Pick of the Pops 12 (13.3.78)

Hot Chocolate - Everyone's a Winner: advert music. Rubbish. 1/10

Donna Summer - Rumour Has It: not Premier League Donna, perhaps, but great nevertheless. 8/10

Samantha Sang - Emotions: the most Barry Gibb'd-up song in the history of pop. Writer/producer Barry is like some big kid, spoiled bastard PE teacher who can't stop himself dribbling past a group of eleven year old on this one, swamping Samantha/Cheryl's delicate vocal with all sorts of ridiculous Bee Gees mannerisms (particularly his own ridiculous falsetto). A pity, as it's a good song. 6/10

Earth Wind and Fire - Fantasy: between 1977 and 1979, EWF were just awesome. Philip Bailey's vocal on this one is fabulous. 8/10

Elkie Brooks - Lilac Wine: sounds like it's been re-written from a French chanson, but is actually an American song from the early 1950s. Ponderous, but OK. 5/10

Bob Marley - Is This Love? I like a bit of Bob, me. 7/10

ELO - Mr Blue Sky: the return of the Farm Foods Fab 4! I quite like this one - especially the opportunity it affords to sing 'Mr Blue: you dirty rat!' - and that brilliantly pretentious reprise near the end of the record. 7/10

Brian and Michael - Matchstalk Men etc: probably the worst record of the 2021 Pick of the Pops season - and believe me, that's no mean feat. You could take any line or lyric from this song and it would make you vomit, but "The fever came and the Good Lord mopped his brow" is particularly emetic. An unbelievably mawkish and terrible song and - seemingly - number one forever back in 1978. 0/10

Darts - Come Back My Love: oh f***off. 1/10

Eruption - I Can't Stand the Rain: purists may argue, but this cover version of Ann Peebles' 1974 song is much better than the original. A great pop song. 8/10

Gerry Rafferty - Baker Street: with or without the Bob Holness* saxophone solo, this would have been an ace record. 8/10

Rose Royce - Wishing on a Star: a superb song and a brilliant, beautiful vocal from the goddess-like Gwen Dickey. 9/10

Abba - Take a Chance on Me: tremendous Europop with the usual disguised-in-plain-sight psychodrama lyrics. 8/10

Blondie - Denis: a band that made the British New Wavers look distinctly third-rate. A cover version (albeit an obscure one) admittedly, but what a sound! Everything about Blondie was just brilliant - and a breath of fresh air. 10/10

Kate Bush - Wuthering Heights: some people think I didn't like Cilla Black (some even made not-so veiled threats when I reviewed her re-issued albums for James's wonderful web site), but my antipathy for one of Merseyside's most toxic Tories is as nothing compared to what I feel for Faith Brown, and because of that other toxic Tory's (Tautology Klaxon! ) unfunny sketch, I find it difficult to listen to Katie's jolly slice of prog-pop any more. There was a tremendous Marilyn Monroe impersonator on The Chase the other week; it only served to remind me of FB's risible efforts - and of course her racist impression of Rusty Lee, along with her her many other crimes. Wuthering Heights also reminds me of the need for great (pop) artists NOT to allow their brothers to design the covers of their debut albums and the fact that I'm the only KB fan I know of whose favourite album (of hers) is 'Lionheart'. 7/10
Next week: Peter Gabriel's 'Tarby' legacy.

Gambaccini: Mr Money For Old Rope didn't play Andy Cameron's 'Ally's Tartan Army'! It had gone up six places and it's a classic! The bastard! 5/10

Programme as a whole: good this week. 9/10

Worst Song: B and M
Best: Blondie (click on pic below for song) 

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*I KNOW, I know!