Let me tell you what I want, what I really really want. I really, really, really, want to talk about the Spice Girls. I’ve been on a Spice Girls kick lately, which is weird because I was not interested in the Spice Girls as a child. I’ve had many friends that were, but I was not. So a lot of this information was new to me to learn, and there were some songs I didn’t really know, so this is a learning journey for all of us!
Spice was the debut album of the all-girl group, the Spice Girls, in 1996. The group comprised 5 members, Mel B (Scary Spice), Melanie C (Sporty Spice), Victoria (Posh Spice), Geri (Ginger Spice), and Emma (Baby Spice). The group was made after an ad was placed in Style Magazine because Heart Management was looking to form a girl group. This was pretty normalized in the 90s. Most production and management companies were trying to find the next big thing with the sweeping success of boy and girl-bands.
The Spice Girls started as Touch, but the name was eventually changed before their first album release. Throughout the process, it was a bumpy journey. Not all the girls understood each other’s backgrounds, the writers and the girls didn’t always get along and their visions of what the group would be were very different. By the third session, though, the girls and the writers and producers all ended up on the same page. All the girls were involved in writing the songs, and the process of song making.
Critically, the album was a success. Most critics really enjoyed the album. Commercially, it was like Beatlemania, a UK group was taking storm everywhere. The album sold 10 million copies within the first 7 months worldwide. The album is the best-selling album by any girl group in history with 23 million copies that have sold worldwide.
The first three songs are the singles from the album and the most commercially successful songs on the album. Wannabe starts the album and is the most iconic song that the Spice Girls have. People that don’t know the Spice Girls know this song because it has been used so often. The song is great and iconic. The song shows all the girls and gives them their time to shine. This is a wonderful introduction to the group. The next song is Say You’ll Be There, another fun, upbeat song that is just a quintessential Spice Girls song. The song itself is a bit confusing, but you can’t help but get up and dance to it. The third song is 2 Become 1. I have heard this song; I forgot how explicit it actually is. I think about the boy band songs of that era and they are more discreet about things, whereas in this song, the girls literally just put it out there that they want to have sex. Talk about female empowerment! It is a fine ballad.
This is where the album takes a turn. The next song is Love Thing. I really enjoyed this song! It was a great wholesome bop that is all about love. This could have been a single as well. Then, we get to Last Time Lover. I didn’t actually realize the song started at all, or that anyone was singing. It just sounded like a lot of noise. Not a well-produced song, nor a pleasant song in general. Then we get to Mama. Believe me, I get it Mom deserves a tribute. Between the Backstreet Boys- Perfect Fan, Boyz II Men’s-Mama’s Song, and many others, the groups of the 90s love their moms. This is a 5-minute tribute to their moms. It is long and drawn out. This is not my favorite song on the album, but not the worst.
Next up Who Do You Think You Are, where we go back to the upbeat, 70s vibe-style songs. This is where the Spice Girls excel at the fun, upbeat songs that can hide their voices. Not all the girls are as talented as the others, and so in the upbeat songs, you can hide it well. Something Kinda Funny takes an R&B take to the Spice Girls. I don’t know if that is the best route for them, but the song is good, and the writing is good, so it is a pretty pleasant addition. The song just doesn’t fit with the rest of the album.
Naked, much like 2 Become 1, is a strange song. It is explicit as well. The biggest issue with this song is that it is just weird. There are talking portions, singing portions, and a call portion of the song (which was normal for the 90s circa Britney and Backstreet Boys). I don’t know what is happening in this song. I really wish I knew, but I don’t.
If U Can’t Dance is so reminiscent of every end song to every 90s album. It is a strange song that is repetitive and doesn’t really fit, so they put it at the end. Part of it is in Spanish, and part of it is in English. It is a bit R&B, a bit Pop, but is an interesting addition to the album.
I was pleasantly surprised by this album. It was fun. I can see why so many people loved the Spice Girls back then!
Does it Hold Up?
The album has highs and lows. Mostly Wannabe is helping it hold up though.
So many people love this album, so I have to give it up to them for that!
Do you agree with my assessment? Post your thoughts in the comments below!
As always, Creating Nostalgia Millennial Style!