Heaven 17 / 5 Classic Albums


Another one of those great value 5 Classic Albums sets will be released next month, this time featuring those purveyors of synth-pop, Heaven 17

All of their studio long-players from the original era feature in this five-CD set; that is, Penthouse and Pavement (1981), The Luxury Gap (1983), How Men Are (1984), Pleasure One (1986) and Teddy Bear, Duke & Psycho (1988).

As usual, expect perfunctory packaging and no bonus tracks – the trade-off for the giveaway price of £11.

Five Classic Albums will be released on 17 June 2016.

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“Not sure that the bonus material is up to much but it is nice to have” (Trash)

Well that just about sums up my last 20 years and thousands of pounds in record-collecting in 16 words……………………….

Psychologists please let me know exactly why it is “nice to have” – that would help me enormously with my record collecting addiction.


I would prefer Deluxe Editions of “How Men Are”(1984) and “Pleasure One” (1986) with extended singles, B-Sides and bonus tracks than this cheap box-set release of the standard albums in card sleeves and a card box. The only good thing about it is the price but I will not be purchasing it.


The artwork looks like three men getting ready for a wedding.

From Aztec kings to New York Queens,

I get that this is a bare-bones affair, but are albums #4 and #5 remastered? They have never had remastered re-releases, AFAIK. Seems like a wasted opportunity, if not.

I will go out on a limb: I think I prefer Teddy Bear to Pleasure One. Both have their moments, though.

Patrick Gleeson

Would love to see an expanded edition of ‘How Men Are’, like the first two albums received – superb album …

elliott buckingham

would love a deluxe pleasure one with the 12″ singles released by far their most consistant album


Ordered! That’s for the news once again Paul!

Derek Murray

What annoyed me was all those great 80s synth bands decided to veer off the beaten track and use ‘real musicians with ‘real’ instruments and they died on their arse. H17 came back with Bigger than America and people started listening to them again.
Lesson learnt


That Digital only version of How Men Are is great. I’d love a CD version of it…


@Trash – it’s on amazon digital…


I remember buying this myself some years back, just to have all the extra material.


@ Eric –
Thank you. I have now done the same.
Not sure that the bonus material is up to much but it is nice to have.


@Derek T – can’t find anything on iTunes.. I don’t have Spotify or Deezer…
Where have you seen it?

Derek T.

There is a digital deluxe version of How Men Are with 11 bonus tracks, if anyone’s interested. Available from the usual places. A little box set for it like those for P&P and Luxury Gap would have been great, though.


No one knows the tracklist for this yet


Same as the original releases. That’s why it’s a budget release.


You assume so….


Where is the ‘How Men Are’ Deluxe Box? The Penthouse and Luxury Gap sets are really good.
I don’t require any more reissues after that, mind.

Derek Langsford

Pass on this – not for fans who already have these and more. I’ve been waiting for the promised ‘How Men Are’ Deluxe for a while now to add to the first two album deluxe versions (Disc 2 of ‘The Luxury Gap’ Deluxe is so sublime). ‘How Men Are’ Deluxe would likely be my last H17 purchase.


Yeah Trouble and Train of Love in Motion are great – Contenders isn’t the only goodie.

Just sayin'

Rick – nobody wants to like those more than I do. I just don’t think the songs are there, though. (Actually, I could have been harsher – I think the slide was already in progress on most of How Men Are. ) I also found it odd how truly awful that one from the late 90s was (can’t even remember what it was called off the top of my head), and how good, from the same period, ABC’s Skyscraping was – on which GG is listed as co-writer on everything. So I blame Martyn, lol.

And Rob – you’re forgetting the utter “masterpieces” (cough) that were Total Devo and Smooth Noodle Maps. (Or at least I bet you wish you could, lol.) And I will say the song “Shout” itself is pretty good, and “C’mon” is half decent. But the rest of that album – eesh. Even the Beatles riff can’t save that one song. And I mean, some of their early stuff is practically prog in terms of the time signatures alone. De-evolution, indeed.


