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Overall Rating: 8.865 (29 Votes)
The album "Older" is an expression of George's ongoing musical evolution. It is, in many ways, far more mature than "Faith" in that it releases his depression in a very beautiful way. "Jesus to a Child" is obviously a very heart-felt ballad (and -- George?-- if you could do us the little favor of a tour, we wouldn't clap after it, because we know you hate that...)
"FastLove" is a typical GM peice in some ways; almost like "I Want Your Sex" in that it --um?-- encourages that kind of behaviour; but it has also evolved: the rythmn's funkier, the words more heartfelt. "Older" the song is a declaration of things that have been learned through time. The entire "Older" CD is fabulous, and anyone who hasn't heard it should.
George's voice is as sweet and smooth as ever. Rating: 9.0 (some of the later songs aren't perfect!!)
Harmony - 7/9/96
While I too have to admit that I was a little disappointed with "Older" at first, I fail to see how anyone could dislike it now after giving it a
good listen. "Older" is not the kind of album you can get into upon a first listen or maybe even a second listen. It is truly a work of art.
Like fine wine, it must be sipped. I find this album to be so engaging.
I liked "Faith" and "LWP," but they simply don't compare to this effort. Songs like "Older," "It Really Doesn't Matter," and "Jesus..." speak to the human condition, which many artists shy away from. "You have been loved" is a masterpiece of sound. Granted I'd probably love anything that George released, but I have really grown to appreciate the sheer splendor that makes George a true ARTIST. Many have pointed out that they want more of what made George a star. People get real. We are aging at the same rate he is. Thus, as a fan it seems odd to me that some of you are still stuck in the land of "Faith." I love that album, and I play it all the time. But the truth is, it is a reminder of my childhood. "Older" is as it should be, an album about life. After all if you have been through half of what this man has had to endure, how can you possibly not relate to each and every song. My rating, a 9.99 (we must always leave room for improvement).
Roderick - 13/8/96
Older... is atrist's different view on music as itself, Older is a fabulous experience, Older is an artwork of unimaginable musical value,
Older goes much further than Listen Without Prejudice did, Older is (very similarly to Tori Amos' Boys For Pele as Andrej said) excellent new piece
of Unexplored. Enough of fussing about nothing, my final rating is 9.5/10 and I still think I'm VERY severe...
Daniel - 12/8/96
I love the song "Fastlove" and bought the CD. I was disappointed with it because I was hoping it would be more upbeat. Older is like the last
album-mellow. There are some good songs on it like "You Have Been Loved" and "The Strangest Thing". But I am still waiting for another album like
"Faith" to come out of George. Until then I will just have to listen to "Fastlove" over and over and over. - NR
Debbie - 27/7/96
When I first heard Older, I was disappointed, but the more I listen to it the more I love it. The music is a bit too sophisticated for just one listen. Especially "The Strangest Thing," which is my favorite. I, too, would like to hear George do some more "Fantasy"-like dance tracks, but let's face it, the man's been through some rough times in the last few years -- maybe he's just not in the mood.
Fastlove is a good example that he still has the skills to do it. (Who hasn't gone out "looking for some affirmation" after they've lost a love.) Anyway, I worry about the guy...he sounds so depressed. I hope he finds someone or something to make him happy. When that happens (if it hasn't already), he'll write some happier, jiving music.
Rumor has it that he had an entirely different, upbeat album finished before Anselmo Feleppa died, maybe he'll release that later. Overall, I think the album is genius, and I'm not just saying that because I've been a fan for 13 years. And the little "Thank you for waiting" thing almost brought me to tears. George seems like a good friend I haven't seen in a while and I'm glad to have him back. I'm glad to hear someone else's friends are all getting married and having babies, too. Ha! The Album's a 9, and that's only because I expect him to do something even better bext time -- Gotta save room on the rating scale!
P.S. If you like the new "I'm Your Man" You should probably check out the Lisa Moorish single titled "I'm Your Man" it was released in England last year, and George adapted it for his U.S. track. International Order number 850 093-2. Go Beat Records.
Melissa - 7/6/96
I too have been eagerly awaiting the new album. But for perhaps a different reason.
I was a high school student when FAITH emerged, I hated George Michael for what he reperesented - everything I was NOT - and the image he presented made me feel bad about myself. Although I loved the song MONKEY, I still abhorred and shunned George.
Then LISTEN WITHOUT PREJUDICE came out. It was amazing. Not only was every song superbly executed, I had a profound respect for the man. I wanted so much to be able to tell George I forgave him for the image he had portrayed - on this album he seemed to tell everyone he knew what he had done, regretted it, and had changed. I loved the man for that. It was beautiful, as was the album.
Now, after years of disappointing efforts, we have OLDER. I'll admit, not as good as LISTEN..., but JESUS TO A CHILD is a spectacular piece of work. I also enjoy IT DOESN'T REALLY MATTER and STAR PEOPLE. But it lacks the beauty and subtleties of LISTEN... I actually listened to LISTEN.. in my car to and from work (an hour a day) for 3 weeks solid, and there was a unique blend on that album - one tear jerking song, then a happy fun song, then another tear jerker - THAT made it brilliant. I'm afraid on this album, however, he was more angry at SONY (was it SONY?) and perhaps tried a little too hard so say "Hey, I'm damn good, and take a look at this!"
Might I suggest this for the next album: Go back to the basics George. You love to write and sing. Tell it to us from your heart. You worked out your frustration on this album. No need to give in to the popularity of house and techno. Do what YOU want and love, and we will love it. Suggested title: LISTEN WITHOUT PREJUDICE VOL. 2. You've had VOL 1, and there is nothing so disappointing as having a title with VOL. 1 on it when you have no intention of releasing a second volume. Do it for us, do it for yourself.
