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Pop Life

Bananarama

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Album Review

Despite the title, the sole Bananarama album to feature Siobhan Fahey's replacement, Jacquie O'Sullivan, is the vocal trio's decisive break from pop music into Hi-NRG dance. Recorded with a variety of writer/producers ranging all the way back to their original mentor, Steve Jolley (also including Stock-Aitken-Waterman, the architects of their biggest hits, and former Killing Joke bassist Youth, for alt-dance cred), the songs are united by their emphasis on MIDI synthesizers and canned beats. Lacking their most distinctive vocalist (the competent but colorless O'Sullivan was no match for Fahey's occasionally off-key yelp), the trio sounds utterly anonymous, like session singers on their own album. More to the point, whoever suggested that the Doobie Brothers' stoner rock anthem "Long Train Running" was a suitable vehicle for an electronic dance-pop remake should be punished. Severely. That said, the acid house-tinged single "Tripping on Your Love" is actually pretty good.

Biography

Formed: 1981 in London, England

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

The most successful British girl group in pop history, Bananarama formed in London in late 1981. Drawing equal inspiration for their name from the children's television program The Banana Splits and the Roxy Music song "Pyjamarama," the trio was comprised of lifelong friends Keren Woodward and Sarah Dallin along with Siobhan Fahey, whom Dallin befriended at the London College of Fashion. After getting their start singing at friends' parties and at nightclubs (where they performed accompanied by backing...
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Pop Life, Bananarama
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