Steps are C-list on BBC Radio 1
Steps have made it on to the BBC Radio 1 playlist, but only onto their ‘C’ playlist. I remember that After The Love Has Gone made it onto their ‘B’ list but I have no idea if they have ever made the Radio 1 ‘A’ list.
Steps will appear on SMTV Live’s 100th Show on 22 July
Here’s a review of the Mardi Gras festival which took place last weekend from Dotmusic:
“When the line up for this festival was announced the letters pages of the gay press were filled with letters decrying the predictability of it all. Clapped out divas desperate to flog their non starter albums and bubblegum pop from the bottom of the barrel. You can’t squeeze a Boots shop girl into a silver frock and expect gay men to adopt her as an instant icon. Although it does seem to have worked for Steps. It would be nice to see a bit of originality next year. If we really want to celebrate queerness it would be worth catering for the majority who don’t class Abba as the pinnacle of twentieth century cultural achievement.
It starts, horribly enough, with a Eurovision section and Buck’s Fizz – who the organisers seem to have had exhumed for the occasion – and the aforementioned Nicki French. Nicki seems like a very nice woman, and would make an ideal aunt, but sad to report that today she looks resolutely glamourless in her Geri-like Union Jack dress. She lunges around the stage for a while and sings some songs and then she is gone. Nobody notices.
Lolly is next and Lolly does not tolerate being ignored. She shrieks with joy at being allowed up on the stage, and my glass would have shattered if it had not been plastic. Then she begins the bouncing. Lolly has elevated the bounce to an astonishing athletic feat of endurance. She bounces through her cover version of eighties horror-hit ‘Hey Mickey’. She bounces while she talks afterwards. She bounces through her version of ‘Girls Just Wanna Have Fun.’
But hooray! the rain lets up quite soon, which means I don’t have to miss the schmaltz overdose of Martine McCutcheon. Martine has a superb voice and is slickly professional. She thanks the crowd quietly and ploughs on with her frighteningly overblown power ballads. The crowd seems to love her, but there are a few hopeful glances at the sky.
Thank God for All Saints, who are fast shaping up to be the greatest pop band on the planet, nearly the equal of the Spice Girls in their glorious heyday. It’s impossible to overstate how good All Saints seem in this environment. In a sea of tack, their quality shines through. Looking effortlessly cool, they saunter around the stage and treat the crowd like adults. And cynics should note how well the Saints sing live. A sizzling version of ‘Lady Marmalade’ gets the crowd bouncing, and is followed by a new, sleek pop number called ‘No More Tequila’. It has ‘hit’ tattooed across its forehead. And then they do ‘Pure Shores’, still the single of the year.
Stephen Gately was a two minute hero when he came out last year, and we still applaud his bravery and his honesty in dealing with the gutter press. He has probably helped millions of gay teenagers salvage some pride and hope from their miserable childhoods. Sadly, for his crimes against music, he must now die. No-one is quite sure who the odd looking creature in the baseball cap is. If he is hoping his songs will speak for him, he should try writing some new ones. This music is remarkably, resoundingly, astoundingly dull.
Then Steps come to the rescue. The second that the first note of ‘Deeper Shade Of Blue’ is struck the crowd goes berserk. Gay men pour out of the dance tents and head shrieking for the main stage. I experience a profound shame. Steps are unadulterated evil and no-one seems to realise. Oh God! The crowd knows all the words. Oh Lord! And the dance moves.
Back in time for the glorious Five, who are the anti-Steps. Where Steps are hideously cheerful, Five are boisterous. Where Steps are soul destroying, Five are life affirming. Where Steps strain for credibility, Five get on with the fun job of being pop stars. They start with ‘If Ya Getting Down’ which is deliciously filthy, and seems to unite lesbians and gay men in expressions of lust. ‘I want it now’ they sing, and so do we, so do we.” (Source: Dotmusic)
Here’s an interview with Lisa:
“Question: What is the funniest thing that happened last year?
It has to be when I asked Prince Charles to do our ‘Tragedy’ pose. It was all in the papers the next day. He’s a good sport.
Question: Whose performance did you most enjoy last year?
We are all big fans of The Corrs, so we really enjoyed their performance.
Question: Who are you looking forward to seeing perform this year?
Artful Dodger, Craig David and Christine Aguilera.
Question: What one word best describes the PITP atmosphere?
Question: Do you know which songs you’ll be performing?
‘Deeper Shade Of Blue’, ‘Summer Of Love’, and ‘Tragedy’.
Question: What will you be doing when you’re not on stage?
We’ll probably be chilling out backstage and socialising with the other artists (H will probably be eating!)
Question: Can we expect any surprises in your set?
You can expect a fantastic time, plus there might be a new dance routine for all of you to learn!
Question: What’s the best party you’ve ever been to?
Our second album launch party was great, cos all our family and friends were there. Plus it meant we had more than one album!
Question: You have toured all over the world – so far who has given you the best reception?
We love being on tour in the UK, but PITP is a massive buzz.
Question: Who keeps the peace when you have arguments on tour?
To be honest, we’re a bit boring because we don’t argue, we talk things through.
Question: You love dressing up in your videos – what is your favourite video?
‘Better The Devil’, as it was filmed during our arena tour.
Question: What’s it like playing to 100,000 people?
It’s hard to put into words, the feeling you get from performing to all those people, but it is completely awesome!
Question: What was the first concert you ever went to?
New Kids on the Block.
Question: Do you enjoy performing outdoors?
Only when its not raining!
Question: Can you give us a weather prediction?
A beautiful clear blue sky with temperatures in the high 90s (sorry that’s Hawaii)!!”
(Source: Party In The Park Website)