Vincent "No Middle Names" Clarke and Andy Ivan Bell have had consistent chart success since 'Sometimes' in late 1986... 'Stop!', taken from the Crackers International EP, made No.2 in January 1989.That middle names thing would have worked better the other way around, surely?
I must admit that even though I remember the EP charting at the time, it didn't occur to me until I looked it up yesterday that the title Crackers International was because it came out in time for Christmas. There was even a second 12" format which included a version of 'God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen', though the release finally reached its peak at the turn of the year, when 'Mistletoe and Wine' dropped 1-5 after Boxing Day. It shares with 'Sometimes' the honour of being their highest-peaking original material.
Though the duo offered four brand new songs here, 'Stop!' was the undoubted lead track and one of their catchiest efforts despite some rather daft lyrics, including the "jump before you look/get hung up on a hook" rhyme that I remember kids at my school making fun of. At less then three minutes it doesn't outstay its welcome either: for those taking notes at the back the version here is the fadeout edit from the original 7", not the slightly longer version that appears on some other formats.
Also appearing on: Now 9, 10, 13, 16, 17, 20, 21, 22, 23, 28, 29, 54
Available on: Pub Jukebox: 120 Original Hits