We love you. I forgive you. Peace. - NR
email@example.com - 6/6/96
I purchased George Michael's Older after hearing "Fast Love" on the radio. It was so nice to hear his voice on the airwaves again. I listened to the CD for 5 days driving back and forth to school. It seems to me that this is a melancholy album and not as good as Listen Without Prejudice, but it is still George!!! - NR
firstname.lastname@example.org - 6/6/96
I have been a GM fan ever since he go go onto the air waves. However, I have to say I am a little dissapointed becasuse the album drags a bit.The album would have went to number one if there would have been a coulple of rough and tough dance tunes.I don't want to another faith but what I want is something to dance to and dream a little; That is what pop stars are about and GM is are last honest pop star.A couple of years ago he released freedom 90 and the b side Fantasy was excellent, were are those types of songs?His he saving them for latter?.On older star people is classic GM because there is tension
and release.Every song shouldn't have this but as we can see the album is falling in the charts.I feel GM should have fun he out of the contract get back to wham days, not to revert, but at least he appeared to make us beleive it was fun to sing and dance to his tunes. If I was George do one of two things. Remix Spinning wheel and release it, and then perhaps Older and next release star people.Or release another album full of aggressive tunes for the Christmas season. - NR
Steven - 6/6/96
Hey.....I love George Michael and anxiously awaited his latest release. Listening to the disc, my worst fears were realized. He was so self righteous in his battle with Sony that even though he may have wanted to issue a more "popular" sounding release, all the years of standing on ceremony forced him to put out a "serious" LP. I never thought that he would release an album that was s l o w e r and moodier than Listen Without Prejudice. My God there are what, two upbeat and danceable tracks? All of this "new masterpiece" and "new post-MTV jazz genre" crap makes me sick. If I want Sinatra, I buy Sinatra. If I want serious, but well entrenched, pop music I have no one to turn to anymore. Come back George. Some of us still miss you. This gets a 5 of 10 in my book.
Scott - 6/6/96
I've been listening to George since the 80's. He has a lot to say and have found a way to make people listen. I think the
press have been especially hard on him but I don't think he really cares what their review is. This Album older is for the
faithful listeners who have stayed loyal to him and this is his way of saying thanks to the fans.
Don - 3/6/96
I'm George Michael's fan for a long time mainly because he really IS a talented musician. I'm not playing this little bothering game of cathegorizing music into boxes with stickes "Pop", "Rock", etc. and so I do not mind at all if George did that kind of music then and does this kind of music now. As long as he's still good, original and interesting, there's nothing that could hinder me from buying his every new record. As it is for example with Tori Amos each George Michael's new title is a world by itself, it's more complex and mature. Each new record is taken from 'a different corner' of this artist's mind. Older, similarly to Tori's Boys for Pele, is taken from the deepest corner so far. As we ourselves usually have some trouble getting used to deep, hidden places of our mind, it's not as easy to get into Older as it was to get into Listen W.P. or Faith.There are many reasons why I think Older is the best piece from George
Michael so far but I'm not going to waste the space of this site with my (surely) controversial ideas about this (surely) controversial title so let me just summarize it all by a final rating: 10/10
Andrej - 31/5/96
I bought "Older" on its first day of release and have found it difficult to play anything else since. It certainly stands a beating on the
MTV on the net has a very lukewarm review of the album, but I think the reviewer has missed the point completely. If it wasn't time before, it certainly is time now to stop comparing George Michael's music to that of the latest teen sensation. The depth of feeling (real or imaginary**) in his lyrics and delivery and the musicality of it are highly impressive, without being pretentious or over-produced. It stands up to close comparision with other music I particularly like - Joan Armatrading and Joni Mitchell, for instance. I have been listening to these women for 20 years and more and I know a album with longevity when I hear it - I will be listening to "Older" in years to come.
**of course, no-one expects novelists or short story writers to write from life - they are assumed to have a vivid imagination. songwriters, on the other hand, are assumed to have no imagination and write each and every time from life.
However, and despite my previous statement, I have a question you may be able to answer - has Jack Panos died? or do I read too much into "you have been loved"? I read somewhere on the net that this song was a thinly-veiled tribute to Lesley Panos. - NR
Cheers! Louise - 30/5/96
I'm pleased to find so many people out there who recognize not only the amazing quality and technique (check out the production credits for each tune) but the guts behind the man who took on the music industry to break away from a pop mold and stand on his own merit. Listen without Prejudice was more than a title, it was a request, and that recording remains one of my favorite. Older stands strong beside it and on it's own. I had once heard a rumour that there was to be a LWPII, I wonder if some of these selections were intended for it. When I first got LWP I played it to death, and still do. Older will see as much playtime if not more. It was worth the wait.-NR
I was happy to see a new album by George Michael in years, but in the first few times listening to it, I find myself longing for his past works. I know he's not out to please everyone, but the tracks dragged
and seemed much too darkened and somber for my taste. I will always be a fan, just perhaps longing more for the music that made him for what he is. I will most likely memorize every lyric to the album, especially to the "Like Jesus..." and the "Fast Love" tracks, but will probably not listen to the whole piece quite as often. I give it a 6.9 out of a 10.
After taking a couple of weeks to digest the new album I would have to give it a perfect 10! Older is the only CD I
have been listening to for the past two weeks! The first time I listened to it I really liked it even though I thought it was too
mellow--I wanted a little more KICK! However, as I listened to the words and really heard the music, I fell in love with each song. A few of my favorites besides "Jesus to a Child" and "Fastlove" are "Spinning the Wheel", "The Strangest Thing" and "Star People". "Move On" reminds me of the jazzy feel of "Kissing a Fool" which is my all time favorite George Michael song. My only fear is that the album will not be well received by critics and others. I haven't read that many reviews, but the ones I have read have been negative. Have you noticed this to be the trend? I would love to hear some positive reviews. This album definitely shows an "older" George. George has been in control of every aspect of the creation of this album and you can tell that the songs are a deep expression of himself and his efforts of the past six years. I am glad that he is finally sharing them with us!
