you ever get the sense that George Michael was given a lot more credit for bringing the essence, if not the reality, of his sex life to radio airwaves than is actually reflected in his lyrics, if not persona? Do you think maybe, just maybe, his canniest move wasn’t to start playing all his own instruments and writing all his own songs, but to coyly leave open a number of strategically placed blanks for the rest of the world to fill? Yes, one of the most notorious hits from Faith—the nonuple-barreled blockbuster album that is almost more famous now for setting into motion the remainder of his escapist career, beginning with the Emancipation Proclamation that is Listen Without Prejudice, Vol. 1— probably set a then-new record for the number of times the word “sex” was uttered in a four-minute pop song.
Strip away the nonsense surrounding its maker since, and Faith is an enduring pop classic. Ian Wade 2011 Even now, by today’s accelerated standards, that in a five-year span George Michael went from singing about having fun on the dole, simultaneously launching a solo career while clocking up a string of global chart-toppers with his mate Andrew, to multi-platinum success in America, is still rather mind-blowing. It’s a career trajectory that has fuelled the most ambitious artists in his wake, desperate to emulate such a broad crossover.