Now That’s What I Call Music 7 to be reissued as a two-CD set

Now 7 reissued as a 2CD set

The 1986 compilation is released on CD for the first time

Now That’s What I Call Music 7 is now available to pre-order as a two-CD set.

The compilation was originally issued in August 1986 and was a reasonably strong outing featuring hits of the day such as Peter Gabriel‘s ‘Sledgehammer’, the Pet Shop Boys ‘Opportunities (Let’s Make Lots of Money)’, Wham!‘s last single ‘The Edge of Heaven’, Bowie‘s ‘Absolute Beginners’, a-ha‘s ‘Hunting High and Low’, Simply Red‘s ‘Holding Back The Years’ and ‘bonus track’ Queen‘s ‘A Kind of Magic’.

There’s also plenty of top quality one-hit-wonders of the era too, such as Owen Paul‘s ‘My Favourite Waste of Time’, Stan Ridgeway‘s ‘Camouflage’, Furniture‘s ‘Brilliant Mind’ and Nu Shooz‘s ‘I Can’t Wait’.

Three tracks are missing from this reissue: David Bowie’s ‘Absolute Beginners’, ‘On My Own’ (Patti Labelle And Michael McDonald) and The Real Roxanne’s Bang Zoom (Let’s Go Go). Disappointing and one presumes we can expect the usual sloppiness, where proper single versions are replaced by album cuts. The ‘Now’ team have ignored constant feedback about this from fans. Nevertheless, an essential purchase if you’ve been buying the others.

Now 7 is released on 27 November 2020 (was 20 Nov).

Original track listing of Now 7

  1. Sledgehammer
    Peter Gabriel
  2. Sing Our Own Song
  3. Let’s Go All The Way (Short Blix Mix)
    Sly Fox
  4. Lessons In Love
    Level 42
  5. Opportunities (Let’s Make Lots Of Money)
    Pet Shop Boys
  6. Sinful!
    Pete Wylie
  7. Camouflage
    Stan Ridgway
  8. Paranoimia
    The Art Of Noise And Max Headroom
  9. The Lady In Red
    Chris De Burgh
  10. Absolute Beginners*
    David Bowie
  11. Invisible Touch
  12. All The Things She Said
    Simple Minds
  13. Happy Hour
    The Housemartins
  14. Look Away
    Big Country
  15. Brilliant Mind
  16. Call Of The Wild
    Midge Ure
  17. The Edge Of Heaven
  18. My Favourite Waste Of Time
    Owen Paul
  19. Too Good To Be Forgotten
  20. Spirit In The Sky
    Doctor & The Medics
  21. Venus
  22. New Beginning (Mamba Seyra)
    Bucks Fizz
  23. Hunting High And Low
  24. Holding Back The Years
    Simply Red
  25. A Kind Of Magic
  26. When The Going Gets Tough The Tough Gets Going
    Billy Ocean
  27. Set Me Free
    Jaki Graham
  28. I Can’t Wait
    Nu Shooz
  29. Bang Zoom (Let’s Go Go)
    The Real Roxanne With Hitman Howie Tee*
  30. Amityville (The House On The Hill)
    Lovebug Starski
  31. Headlines
    Midnight Star
  32. You And Me Tonight
  33. On My Own*
    Patti Labelle And Michael McDonald

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Can anybody point me to a CD with the 7 inch mix of The Real Roxanne – (Bang Zoom) Let’s Go Go – Thanks


For all the faults, I still wanted a copy. I picked it up today for £8 in Sainsbury’s. I expect the other big supermarkets will be selling at a similar price.

Adrian Langley

Aside from missing tracks and wrong mixes, what really baffles me about this release is that the spine reads “NOW MUSIC 7” instead of “NOW THAT’S WHAT I CALL MUSIC 7”. All previous releases at least got THAT part right! What possible justification can there be for that? Looks ridiculous on the shelf next to the previous 6.