Crystal - 28/5/96
I am very impressed with George's album " older". The title is perfect.I love every song. The music is sensuous, the lyrics stimulating.The photography of George is superb, he looks wonderful-very sexy! I especially like his dedication and comment " thanks for waiting " on the back.It was well worth waiting for and I look forward to the next CD.
Congrats George on its success!
an adoring fan since the days of "Wham" - NR
Annie - 26/5/96
I love the new CD 'Older'. I can't even pick a favorite song because it changes day to day. I have been a fan of George's from the beginning of his career. It was a long wait but it was worth it. Now I am just praying that he goes on a U.S. tour. I give the albun a rating of 9.5
Keep up the good work George!
This CD is a goddamned masterpiece. At first when I listened to it, I was a little disappointed; I was expecting the usual "ear candy" like "Everything She Wants" or "Father Figure." But this music is deeper and more sophisticated. When it does grow on you, you appreciate it more than you ever did the older hits. You can really hear the Jobim influence (one of the VERY few songwriters I place above GM), but George has not copied Jobim so much as fused these bossa nova/jazz sounds with his own incredible pop melody-making. On top of that, he has even thrown in some techno influence. In the end, "Older" is a classic because it creates a new, delectable genre: techno-lounge, a mellow new pop-jazz, appropriate for a maturing generation who has outgrown MTV and is thirsting for music of substance. GEORGE, YOU'RE BRILLIANT. RATING: 10!!!!
Best songs: To be forgiven, It doesn't really matter, Star People, Spinning the Wheel
JC - 23/5/96
When I first bought the CD I expected a different thing from George, but as everybody has said, this CD is so addictive, and with time you get so much in to the lyrics and the music.
Although I would've given it a 7/10 on May 15, still that wouldn't have been fare, because today (May 18) I give it a 10 out of 10.
People, George has changed, and he keeps on asking you not to put him in the cage of what you want him to be, so don't....
The Faith days are over, and we should all be happy that at least he made us go through that experience, but now George is different and his music is OLDER.
Listen to "Spinning The Wheel" and "The Strangest Thing", and I bet you will feel that they are the best songs ever.
Haitham - 18/5/96
Even though it is very different to his past albums, I still love it!!!
I love everything that he has done,he is the most tallented artist out there. I would give the album a 10!!!!!!!!!!!!
Don't you think I'm looking older?
Yes, but it's no important.
The life is a dream, a short dream. Love, the only real thing.
One hour, one day,one year, one life, one dream.
I grow up with Yog, with his songs, with his music.
I'm here again.
Great,melancholy,realistic, 'Older' is the cd I listen now, and tomorrow, and the next month, and again,again.
Jesus,Fastlove,Older,Move On,Spinning the wheel, my favourites songs.- Rating: 9/10
P.S. I wait your concert in Italy,Yog!
User - 17/5/96
I have to say that I'm a little disappointed. Apart from tracks like 'Jesus..'; 'Older', 'You Have been loved', and 'Star People', I didnt really enjoy the other tracks very much; its almost like I had to wait for them to grow on me, unlike past George Michael albums(esp LWP) where I would like a song immediately. Maybe I'm just not mature( or 'Older'!) enough to appreciate the new sound, but I do appreciate the fact that he's grown as anartist and is not afraid to experiment.- Rating: 7.5
Anju - 17/5/96
Bought "Older" yesterday--very disappointed. I have been a George Michael fan for a long time and that won't change. However, I am taking the CD back to Target today--it's on sale for $11.99 and they had plenty. THAT plus a review I read of the album should have told me something. Frankly, I thought he was smarter than this. And six years is a long time between albums--so I'm thinking suing Sony was not too bright. Anyway, I am still a fan, still get teary-eyed when I play "One More Try" but "Older" is just dreadful. - NR
Marylin - 17/5/96
Like a lot of people, I was expecting what I heard when I bought Older. But unlike many, I *loved* what I heard. I don't understand why everyone's saying it isn't like Faith or LWP.. why on earth should it be? Don't you think George would have wanted to make something different? If it was like he's previous two solo albums everyone would have said, "oh, it's the same thing again!". We should be congratulating him for going out on a limb like this -- not many other artists risk it. And I'm not worried that he doesn't "belt out" his voice on this album. I think it will be a different story in concert when he'll be forced to scream out the lyrics because of the hysterical fans (ie. us).
The songs that really make an impact on me are: Jesus, Older, Move On, To Be Forgiven, You Have Been Loved and Star People. The lyrics are superb on the entire album, but I think the one song that is overlooked is Free. It has to be one of the greatest instrumentals written! The arrangement is absolutely fantastic and the ending "feels good, to be free" is a the best way to make a statement on the Sony fiasco.
And I think it also makes a comment on the music... he's free to make the jazzy, soul, blues sound now which would have been impossible with Sony (just look at the way they dumped LWP). It's another side of George we're listening to and I hope he sticks with it. Rating - 9.5 zts1 - 17/5/96
What a beautiful piece of work. I am so thankful that one of my favourite artist is making music that is not only so artfully arranged but so very interesting to listen to. Finally, someone is making music
that has appeal to adults in such an intelligent and sexy way. Such beautiful rhythms and lyrics that read like poetry. Thank you, Mr. Michael...the wait was well worth it! - Rating 10+
Love, Denise - 17/5/96
What can I say. George, once again has completely outdone himself. Is the man a genius or a master creator or just the best songwriter/artist/vocalist around or what? In truth, his latest album confirms that he is a sublime combination of all these descriptions and even much more. I'm quite disgusted with some of the reviews I've read here in England in music magazines suggesting that he hasn't evolved much
and that his music lacks a degree of zest that he used to demonstrate and so on. Most of these so-called reviewers from their analyses of the album's tracks only succeed in demonstrating what very little they know about George Michael and where he is currently on emotional, spiritual, intellectual, and creative levels. In fact, it seems to me that many people are pining for George to express himself musically the way they want rather than how he wants. As far as Older is concerned, George is exactly where he wants to be. Furthermore, the scope and range of the album is tremendous in terms of his vocals and musical sounds and influences he draws upon. We are seeing George reach an exciting new high in his creativity. His sincerety is real and indisputable. Each track in one way or another comes completely from his heart.