@Just Sayin – Just goes to show how different we all are… :-)

I love the Shout album – the last good Devo album imho.

As for Pleasure One – I *love* this album too. I actually prefer it to How Men Are… just!
Teddy Bear is not good though (but as RickJapan says ‘Responsibility’ is superb!).
Also I hope that the ‘one from the late 90s’ you refer to isn’t ‘Bigger than America’ because that is a *fantastic* album, a real return to form with a lovely analogue synth sound (and it features the great Claudia Brucken). Give it another go… it’s a grower.


Claudia Brucken isn’t on Bigger than America as good an album as it is.


@Neil…. Hmmm interesting.
I say this because I was invited into the studio by Martyn (Ware) during the recording of Bigger than America and Brucken was there doing backing vocals at the time (on the track Designing Heaven). However I checked the credits and she is not credited at all although she is mentioned in the thank you section.
I also still believe you can hear her voice on the track (but maybe that is my mind playing tricks).

Billy D

Never heard nor purchased SNM. Something for Everyone didn’t contain anything for me. They should have included Watch Us Work It.


Just sayin’, I think that’s a little harsh…lol

I would agree that Pleasure One and Teddy Bear don’t hold a candle to the previous 3 albums, but they do have some gems in there (Contenders, Trouble & Look At Me for Pleasure One, Train of Love in Motion (awesome!!) & Responsibility for Teddy Bear).

If there were bonus tracks added to those albums, I would definitely think about re-buying, but I’m probably in the minority (that’s where I usually am….!!)

So, this set holds no interest for me, but I live in hope that more stuff surfaces in the future…

Rob C

Devo’s Shout wasn’t that bad – what came next until Something For Everybody was sadly.

Just sayin'

Pleasure One had one good song on it (Contenders). The rest of it, and all of TBD&P, remain one of the greatest unexplained examples of previously great/subsequently atrocious songwriting ability known to man.

(See also : Devo – Shout and beyond, Dave Stewart – anything post Vegas)

Peter Yarrow

I have a signed vinyl copy of Pleasure One from 80-something … bet it’s worth zilch!

DJ Salinger

You’ve just reminded me I have one of those as well, Pete. We’ll be rich I tell you, rich!

Bought from Virgin on Oxford St on the day of release. An experience marred only by actually playing the album when I got home. And realising the H17 boys had just experienced a pretty catastrophic falling-out with their muse…

Billy D

Pleasure One actually charted in the US (#177) which means it sold about 20 copies. I believe it was released here on cd as well.
What I would like to see is the first US H17 album on cd. It is a blend of the first two albums. This happened over here occasionally. If the US companies missed out on the first hit they would combine albums. More famously the first US OMD album. https://www.discogs.com/Orchestral-Manoeuvres-In-The-Dark-OMD/master/461812 This would be nice to have on cd as well.


A flimsy slipcase, cardsleeves, basic artwork, no bonus tracks – a luxury gap indeed…..

Jakob Rehlinger

If they’d shifted things back a year to include the B.E.F. album in stead of Teddy Bear, Duke & Psycho, I’d be all over this.

peter m

I Think the gary glitter track might be a deal breaker for some……….

adam shaw

They are playing the Jazz Cafe in London this summer ,
Id be suprised if the gig is to promote this release .


what a horrible cover :(


I liked it soon as I saw it. always liked the How Men Are album pic. this is a nice version of it.
def getting this. thanks paul.

Billy D

I concur.

Auntie Sabrina

Card sleeves and a slipcase then, still for £11 they must only be making pennies on these tyoe of releases


I daresay it makes financial sense in order to sell copies of the other three as most interest in their back catalogue is for P&P and Luxury Gap. Even as a fan I rarely listen to those others.

Best album of theirs post Luxury Gap is Bigger Than America. Great album accompanied by some great remixes. A two disc of that I would buy in a second.