Joseph Davies

Got my Now 7 and it doesn’t have the Matrix Mix of ‘Opportunities (Let’s Make Lots Of Money)’ 3:20, it’s the (Full Length Original Seven-Inch) 4:37.

Also it has the album mix 5:10 of ‘Sledgehammer’ not the single fade 4:53.

Simple Minds – All The Things She Said is the edit 4:00, instead of the album mix 4:15, which was on the original Now LP.

Simply Red – Holding Back The Years is the full album mix 4:28, not the Edit 4:04 that was on the original Now 7.

The biggest oddity is the Billy Ocean – When The Going Gets Tough, The Tough Get Going is a weird 3:00 edit, not the 7” Mix 4:07.

Nu Shooz – I Can’t Wait is not the Single Mix 3:37 but the full length album Mix 5:25.

Kevin Hughes

All credits and extensive research goes to nlgbbbblth.

nlgbbbblth November 27, 2020

Referencing Now That’s What I Call Music 7, 2xCD, Comp, CDNOW7

The Now That’s What I Call Music 7 CD was released today. I have done a comparison with it and my original LP. Here are the differences – some more obvious than others. If you notice anything else, please feel free to add.

Peter Gabriel – Sledgehammer (Album version used instead of early fade single mix which was on Now 7 LP)
Pet Shop Boys – Opportunities (Let’s Make Lots Of Money) (4:37 Full-length original 7″ used instead of Alternative 7″ AKA Matrix mix that was unique to the Now 7 LP. I was expecting the regular & common 1986 7″ version but this is the one that turned up on Please: Further Listening)
David Bowie – Absolute Beginners (Omitted from CD)
Simple Minds – All The Things She Said (7″ promo edit used instead of album version which was on Now 7 LP)
Big Country – Look Away (Sounds more like album version instead of Robin Millar production which was on Now 7 LP – slightly different ending)
Simply Red – Holding Back The Years (Album version used instead of 7″ mix which was on Now 7 LP)
Billy Ocean – When The Going Gets Tough, The Tough Get Going (Edit version of 3:00 instead of noticeably longer 7″ mix which was on Now 7 LP)
Nu Shooz – I Can’t Wait (Album version used instead of 7″ mix which was on Now 7 LP – nearly 2 minutes longer)
The Real Roxanne with Hitman Howie Tee – (Bang Zoom) Let’s Go Go (Omitted from CD)
Patti LaBelle & Michael McDonald – On My Own (Omitted from CD)


I couldn’t agree more i have every Now from Now 1 to Now 107 (10 to 107 on double CD) Now 8 an Now 9 on (single CD) Now 1 to to Now 6 on (re-issue) haven’t picked up Now 7 (yet) but what I’m hearing about it here doesn’t sound good if I’m honest why dose the Now team continue to fuck things up for the public with putting stupid album versions an longer versions on these re-issue CDs for??? People want these as they where regardless of this an that I mean these are meant to be unique in there own way an….they are that alright these re-issue have been a complete pick-up sins they’ve started coming out either by leaving tracks out or putting other stupid versions/mixes of the tracks themselves which is very very very….annoying indeed i was looking forward to all these re-issues coming out but sins they’ve been fucking them up 1 though 6 I here 7 isn’t much better leaving out 3 tracks an shortening Billy Ocen when the going gets tough…3min..really??? It’s 4.03 at best they cut this down to 3.00 but put Nu-Shoz with i can’t wait over 5 min…makes no sense what so ever to me as for the PSB track I have this unique version as a download off YouTube in MP3 format which I’m happy with tbh I’d rather make my own versions of these CDs an add the extra tracks thst where on the video versions as there are a few extra tracks on those early videos that didnt make the cut on the LPs an cassettes (worse luck) i have all the Now videos that got realised which I will not part with for the world as they are like gold now to find as a kid growing up in the 80s meant the world to me as i was brought up in the right eara if I’m honest the best toys and even better music that’s round today as that’s all complete trash!