It is difficult for me to state a favourite They are all so excellent. Also, the persistent jazzy feel to the album is a joy to the ears. As I type this I'm humming 'Move On' as it reverberates through my mind. What a classic, but then so are all the other songs. This album gets a very emphatic 11/10 from me(or 10/10 if we have to be technical). Go out there and celebrate George Michael listerners. We are entering yet another new era of George Michael greatness.
Cheers, John-Paul. - 17/5/96
Oh, what can I say? The Los Angeles Times printed a long review on the album. At one point they say, "George sings, 'Maybe the child in me will just let me go', let's hope so, 'cause at this rate, the boy is never going to dance again." I couldn't agree more. Although I enjoyed most of the tracks on the album...if not all of them...this is by far George's weakest album. The old electricity that he had is gone, and though the songs are craftfully arranged and beautifully written, there's no soul behind them. Far too many songs are concentrated around a slow rhythmic trill of half steps...G sharp to A for instance...back and forth. The Master of Melody, as I still believe George is, was taking a break. I pray that his next album will show us some more of the tallented creativity that we all love from George.
Of the tracks that have not yet been released as singles, "Move On" and "It Doesn't Really Matter" are probably the strongest. "Spinning the Wheel" is a fantastic song with a poor arrangement. Ah, but you can't win them all. What ever happened to the days of "Kissing a Fool", "Praying for Time", "Something to Save" and "One More Try"? Every good artist puts out a less-than fantastic album every now and then...I just wish George could have done it six years ago, so we could have a better album now. Still, the album is craftfully arranged, and I rate it at a 7...all his other albums are all 10's.
George, as a fan and fellow songwriter, you have had the most influence on my writing. I miss you.
Josh (still waiting for that day) - 15/5/96
INCREDIBLE!!! When I first bought the album on Tuesday, I had trouble listening to it because I was at work, but I think that now I have
heard the album about 5 times through and it gets better every time I
hear it. I keep reading reviews of him brooding and what not.
RUBBISH!!! He lets his vocal heard on 'Older' and 'Fastlove' and I
think that 'Move On' is just awesome. It show how much George has
grown into other areas of songwriting. That song reminds me of Harry
Connick Jr and it is just great to hear GM crooning it instead.
'Star People' has got an awesome groove. The album just glides along
from beginning to end. My rating is a 9.5, Hey I am biased so what!!!
Hopefully George tours for this album.
Angelo - 15/5/96
I'm impressed with the diversity and how he some how makes every album unique. I wish there were more vocals. Rating 10.
Gregory - 15/5/96
Wow.. This album has surprised me. I'd be lying if I said I wasn't
expecting more. This is a good album, right up there with LWP, but it's
too downbeat to truly get into. "Fastlove" and "Star People" are great,
up tempo songs, but that's where it ends. I also enjoyed "Spinning The
Wheel", "It Doesn't Really Matter", and "Move On". It's good to see
George back. I hope Fastlove hits the top of the charts, along with a
few of his other singles. I couldn't get into "You Have Been Loved",
"To Be Forgiven", and "Older" yet, but that may change. I feel George
is trying to settle down too soon in his career.
Here's wishing George would go back to his "Faith" days. When George made "Faith", there was no better artist. I look forward to more uptempo work from George Michael in the future. RATING: 7.5
faustic - 15/5/96
6 years in the making and this is what GM comes up with? I was
expecting a mature LP, but this is too heavy. Lighten up George.
