Oh where do you start with a band like 5ive?
Do I ridicule them first for the way they wrote their name 5ive, as if it were a personalised number plate (although they appear to have ditched this by the time today’s single came out)?
Should I scoff over the fact that for what seems to be the bulk of their career, there don’t appear to have been five members in the band?
Maybe I should laugh unsympathetically at the fact that band member Sean Conlon failed to get past the audition stage of The Voice UK in 2012?
Or perhaps guffaw at the fact that manager Satan Cowell tried to get them to record “Baby One More Time” (presumably not dressed as schoolgirls in the video), only for the writer to elect to give it to Britney Spears instead?
No, none of these will happen on my watch, for I do not come here to bury 5ive, but to praise them. For a brief period at the tail end of the 1990s, they released some bloody marvellous pop singles. No, really.
5ive were put together in 1997, having answered, along with 3000 other deluded warblers, including Russell Brand, an advert in a newspaper placed by Bob and Chris Herbert. You know, Bob and Chris, right? Sure you do. The Herbert Boys. The chaps who put the Spice Girls together? Yes, that Bob and Chris.
In 1997, Bob and Chris Herbert decided that the time was right for a new boy band to be created. 1997 was, as we all remember, those dark days when the Great Boy Band Shortage was at its very peak. Doubtless, they had noticed the hordes of miserable teenage girls, aimlessly wandering the streets, clutching their Take That dolls (except the one of Gary “Boss-Eyed” Barlow: nobody bought them), wailing inconsolably that they only had N*Sync, Let Loose, MN8, 911, E.Y.C., Code Red, Damage, No Mercy (who pleasingly had hits called “Please Don’t Go” and “Where Do You Go?”, admittedly, annoyingly, not in that order though), Another Level, All-4-One, 3T, Backstreet Boys, Boyzone, and Caught in the Act, (and probably lots more that I can’t think of…) to idolise.
Abz from 5ive was the runner up in Celebrity Big Brother 12; we were discussing this where I used to work one day, and I remembered that my former flatmate Hel had met him once, when she was working for a record label. My workmates refused to believe this, so I emailed her and asked her to confirm. She replied, confirming my CLANG! namedrop on her behalf, that he had been to the label’s recording studios, and that he was “the sweetest smelling man” she’d ever met. She had been living with me for a couple of years, mind, so the competition wasn’t exactly stiff.
But enough of these dewy-eyed nostalgic recollections of days when we were so bereft of boy bands; you need some evidence that 5ive produced some great pop records, despite the guiding hand of Satan Cowell.
Fair enough. Here’s their finest moment and first UK #1, another upbeat belch of pop positivity and goodwill. Read into that what you will about the quality of the rest of their back catalogue.
Oh dear. I seem to be having an issue adding a link to the mp3. I’ll try to get that sorted (Sorted now!); in the meantime, I’d hate you to miss out, so here’s the video instead:
More soon. Hopefully.