It does have the sort of ‘hype’ sticker on the front : QUEEN BONUS TRACK NOW 7 A KIND OF MAGIC. Although it’s not a sticker it’s actually printed on the front of the booklet. Odd when you consider they had to remove 3 tracks but still call the Queen Track a Bonus as it was on the original. I was expecting omissions and incorrect versions to the original (shock of the year covid19 aside if they used the promo 3:20 version of PSB – I have an mp3 of that anyway). But I was not expecting the Queen Track reference on the front! The Now team continue to frustrate, baffle, confuse and surprise us in equal measures. Release date for NOW 8 announced yet? (wink-wink).


Looking forward to this release. Your review seems quite biased though? From what i understand there’s a lot of licensing issues when re-producing these comps, and the versions that were on the originals aren’t always still available now (artists can be quite strange when it comes to compilations – I’ve heard that if Queen are on a comp its in the contract that it has to be track one, disc one?)…
Anyway, i’ll be getting this for my collection – it brings back a lot of memories!

David S

As this is an ongoing reissue campaign, its anyone’s guess what number they’re going up to(anyone know?), is there any chance you could do an interview with one of the Now reissue team Paul, I would be very interested to hear what they have to say.


I would have preferred for A Kind of Magic to have been included as a hidden track at the end of Disc 2 without it being listed on the back cover, as this would have been more in-keeping with the original album (albeit in a slightly different place). As a longtime Queen fan, I too have heard of the first or last track clause, however, while it applies to almost all of Queen’s Now appearances, it really only applies to the vinyl or cassette issues, as their inclusions on Now 16 (Queen), Now 23 (Brian) and Now 25 (Freddie) are the first tracks on the B sides of record/cassette one but are ultimately nestled in the middle of disc 1 on the CD issues, although to be fair Now 25’s first track is taken by the Queen + George Michael version of Somebody To Love. It’s worth noting that Brian’s first solo offering on Now 21 is neither a first or last track of any side of either disc (Bohemian Rhapsody is though). This clause clearly didn’t apply with the release of Now 54, which included the Queen + Vanguard remix of Flash. Maybe an exception was made as this was only a remix.


So apparently Queen makes it onto the cd reissue but 3 tracks don’t!
No: Absolute beginners from Bowie
No: Bang Zoom let’s go go from the real Roxanne
No: On My Own from Patti labelle & Michael

Too many missing tracks to call it a reissue. They should put these reissues to bed now if they can’t do it proper (imo)

Sarah T

In fairness, the Queen track is a lot better than the other three that didn’t make it.

Robert Taylor

Very disappointed to hear that these early Now collections certain tracks have been omitted and not replacing them with other tracks from that year and also not having the correct versions as they were originally on the vinyl albums. Im not sure why David Bowie Absolute Beginners have been omitted from Now 7 cd because it appeared on the Now 1986 the millennuim series collection that was released in 1999 so im baffled by this.

ian s

Three tracks from the original 1986 album release missing from the forthcoming CD release….



Well Bowie came as no surprise but why not Michael McDonald and Patti Labelle. My prediction was that Real Roxanne was going to be the wrong version but I certainly didn’t expect it to be missing. Poor show!


Utterly gutted by this. Now 7 was the 1st album I owned on cassette. Losing 9% of the tracklist is just lame. As a massive Queen fan, I’d rather they lost A Kind Of Magic as it was only a bonus track. The Real Roxanne track has been widely available on compilations over the years, although often omitting the Bugs Bunny samples. Doesn’t bode well for the final 3 reissues. Think I’ll stick to the “NOW 80s : Vol. 1 – 16” playlist on Spotify.


Sony needs to have all the nows back so we can have the money back and to put the now cds that came out and put in the and start from the beginning with all the songs added

Al Hine

For extra completeness, there should be a little sticker top right saying “Queen Bonus Track A Kind Of Magic” with the song missing from the CD inlay.

Daniel Wellington

I’m baffled why Universal/Sony keep putting the wrong versions of songs on these reissues. Surely they have the original Now albums in their archives. Why not use them as a guide when putting together these new editions?