Skip the jazzy stuff. Best of the rest:"The Strangest Thing", "Fast
Love", "Star People", "Jesus To A Child". My rating 5.5
Cody - 15/5/96
Finally, the album is out. Released today (May 15) in toronto Canada, I
bought it as soon as it became available. At any rate, I still long for
the dance pop he used to do as wham or with the faith album. Album has
some pretty good tracks, and upon subsequent listenings , you tend to
find more to like.Jesus to a child, Older, Spinning the wheel, The strangest thing, Move on, and You have been loved are all good songs, but the best of the album is Fastlove. I tend to like his fast and upbeat songs best. - NR
Wow...I just finished listening to the album for the first time. I'm not sure how I feel about it except, of course, relieved to finally have some new George to listen to. I don't want to judge so soon, but I must
say he has definitely matured a great deal as a songwriter. I really enjoyed the soulful and jazzy sound of the slower tracks. It's nice to hear something so different at a time when most songs sound alike. Way
to go George!!! Thanks again for sharing your talent! - NR
Shannon - 15/5/96
Got my copy of "Older" this afternoon & it sounds fantastic! I am really pleased! It was such a bummer to wait so long for it, though it sounds well worth the wait! I bet you're getting tons of happy postings about the release of the new album, eh? Well, add mine to the bunch! :) - NR
Kimberliegh - 15/5/96
Older will surely grow on me, but I find "Star People" to be the best piece aside from "FastLove"-- I think the message within it (a lash against those who are slaves within the entertainment world and take it-- as many falsely tried to accuse GM of doing) has much to do with the presentation. It is the only song that grabs for attention and does it well. Too bad it will likely never be popularly known as it doesn't bode well for an industry to promote a song that spites itself. All in all, I am a little disappointed that Older doesn't lighten up more and allow the new more "free" GM to rejoice in his triumphs and
instead wallows in the past. I can't wait for more... - NR
I was quite disappointed at first with the Brazilian sound to some of the songs. However, songs like You Have Been Loved, Older, To Be Forgiven, Jesus To a Child & Fastlove are the highlight of the album I'd say. After a few times, this album can be quite ADDICTIVE as any other GM albumhas been, I must say! Undeniably the best new album I've ever bought for a long time. :-). The last decent album I heard was Queen's Made In Heaven from last year. My favourite song from this album is You Have Benn Love. Such tenderness! Hope it's gonna be a single. Rating : 9.5
AC - 15/5/96 Hi, first off let me say this is developing into a very nice page. Anyways, my thoughts on Older. What's happened to George?!! Could he make this one any more depressing? You'd think the guy mopes around all day thinking of past failures. What happened to the topics on Faith or the (better done) personal stuff on LWP? I think we are not seeing his full potential when he stifles his fun and crazy side. The closest glimpse we have of this is in Fastlove and Star People. I thought his influences were Stevie Wonder and Aretha Franklin, not Morrisey or the Cure. I liked how he tried to infuse some hip hop and house beats, but it felt oddly out of place. I feel he thinks that sad songs and melodies = serious and better songwriter. Overall rating:6.5
pham - 15/5/96
The first time I heard the album, I thought it would bomb. I thought the song, Older,
was really dull. The second time I heard it, I thought it was beautifully produced and
written, especially the song, OLDER. Anyways, the more you listen to the album, the
more it grows on you. The album is truly one of his best. For those who have not yet purchased it,
I strongly recommend you to get it and listen to "Jesus to a Child,""Fastlove,""Older,""Move On."
"Star People,"and "It Doesn't Really Matter." I give the album is 9 out of 10.
Great site! I found it a couple of weeks ago when I did a YAHOO search for George Michael. I've been anxiously awaiting the release of his new album. Every time I checked the record store the release date was different. I was going crazy with anticipation! It became available today in the U.S. and I immediately picked up a copy at the music store. Since I am at work, I haven't had a chance to listen to it closely. What I have heard, I love! Of course, I love anything that George does. He is incredibly talented and I find his soulful voice very soothing! I'm anxious to find out anything you know about an upcoming tour!? The wait is over!!! - NR
Critch - 15/5/96
I think GM is the only artist that can actually compose lyrics which are deep and music which is downbeat and still become recognized as a thinker not just a singer. Although before I bought
the CD, I anticipated hearing more up tempo music to uplift me and revive my spirits. Now
after listening to the CD numerous a times,I realized GM's synic side is also appealing and true. Music that shows that life is not perfect and people are cruel usually turns people away; nonetheless, songs like "The Strangest Thing" which speaks of the blindness and passion a lover has for his only love is what most people deal with in a relationship that is new or fading away. But this album proves that change can be done to reverse the agony and bitterness of life. For example, the lyrics "Move On" prove a memory of pain can be forgotten. I still wish "Free" would have lyrics to complement the fast dance and lively rhythm. I hope the album climbs the charts - because GM you deserve it. I rate this album a 9.75
Maha - 15/5/96
Having heard "Older" over & over again, I would tend to agree that it is a
pretty good album. But let's not elevate GM to God status. There are
still some things that are not "perfect" yet. GM still tend to write
songs on the keyboards that have similar patterns and chords and
percussions. The only one track that stands out as being absolutely
original is the title track "Older". I still think that it is at its best
in its instrumental state. The keyboards on the other songs still sound
vaguely familiar, harking back to "Blue", "One More Try" etc. Although
this is not basically a fault, I can't help but prefer GM in his acoustic
best in Listen Without Prejudice. Songs like Something to Save,
Praying for Time, Waiting for that Day and Waiting (Reprise) are
songs that almost never come by again. "Older" is still good, but I am
still very picky and sensitive, so I still think a lot of the structure of
the songs in Older are repetitive. But then again, it's only the
structure. The completed songs are quite different from each other and
each stand out in its own right. Overall, I'll give the Older an 8.5, but
definitely in contention for album of the year, in my books at least.
Strongly recommended songs: Older, Move on, Spinning the wheel & You have been loved.
Good Work GM.
alel - 14/5/96
Its worth the 6 years wait. "Older", the album cuts through. it has its own plane. a good mix of jazz rhythm, black blues and the sensitivity of the songs. its love at first... encounter. - NR
Leng - 13/5/96
The new George Michael album "Older" was released in Denmark on
Friday 10th May. I was there ten minutes before the shop opened
and have been in heaven ever since. This is great!! Absolutely
amazing that any songwriter/performer can actually make anything
this good in 1996! Wow.
Anyway, the record is presenting a lot older and more mature George than ever before. Only the two singles "Like Jesus To A Child" and "Fastlove" bears resemblance to the former George. But Hey, thatīs just great. I like it really. I have been a fan since the early Wham days and have so to speak grown Older along with George (actually we are at the same age) and feel and think very often the way he does. So at last - George is away from the image as a teen-idol. I am pleased to say!
Just thought I`ll let you know about the early release.
