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Cherry Pop

Title - 'Heart First: Deluxe Edition' [2CD]
Artist - Hazell Dean

For those not in the know, Hazell Dean is an English dance-pop singer, who achieved her biggest success in the 1980s as a leading Hi-NRG artist.

Indeed, she is best known for the top ten hits in the United Kingdom 'Searchin' (I Gotta Find a Man)', 'Whatever I Do (Wherever I Go)' and 'Who's Leaving Who,' and has also worked as a songwriter and producer.

Furthermore, this doyenne of the dance floor for over four decades is also the pivotal artist who gave Stock Aitken Waterman (SAW) their first Top Ten smash with the cutting-edge Hi-NRG sound of the aforementioned ‘Whatever I Do (Wherever I Go)’ – thereby paving the way for their hits with Dead Or Alive, Bananarama, Kylie and countless others.

Cherry Pop / Chery Red Records (UK) is about to release a brand new double CD Deluxe Edition of Heart First, the classic 1984 debut album from perennial pop icon and dance floor diva, Hazell Dean.

This first album project for legendary production and songwriting powerhouse Stock Aitken Waterman, Heart First features the classic hits ‘Whatever I Do (Wherever I Go)’ (UK #4), ‘Back in My Arms (Once Again)’ and ‘No Fool (For Love)’ (both UK #41) alongside the previous signature smash ‘Searchin’’ (UK #6), a collaboration with another mainstay of the Hi-NRG scene, Ian Anthony Stephens.

Given a sparkling new remaster from the original analogue tapes, this definitive edition of the album also features extensive bonus material.

Included here is a comprehensive collection of sought-after full-length mixes of all the singles, several of them long out-of-print or previously unissued on CD.

Indeed, and at Hazell’s own request, the standout title track 'Heart First' has been remixed for 2020 by acclaimed producer Matt Pop. Using the original 1984 multi track parts, this fabulous new version of a long-time fan favorite is made available exclusively on this release.

Hazell’s very first Top 75 success came in early 1984 with the double A-side single release of her sterling dance floor interpretation of the Barbra Streisand classic ‘Evergreen’, together with one of her own compositions, ‘Jealous Love’ (of which both 7” and extended 12” versions of each track feature here).

Hazell’s self-penned 1984 Song for Europe entry ‘Stay in My Life’ (intended for single release, but eclipsed by the runaway success and eventual reissue of ‘Searchin’’) is also included, alongside the B-sides ‘Young Boy In The City’ and ‘Take Me Home’.

CD 1:
1. 'Back in My Arms (Once Again)'
2. 'Searchin''
3. 'Break the Rules'
4. 'Whatever I Do (Wherever I Go)'
5. 'You're Too Good to Be True'
6. 'Back in My Arms (Once Again)' [Reprise]
7. 'Heart First'
8. 'No Fool (For Love)'
9. 'Harmony'
10. 'Devil in You'
11. 'Everything I Need'
12. 'Evergreen'
13. 'Jealous Love'
14. 'Stay in My Life'
15. 'Young Boy in the City'
16. 'Take Me Home'
17. 'No Fool (For Love)' [7" Mix]
18. 'You're Too Good to Be True' [Extra Beat Boys Remix]
19. 'Searchin'' [12" Version]
20. 'Evergreen' [Extended Version]

In truth, this entire album (let alone the second disc of remixes and such) perfectly reflects the true quality of the year 1984 in the UK dance scene.

As all us British fans who enjoyed the '80s for all they were worth know all too well, all SAW tracks are thumping dance tunes and this collection does not disappoint.

I mean, from the off we get the fantastic quartet of 'Back in My Arms (Once Again),' 'Searchin' (I Gotta Find a Man),' 'Break the Rules' and the always-fantastic to hear 'Whatever I Do (Wherever I Go),' which are all, and still today, some of the best examples of '80s Hi-NRG pop.

Sure Hazell hit it big with the club hit 'Searchin'' but other songs sparkle here like the anthemic 'Whatever I Do (Wherever I Go),' the title track (with a great chorus) 'Heart First,' and the beautiful 'Harmony' (with its thoughtful lyrics and soaring vocals).

Straight down the line the entire original album, inclusive of the reworked for 2020 title track, means that '80s Hi-NRG dance music is Back - and well worth revisiting!

CD 2:
1. 'Heart First' [Matt Pop Club Mix]
2. 'Whatever I Do (Wherever I Go)' [Dance Mix]
3. 'Back in My Arms (Once Again)' [Dance Mix]
4. 'No Fool (For Love)' [Dance Version]
5. 'Jealous Love' [Extended Version]
6. 'Searchin'' [Megamix]
7. 'Whatever I Do (Wherever I Go)' [Extended Remix]
8. 'No Fool (For Love)' [The Murray Mix]
9. 'Searchin'' [Instrumental]
10. 'No Fool (For Love)' [Part Two Instrumental]
11. 'Whatever I Do (Wherever I Go)' [Dub Mix]
12. 'No Fool (For Love)' [Dubajoker Mix]

Quite a lot of nice extended and remixed gems to be found here on the second disc, such as the 12" mix of 'Whatever I Do' (which over 8 minutes long and is an alternate mix), as compared to the original 12" single that runs close to 7 minutes (which can be found on her Greatest Hits CD).

One of the 12" versions of 'No Fool (For Love)' on here is the Dubajoker Mix), which also happens to be on the Greatest Hits CD, but it's still a great way to end the musical journey, that's for sure.

Sadly though, don't expect to find any lost Stock Aitken Waterman gems on here re: the original 7" single B-sides because, and in total honesty, none of them ever had the "classic" SAW sound anyway!

This Deluxe Edition also boasts a expanded 20-page booklet including an brand new track-by-track commentary from Hazell, an illustrated discography, additional photos and lyrics.

Official 2CD Purchase Link

Hazell Dean @ Facebook