Al Hine

They can’t find the original 7″ mix master tapes possibly, but I have suggested to the Now team on many occasions try & find mint copies of the LP’s & “master” the correct versions using a hi end record deck – this has been done by many artists in the past.


There was another Now album released around the same time as this one, which was Now The Summer Album. Although it would likely lose the two Beatles tracks that were included, it would be good to see it reissued on CD (and probably difficult for Sony to include too many wrong versions!)


I’m buying this compilation regardless of anything as well!
Roll on to “Now 8” and “Now 9” 2CD reissues! They’ve never been released as 2CD sets either.


Now 8 is one of my favourites. Now 9 was pretty good too.

Mic Smith

The version of Sledgehammer on the original double album sounds unlike any other version of the track in that the fairlight flute samples at the beginning are very low in the mix not helped by the quality of the vinyl which is dreadful. I would be interested from anyone who has the cassette version If they could confirm if this is also the case.

I doubt whether on the CD reissue Sledgehammer will be anything but the album version but if it is the 7” edit then I think that will be the first time it has appeared on CD even if the flute samples aren’t authentic Now 7 sounding.


There is a “Sledgehammer version” on Now 1986 (CD from 1993)with a running time of 4.40 min. could it be
the 7” version?

The album version is 5.11 min.


Hi Soren – the 7″ Edit of Sledgehammer is usually listed at 4:58, though it runs 5:00. It’s just an early fade of the 5:12 LP version, and it’s been released on CD.

The US Promo Edit is the real rarity – it runs 4:02, and is still unavailable on CD.


Hi DLG thank you for the information (-:


There’s the 4 minutes edit that appeared on the 12 inch US promo and German 7 inch, that has never been released on CD. My favorite mix.


Cassettes don’t play as with most of the early Now sets. EMI used tape that turns sticky with age. Scandalous


Yep Sledgehammer has a ridiculously low intro on the cassette. Probably didn’t even notice it for the first year of playing the tape!

Ant in NZ

The mix of Opportunities on Now 7 was released officially in South Africa (https://www.discogs.com/Pet-Shop-Boys-Opportunities-Lets-Make-Lots-Of-Money/release/5824213). I have this 7″ and can confirm that it is identical to the Now 7 version. I doubt that the WL TP is different; Chris and Neil wouldn’t have been stockpiling Now 7 given that the mix was released to the wild on matrix A-3-1-2 and in South Africa. I think it likely that the person saying it is “not the same” without clarification is trolling based on the 1 second timing difference. I would also be surprised if the same version of Opportunities on the original Now 7 appears on the Now 7 CD – technically the mix was part of the release from 1985 and charted poorly (peaked at 116 on the UK chart) whereas I always thought Now 7 was supposed to represent the hits from 1986. I fully expect it much more likely that they put on the 1986 Stephen Hague produced 3’36” remix instead which charted higher on the UK charts (11) and would technically qualify it as the proper “hit” version for inclusion on Now 7. I would of course be delighted if they prove me wrong!
For the PSB completist out there, the Australian 7inch had a unique edit of Version Latina which hasn’t turned up anywhere else (promo or otherwise) as far as I am aware and (IMO) sounds like a “proper” remix of the original 7″ version (sharing the same intro and outro) without the typical untidy edits that often result from using the 12″ version as the basis (which also lacked the intro and outro sections.)


PSB fan here and I confirm this! I have both South African and Australian 7″ records!


Would love to see the original hits albums getting a release.


FYI, Nu Shooz was a two-hit wonder: “Point of No Return” was also a radio hit, at least here in the States.


They also had the song “Should I Say Yes” that just missed the top 40, but was an R/B hit I believe.

John Caddell

If Queen are on it, they’ll be Disc 1, Track 1. This is a stipulation Queen Productions have had in place for a few years, a condition of them appearing on any compilation.