Back to my CD..... - NR
Bo - 12/5/96
I bought Older yesterday and must say that I was quite disapointed at first, expecting something of "Listen"
caliber. It is admittedly a downbeat album, with the exception of Fast Love and Star People. Still the highlights like Move On, It Doesn't Really Matter elevate the album as one the best albums of the year I suppose. I'm sure it will make to the nominees list for the Grammys next year.- NR
ZIBI - 12/5/96
The more I listen to this album, the more I like it. Older is a set of
beautifully crafted songs that are downright pleasant to listen to. I truly believe
several of the tracks, particularly "Older" and "The Strangest Thing", are the best
songs he's ever written. The pensive lyrics and the lush vocals make this
album a journey through heaven. He has definitely affirmed his place as the
greatest singer/songwriter alive. Rating: 9.5
Alan - 12/5/96
I have waited 5 years for the new album to appear. It was worth waiting
for. George Micheal is one of the few artists that can make a powerfull combination of words and music. This man understands... Rating : 10
Folkert - 11/5/96
I was lucky enough today to hear Mr. Michael's new album "OLDER" and I sat in rapture, utterly speechless through all the tracks. GM is definetally back, and older. You can just sit back, listen, and feel how much he has grown, and how much I have grown with him since his Wham! days.
I anyway fell in love with the lulling lyrics and melody of Jesus to a Child, and the upbeat tempo of Fastlove brought me to my feet to dance. The rest of the album is more on the Jazzy side. Mellow melodies with very real lyrics that touch everyone and everything. There should not be a person out there
who does not have at least some affinity with the words that GM so beautifully expresses.
All GM fans will love this album. It is bound to be a classic instantly!
Enjoy it on the 14th of May........ - NR
Irith (aka Blondy1669@ aol.com) - 11/5/96
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It has been a long time between drinks for the stubbled one. Three and a half years ti be exact. Now he is no longer a "professional slave", George has been free to create without the messiness of producing videos, doing promotional work or dealing with the great unwashed masses. The thing is, his music really does speak for itself. Comprised mainly of thoughtful, introspective ballads, it's a clear departure from his dance-pop days of I Want Your Sex and Too Funky. Very smooth, with a touch of gospel. It's not bad at all. 8/10
The Sun Herald - Sydney 26/5/96 p 26
Australia's Hottest New Album : If you've already heard George Michael's new singles Fastlove and Jesus To A Child, you'll have some idea about the buzz surrounding the release of his new album Older - the fastest-selling album in Virgin's History
Written, arranged and produced by Michael, it's described as a mix of "tracks with a smoky, late-night feel interspersed with more breezy pop tunes". Both Fastlove and Jesus To A Child have debuted at No 1 on the NSW ARIA chart and HMV Mid City reported the first-day sales of Older to be the biggest ever, outselling even Michael Jackson's History, Older too went straight to No 1 and after the first 10 days, platinum.
In 14 years, the British pop star has sold 60 million records worldwide, notched up six US No 1 singles, nine British No 1 singles and five No. 1 albums.
"MICHAEL MOVES THE WORLD: George Michael embraces Virgin Music Group Worldwide executive VP Nancy Berry and chairman/CEO Ken Berry at the launch party for his new album, "Older", at London's Hamilton Gallery. The album, released on Virgin Records, everywhere but in North America, where it is on DreamWorks, quickly reached #1 in 15 countries.
In the U.S., the album has already achieved gold certification. The second single from the set, "Fastlove", is #8 on the Hot 100 Singles chart."
Canny...George Michael: more thoroughbred than clothes horse.
"Feels good to be free..." Only in the dying seconds, with these whispered words ending an otherwise instumental track, does George Michael allude to the issue that has stopped him from releasing a new album for six years. He lost his court case against Sony, but he made his point. He was allowed to make a new deal with another company. But the biggest surprise about Older - in spite of its maturity-flaunting side - is how little he has moved on. Whatever Michael has been through in this decade, it hasn't revolutionized his music. It's as if he cannot begin again without remiding us of what he was before.
Take the second song, his current single Fastlove. A truly slick, efficient piece of chart-friendly pop-funk, it's exactly the kind of future track you would have predicted from him back in the the early Wham! days. He's the Young Gun gone for it, with the cash to cruise Outer London wine bars: "My friends got their ladies, they all have babies, I just wanna have some fun. Why don't we make a little room in my BMW?" Laced with '70s disco references, it's a perfect anthem for ageing suburban funkateers. Play it loud and watch your socks turn white.
Everywhere we are in the key of mellow. There are late night saxophones, dreamy last-dance shuffles and deep, deep shades of blue. In the time that has elapsed since Michael's last album (LWP, Vol one), gangsta rappers have rapped, Kurt Cobain has arrived and left again, and Britpop may never have happened at all. Older is in most respects a thoroughly late '80s album: meticulously crafted, up-market sophisto-soul. By his old standards, a lot of its tracks have frankly limited karaoke potential. But that is to be expected. He is, after all, the man who spent three years and several million pounds fighting for the right to be uncommercial when he damn well felt like it.
Still, it repays repeated listening. Older is a rather subtle piece of work. Spinning the Wheel, The Strangest Thing and To Be Forgiven are songs that do little to advance George Michael's claim to be an adventurous spirit - they are, in a way, very conservative efforts - but they are richly satisfying tracks within their own realm. Maybe Michael really does understand his audience much better than those record company marketing types he locked horns with in the High Court. Older lacks the hairy-chested sensuality of his solo breakthrough, Faith, but he knows he can't be playing the stubbly love god forever. Fastlove may be a canny choice of single but it's not a typical Older track by any means.
Ultimately, Older is not as interesting as its predecessor, LWP, which was a painfully self-conscious record but also a painfully honest one. Infact, it has been all-too-common to mock George Michael for the transparent way that he pleads to be taken seriously. As the recording of this long-awaited follow-up crawled along through the winter months of late 1995 and early this year, the question that hovered over Michael's music was whether he would confuse credibility with solemnity. The point of having pop stars is to cheer us up - even the serious "mature" pop stars. Their music may be their life-blood, but, for the rest of us, it's just the froth on life's cappuccino.
