Steps – Platinum Collection

Sony Music Entertainment

Release Date: August 19th 2022

Reviewed by: Jonathan Andre

Steps Platinum Collection (Amazon mp3/iTunes)

Track Listing:

Disc 1:

  1. Deeper Shade of Blue (Radio Edit)
  2. Scared of the Dark
  3. One for Sorrow
  4. Heartbreak in this City (Single Mix)
  5. Tragedy
  6. Love’s Got a Hold On My Heart
  7. What the Future Holds (Single Mix)
  8. Last Thing On My Mind
  9. It’s the Way You Make Me Feel
  10. Stomp
  11. Something in Your Eyes
  12. Chain Reaction
  13. Story of a Heart
  14. Summer of Love
  15. 5, 6, 7, 8
  16. Better the Devil You Know
  17. Neon Blue (Radio Mix)
  18. Better Best Forgotten
  19. Heartbeat
  20. Hard 2 Forget
  21. The Runner (Steps Platinum Version)

Disc 2:

  1. Here and Now (Soundtrade Mix)
  2. The Slightest Touch
  3. After the Love Has Gone
  4. Say You’ll Be Mine
  5. Take Me For a Ride (Single Mix)
  6. Love U More
  7. A Hundred Years of Winter (F9 Remix – Edit)
  8. Baby Don’t Dance (W.I.P. Radio Edit)
  9. Dancing With a Broken Heart
  10. Paradise Lost
  11. To the Beat of My Heart
  12. You’ll Be Sorry (The Pardon Mix)
  13. No More Tears on the Dancefloor
  14. Words are Not Enough
  15. Happy
  16. I Know Him So Well
  17. Just Like the First Time
  18. When I Said Goodbye
  19. Deeper Shade of Blue (Flashmob Remix)
  20. One For Sorrow (Steps 25 Revisited Mix)
  21. Stomp (Steps 25 Revisited Mix)
  22. Tragedy (Steps 25 Revisited Mix)

When Steps burst onto the scene way back in the late 90s, I don’t even think that they thought that they were still going to be around 25 years later, let alone even a year later. During the time when this 5-piece vocal group debuted their album Step One back in 1998, it was all-things boy-band and girl group- bands like the Backstreet Boys, *NSYNC, Westlife, Spice Girls, S Club 7, Atomic Kitten, B*Witched, A*Teens, New Kids on the Block, Bellefire, Boyz II Men, Take That and Destiny Child were all having varying degrees of success during the late 90s/early 2000s; so for Steps to be dropped within the middle of this vocal-group melting pot, seemed to be a little bit short-sighted…just a little. Even the members of the initial lineup of the band seemed a little hesitant about even joining in the first place- and why would you? When you’re initially starting out, and you see you’re competing against artists like Spice Girls or Backstreet Boys, you’d be thinking just like the members of Steps, that you’d be a one-album wonder. Nevertheless, here we are- 25 years later, and Steps are still a band. Though they did decide to break up after album no. 3 (in the year 2000), it was not only until 2017 (not including their one-off reunion to release a 2012 Christmas album) that these 5 members really started to embrace whatever decided to re-emerge from the reuniting of arguably one of the most underrated vocal groups of the late 90s/early 2000s. Steps are here to stay, and though this band have unveiled countless compilation albums over the years, they’ve since unveiled yet another best-of project. This time, it’s a whopping 43 songs, and while the double-disc album can seem a little intimidating, I must admit- this 2 disc album seemingly covers the band’s celebratory career, right up from their debut in 1998, till now. A must-have, especially if you’re a fan of Steps in previous years, these five members have stayed together as said band for years and years…and Platinum Collection is the result of this camaraderie and friendship.

We’ve covered Steps on this site before- my brother Josh did a review of the albums What the Future Holds and What the Future Holds Pt. 2, while also writing about Steps in an honourable mentions blog, highlighting artists that unfortunately ‘missed the cut’ of artists that we discussed within the Top 100 Influential Artists blog series list (though in hindsight, we probably should’ve somehow made a way to even talk and discuss Steps within the 100 Artists series…alas, that wasn’t meant to be. Nevertheless, here we are, in August 2022, and as see before us, yet another best-of project by this compelling and heartfelt quintet. Titled Platinum Collection, it features standout songs throughout their whole career- from the early humble beginnings of songs like ‘Last Thing On My Mind’, ‘5, 6, 7, 8’, ‘One For Sorrow’, ‘Heartbeat’, ‘Better Best Forgotten’ and ‘Love U More’, to the more recent songs like ‘A Hundred Years of Winter’, ‘Take Me On A Ride’, ‘Heartbreak in This City’, ‘The Slightest Touch’, ‘What the Future Holds’, ‘To the Beat of My Heart’ and ‘Something in Your Eyes’; to name a few.

Encapsulating 6 studio albums into one double-disc 43 track set (and inclusive of new song ‘Hard 2 Forget’ and a bunch of remixes as well), is a massive feat, in and of itself. Sure, this best-of project probably won’t be perfect (what compilation album actually is?), but what I do know is this- that in all of their 25 years within and around the music industry (with a few breaks and hiatuses here and there), Steps have managed to create a fan base and a following that reminds listeners around the world, of the need for vocal groups to continue, to be reminded that songs from yesteryear can still impact and inspire, and maybe, make a comeback today. Yes, I would’ve wanted this ‘review’ to be a ‘this song is there from their studio album, whereas this song is not…why/why not?’, but then I realised, that there wouldn’t be any point for me to write the ‘review’ that way. What I have been saying these past few paragraphs, is that this U.K. group is fast becoming one of pop music’s best kept secrets for all these years (in my opinion), as this 5-piece have successfully channelled artists like The Spice Girls, ABBA, Kylie Minogue and several of their other contemporaries (S Club 7, Girls Aloud, B*Witched and Atomic Kitten, to name a few), to become continuously relevant, especially in a music industry that is forever changing. I haven’t listened to this band as much as my brother, and maybe that’s the point.

Sometimes, when someone is a massive fan of something, and is then told to ‘review’ their work, they tend to be overly critical (not intentionally), whereas someone like me, who hasn’t heard as much of Steps’s songs as I may have liked, could view this double-disc compilation as someone who is much more impartial, and say that this project, is literally a springboard someone can jump on, if they want to immerse themselves into all things Steps, and from there, go to their studio albums if they want. Sure, the style of Steps’s songs may not be as popular now, amongst millennials or Gen-Z’ers, but the truth of the matter remains, that this band is one for the history books. There’s a reason why they’ve lasted this long- maybe, just maybe, pop (the style curated by vocal groups, boy bands and girl groups), or even bubblegum pop (from the early careers of artists like Christina Aguilera, Britney Spears, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Mandy Moore, B*Witched, A-Teens, J. Lo, Backstreet Boys and *NSYNC), still has a place in the society of today, more than what people think. Well done Steps for this all-encompassing and enjoyable double-disc album. Here’s hoping people can jump aboard the ‘Steps-train’ in the upcoming weeks, months and maybe years ahead!

10 songs to listen to: Heartbreak in This City, One For Sorrow, Something in Your Eyes, Neon Blue, Hard 2 Forget, Take Me For a Ride, Dancing With a Broken Heart, Hundred Years of Winter, Stomp, Deeper Shade of Blue

Score: 5/5

RIYL: The Saturdays, S Club 7, Girls Aloud, Atomic Kitten, B*Witched

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