On Now 3 reissue they were CD2 track 1


I’ve been buying the reissues and I’m disappointed that certain tracks originally on the album are no longer there BUT I feel that instead (to make up for loss of those tracks) they should put other singles which were in the chart around the time of the albums release


I thought they should add bonus tracks to each disc with the songs that appeared exclusively on the VHS releases

Craig Hedges

Whilst this comments section has some PSB interest, does anyone know why their website has changed to have a copyright for Warner Music UK, changed from PSB Partnership. Have they re-signed to Parlophone? or have they sold their rights to Warners?

Ursula Dickerson

Does anyone send the links to these to the Now team or do they know what feedback they are getting about screwing the versions up? Its frustrating that they don’t seem to care to the bad reactions!


Quality track list. Happy memories of playing the vinyl after school back in the day.
‘New Beginning’ – surely Bucks Fizz’s masterpiece?

John MC cann

More of a land of make believe man myself!

Tom Walsh

Land of Make Believe was brilliant…fantastic, lush, rich production. Imagine a world where a Eurovision group(apart from Abba obvs) could release something as brilliant as that!

CJ Feeney

Land of Make Believe was co-written by Peter Sinfield. His first big hit despite his early prog sucess as in-house lyricist for King Crimson

Anthony Grice

It was a massive comeback for them with their new member Shelley. It’s a great song. My favourite album was Are You Ready


Bucks Fizz made so many good songs, many after their heyday of 81/82. Songs like When We Were Young, I Hear Talk, Breaking Me Up, You And Your Heart So Blue and New Beginning. Maybe not given enough credit because of their Eurovision beginnings but beyond that they made some great music.


Bucks Fizz were fun and totally uncool for the young teenager that I was at the time of their hits with Jay Aston, but I still quietly liked them. Are You Ready and Hand Cut have many decent songs. You Love Love, If You Can’t Stand The Heat, Now Those Days Are Gone, My Camera Never Lies are all good pop songs. The two cd releases of the albums from a years go were well done. The Fizz now work with Mike Stock of Stock Aitken and Waterman, so they’re still making pop songs nearly forty years later.


I’m a bit confused about this release (and others in this series), and what’s the reason for it. Is it pure nostalgia (in the same vein as, say, retro T-shirts, miniature versions of old game consoles, or Star Wars action figures in retro-like packaging), or have these releases been collector’s items since the 80s to begin with?
The music itself isn’t that unique, most of those songs are available on CD already anyway.


Yeah, and after vol. 7 I have the whole collection on CD which is a physical cultual document of the evolution of british pop music in the last 38 years.

Bifford Michael Pechacek

The first ten or so Now!’s were not released on cd at the time properly, a few got odd single cd releases, so it’s a chance to finally have them in that format! Maybe after this they’ll get to releasing 36 and up on vinyl so I can complete those? LOL!

Mark Franklin

The version of Opportunities on the original Now 7 was the Matrix Mix. It was rare at the time and as such, Neil and Chris asked for a number of copies of the album as they thought they’d be sought after. I’m pretty sure this mix will not be on the re-release.


According to a comment on discogs the Now 7 version isn’t exactly the same as the original 7″ Test Pressing version aka Matrix Remix, but differs slightly:


It’s definitely rare and hasn’t been released on CD before. However, a significantly longer edit of this mix (labelled “original 12-inch mix” for some reason, despite being used for neither 12″ single) appeared on “Further Listening 1984-1986” with the Please reissue. Other than this one being length-edited, they are the same.


I’ll be getting this one. If they’ve missed out the bonus track, it doesn’t matter


Some sleuthing on Discogs makes me think this version of Opportunities was also on the Essential Pet Shop Boys compilation from 1998.


No, the version on Essential has a completely different running time.

Gareth Jones

Been looking forward to this one, as I still have the original double cassette! I loved this volume mostly for the oddball quirky tracks like Stan Ridgeway, Max Headroom, Real Roxanne and Lovebug Starski. Regrettably it’s at my parent’s house though, and I’ve no plans to visit them again for a while during Covid!