Older, as it turns out, is mostly happy just to get on with the job. There is even a song, Star People, attacking the vanity of celebrities who think their personal pain gives them a claim on our attentions. "Talk about your teacher, the bully boy who beat you, talk about the people who have paid for that new sports car." And then: " I do not count myself among you," he declares, rather smugly, "I can't help but hope there's a difference between you and me."
It's a fair point but the old black pot-and-kettle question comes to mind on the opening track here, namely the comeback single, Jesus to a Child. The singer is notoriously coy about his private life, yet he presents here an open rquiem to a dead friend. As with other tracks on Older, the tune is so subdued you either find the restraint to be beguilling or insipid. But the lyric is definitely powerful and you'd be more surprised to learn that it wasn't a true story. It's reportedly about Michael's real-life pal Anselmo Feleppa, a young Brazillian man who died in 1993, and it has a fine sincerity about it ("And the love we would have made, I'll make it for two...") that elevates it above the maudin and the prurient.
Michael appears to return to this theme near Older's end. The song is called You Have Been Loved and it is the saddest, loveliest thing he has yet written. Again he is dealing with bereavement. Across a melancholy, drifing tune, he murmurs a tale of himself and a mother who are brought together by someone's death - that is of his friend, her son. The elegiac note is delicately sustained; the sorrowful complexities of the scenario are sketched with skillful sensitivity. At several points he compares his own feeling of loss with what he imagines the mother ot be experiencing - "I've no daughters, I've no sons. Guess I'm the only one living my life..." The song attempts to draw what strength it can from a memory of the loved one's existence. 'Take care, my love, he said. Don't think that God is dead. You have been loved..."If the song doesn't touch you at some level, you have a heart of polystyrene.
Few of the other tracks can hope to make a direct emotional connection of that sort. Without a vivid subject to write around - even the subject of his own career, which inspired a few of the great songs on LWP - George MIchael can sound rather aimless. There is a contrived track here, called Move On, with the sounds of a supper-club audience dubbed on it, chattering, eating, applauding politely. Michael applies a gentle, jazz swing that is pleasant enough, but the dickie-bow-loosening chorus ("Move on, hold it together, get yourself where you wanna be") is so ordinary that you'll be distracted by the night-club diners in the background, and straind to catch their converstation instead.
For a man who fought so long and hard for his artistic freedom, George Michael is remarkably cautions about how he uses it. There are no overtly commercial tracks on this album, except perhaps Fastlove, but there is nothing that is widly experimental either. He is clearly keen to write songs with immense personal significance for him, but the tone is never self-absorbed. Earnest as he is, he's always belonged to show business, not rock'n'roll - and he is not about to alienate the people who have put him where he is. IF he really does pine to be accepted by the rock crowd, he shows no sign of it here. This is George Michael on his own territory, with an album that will suit his old fan-base, without sacrificing any of the integrity that is so precious to him.
Those who think he's just a lightweight, wearing clothes that cost too much, will find nothing here that is likely to upset their opinions. He resolutely remains in Anglo-soul mode, and some people just don't hear anything good in that stuff. But if you recognise a rare talent for using truth and beauty in mainstream pop music, then George Michael is still your man. He likes to adverstise that he has grwons older, but at 32 he ought to have many more years ahead of him. Time enough to turn a different corner maybe. But not yet." 4 stars out of 5 (Excellent. Definitely worth investigation)
Paul Du Noyer, Q, June 1996, p. 121
"The biggest music news from England over the past couple of months has been the release of the new album by George Michael, his first in six years and the first since he signed to DreamWorks SKG (for North America) and Virgin (for the rest of the world). He did not exactly have a dream start at DreamWorks: in Canada he has so far peaked at five, while in the US his best position has been six. He has done better in the rest of the world, where album sales are estimated at 3M. In his home country he accomplished his third consecutive number one album debut, while both of the singles Jesus To A Child and FastLove also entered in pole position. Older also went to number one in Australia, Chile, Denmark, France, Greece, Hungary, Holland, Iceland, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Spain, and Sweden."
"...The fact of the matter is that by his own extraordinary standards, "Older" is, internationally, the fastest-selling album George Michael has ever released. Dreamworks/Virgin will verify we are rapidly closing on 4 million copies worldwide after just threee weeks in the marketplace... The album has already picked 25 gold/platinium awards, is currently #1 on the combined Music & Media European chart, and is #1 in Australia and New Zealand and on Japan's international chart."
SERIOUS GEORGE IS BACK: AFTER BATTLING SONY, MICHAEL GROWS UP WITH "OLDER". DOES HE STILL HAVE THE NERVE TO BE SILLY?
No one in the world could ever take George Michael as seriously as George Michael. So why bother trying? He was gloriously silly back in the Wham! days, hopping around his videos in teensy, tight shorts with his Bobbsey Twins singing partner, Andrew Ridgley. He was silly still in the megaplatinium "Faith" days, wiggling his butt on MTV, acting so tough in that leather jacket when we knew he was just a big pop softie. His silliness became acute around the time of his high-minded 1990 album, "Listen Without
Prejudice", when he burned his leather jacket in the "Freedom 90" video and hired a bunch of cover girls to lip-sync his words. The result was a fabolous piece of pop trashology, and an enormously watchable video. But was it a statement? Not really, unless you call ushering in the Age of Supermodels a real contribution to society. Detroit News - May 12 1996
But all that was just a warm-up. In 1992 Michael sued to end his contract with Sony, alledging that they treated him him less like an artist than a piece of software. The nerve of them! Michael lost the suit, but last year DreamWorks SKG and Virgin shelled out a reported $52 million for thepriviledge of buying out his contract and releasing his next two albums. So a lot is riding on Michael's new opus. The seriousness/ silliness quotient has become especially crucial. And a question hangs in the balance. Was Michael's fight with Sony a heroic battle for artist's rights? Or was it just one more melodrama in a career that's reached soap operatic proportions?