I do hope they don’t make a complete balls-up of the reissue. The wrong PSB mix is guaranteed, I reckon. Plus they might not even include Queen. As I recall, and people are welcome to correct me if I’m wrong, but Queen wasn’t actually on the tracklisting. It was added last-minute, with just a sticker put on the sleeve saying it was a bonus track. So I wouldn’t be surprised if they remove it from the reissue!

Strangely Brown

It’s this mix

Matrix Mix/Different Mix/New Edit + Mix


Hasn’t been released anywhere else, except as a test press white label and on NOW 7.


The mix of Opportunities on this compilation is known as the “matrix mix” which was made from elements of the original and remix version, it was more of a work in progress mix, and has not appeared anywhere else but on a very rare promo 7″.


We already had this discussion in the Now 6 entry. It was released.


Metal Mickey

Stan Ridgway deserves/d a far better fate than being remembered as a one-hit-wonder novelty artist… The Big Heat album (from which came Camouflage) is excellent, the follow-up Mosquitos is even better, and his previous work with Wall Of Voodoo is also well-worth checking out, especially Call Of The West, a classic “alt-rock” LP…

Newbies should start with the Songs That Made This Country Great best-of collection, which has the bonus of including the fantastic Don’t Box Me In with Stewart Copeland (from the Rumble Fish soundtrack)…


The first Now I bought on cassette and it was never out of the car player for months. What a by -an-large stellar and eclectic line up. Compare and contrast to today’s ‘singles’, either drippy, lyrically banal, auto-tuned, unlistenable genres or all of the aforementioned. It’s not age either, by 1986 I was well past my teenage pop years. A few years after 1986, I was running to the Indy hills and have stuck there since for new stuff.


You are correct that it’s nothing to do with age regarding the current music climate which on a whole is garbage. I mentioned current there but it’s been going on a lot longer than that and to think we had all those classic singles and albums from the 60’s right up to say the 90’s. It’s sad that the younger generation in 20 or 30 years will have no classic singles or albums to look back on from this current era.


I think they will. Our parents used to say the same during the 80s and 90s.


I bet it doesn’t have the 7′ single mix of Hunting High and Low.


Furniture’s Brilliant Mind has, over the years, become one of my all time favourite tracks.
There are some great tracks on this compilation, so I’ll get this.
I’m not being too hopefully that they will put the NOW 7 vinyl version of Opportunities on this CD release, which would be a shame.

Craig Hedges

I thought this was released earlier than August 1986, another big gap since 6 in Nov 1985, and was surprised to see Lady in Red on it. It was actually number one in the singles chart when the compilation was released as it had lingered in the chart a while before getting to the top. I don’t think that occurred very often in Now history…. but I could be wrong.

Stephen Roddam

The reason for the gap was that a Hits album came out earlier in the year. In those days there would be a Hits in the spring, a Now in the summer then one of each in the autumn. Spiller’s Groovejet was on a Now album before it was released as a single.

Peter Muscutt

‘Camouflage’ is a quality song – was only listening to that the other day… God, reading the track list of this makes you feel old.

Steven Campbell

Looking forward to this as Camouflage is on it amongst others!


If anything, it generates debate.


Ha ha. Good comment Paul.

Strangely Brown

Expect the normal version of PSB then and not the rare mix that appeared originally.

Crap quality control from a team that doesn’t give a fuck about it all.


Now 7 I think has a rare version of PSB’s Opportunities too. I have no faith in NOW to produce what fans / collectors actually want and in fact ignoring the constant stream of feedback, just is arrogant. They will justify that they are good value 80s compilations, which is fine for the supermarket buyer – but they are not Now 7 etc. A little bit of work and they could produce something which satisfies both markets.


7 is the one I’ve been waiting for as it’s the only I ever owned. I got it from my mum and dad after I had foot surgery.


Same for me! (minus the foot surgery) I discovered several artists I was unfamiliar with from this comp and quickly became a fan. Made a compilation for someone last week that included New Beginning. This is where I first heard it!