Well, the answer is: both. On "Older", released this week, Michael hits the balance perfectly, just as he always has. It's gorgeous and romantic, ambitious and revelatory, featherlight and exquisitely listenable. Michael mixes acoustic quitars and synthesizers, high-tech drum tracks and old-school solos; he produced, wrte, arranged and mostly played everything himself. The album is dedicated to Antonio Carlos Jobim, and songs like "Move On" and "It Doesnt Really Matter" have the breezy, sultry sadness of Jobim's great '60s collaborations wit Frank Sinatra. Elsewhere Michael updates crooners like Johnny Mathis and Nat King Cole: his voice glides with easy collaboration through heartachy ballads, flitting to falsetto when the sentiment moves on. The only mistake is "Star People", a snobbish dismissal of a peer group Michael doesnt deserve to distance himself from. Even "Free", the album's coda and a direct swipe to "Sony" (headphones labeled FONY were edited out of his new video, "FastLove"), comes off as vintage Michael. "Feels god to be free", he whispers with frivolous delight. And we know exactly what he means. Michael's freedom is our freedom. It is his gift to his audience. He takes himself seriously, so we dont have to.
Karen Schoemer, NEWSWEEK, May 20, 1996, p.79
Detroit News - May 12 1996
If the mood on George Michael's new album weren't so heavy, the disc might
just float away. Like the smooth Brit vocalist's previous studio effort- the
1990's Listen without Prejudice, Vol.1, the self-produced "Older" is golden
pop- subtly soulful and self-consciously smart. But something is missing-the
spunk. Thanks to airy, shuffling arrangements and wide, hushed synthesizers,
ears will wander as Michael drifts through a series of brooding tracks. When
things do get moving- on the hopping new single "FastLove", for instance, -
Michael wields a warm, tugging sensuality. But lovely and delicate, as
Michael can croon, too often the restraint is too much. Try not to sneeze.
Comments on the delays
I do find it frustrating that the album has been delayed so long. When I was
in London last week, I rang up George's management office. I was told that
the album was to be released mid May. No explanation was given. I hope that
it will be relaesed by then and not pushed back further. If you can get
someone at Dreamworks to explain what's going on it would be much
appreciated. Keep up the good work.
I, too would like to know the reasons behind the continual delays of
George Michael's album "Older." It is very frustrating to have to wait
so long for a new album and then be teased with false release dates.
Please hurry it up! Will George be on tour in the U.S.A.? Will it
be heavily promoted? Would someone at Dreamworks PLEASE comment???? We
can't buy it unless you SELL IT!
I just wanted to give George a few words of encouragement since he
probably feels PRESSURED to entertain us.
Not everyone is pissed off about the delay(s). I'm glad you have decided to take some time an make sure you are happy with your end result. You should be as exicted as your fans are about the release. And if your not, I'll wait.
You know you could make "Happy Birthday" a number one song with that terrific voice.
Don't get me wrong, I'm just as anxious as everybody else, but I understand that there are many things involved in planning an album release even after the songs have been recorded.
I love "Jesus To A Child" and the instrumental to "Older." I know the
local radio stations have just started to play "FastLove." But I haven't
heard the whole song through yet. CAN'T WAIT.
We have all waited for a new George Michael release, but I think that any
delay would have surely been for the best of the NEW ALBUM, so lets all
support YOG now because what is coming on 15 May is surely ausome.
Still one week left, so all GM fans get ready.......
Haitham - 9/5/96
I recently went to a George Michael Album listening party and I had a chance to talk to and executive from Geffen Records and he said the reason why the album is being delayed is because George Michael wanted to remix the whole entire album. He said it would have been out in February, but GM didn't like how the album turned out. I got a chance to listen to the whole entire album and it is great. There is a song called "STAR PEOPLE" on the album and it is one the best songs I have ever heard.
Everyone who was at the party was asking why this song wasn't the first single out. The song is very catchy and it has an awesome, awesome, beat. It's got the kind of beat that will make you dance if you don't even want to. It is also the kind of beat that you could listen to if you were in the relaxing mood.
REZA - 26/4/96
There seems to be some frustration as we wait for "Older." it's been some time since George has released a full length album - 6 years I believe! part of the reason was the legal battle with Sony. But please realize that George is very passionate about his music and will not release the album until it is ready. We should respect that. It is certainly better that an artist releases an album filled with songs that are done in a manner he finds proper than to rush something out. Take for example Pearl Jam's Vitology CD - much of what was on there was crap. George seems to be more of a perfectionist, and I admire that.
Yash - 26/4/96
I always think that half the fun of good things is the excitement
while you're waiting for that good thing to come. If there's one good
example, it would be George's next album.
Of course the delays are annoying, but as with anything, I feel that good
things come to those who wait. Georgious is an artist, and being an
actor, I know that art can only be rushed very carefully. In his
situation, he doesn't have a deadline as to when he has to perform (yet)
with no concert dates, etc. I envy him this because I DO have to worry
about such deadlines because a play, or movie has specific dates that it
is set to run, and the people involved must be able to perform at those times.
However, he should be careful setting dates, and then pushing them back
as he (michael)risks (pardon my french) pissing people off, and his fans
make him his money, and the less fans, the less money.
Personally I wouldn't stop listening to his music for that reason. He is a highly talented writer, musical director, and arranger. Not to mention that he has in my opinion the best (male) voice in popular music today! So George, I say take your time!! Because I know that whenever it comes out (and I've been waiting since May 15, 1991--when I was told that Listen Without Prejudice Vol. II was originally set to release--and I'm still waiting for that day when Older is released!! Whatever, and whenever you release I will listen whole-heartedly, and without prejudice!!
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