Now 8 is one of the strongest of the 'Now Music' series (the very first one from 1983 still rates a mention as being up with the best as well!). Now 8 was released in December 1986 and generally sums up some of the best singles in the UK charts in the latter part of that year.
Now 8 was the first album to be released on CD, although this single CD only includes 17 of the 32 tracks featured on the original double vinyl release. This review therefore, is for the vinyl/cassette edition.
A very strong first side kicks off with Duran Duran's hit 'Notorious'. Other notable tracks include 'Suburbia' (Pet Shop Boys), 'Breakout' (Swing Out Sister) 'Higher Love' (Steve Winwood) and 'In Too Deep' (Genesis). The biggest hit of 1986 was 'Don't Leave Me this Way' by the Communards (number 1 for 4 weeks in September 1986) which is also on there. The second side is a change of pace, featuring the likes of Jermaine Stewart and Janet Jackson among others... overall it is not as strong as side 1 with Cameo's 'Word Up' probably the best song of the 8.
On record 2, tracks from Peter Gabriel/Kate Bush, Madness, Status Quo, Huey Lewis and the News and Cutting Crew take up the bulk of a generally strong side 3. Apart from Kim Wilde's cover of 'You Keep Me Hanging On' and It Bites' 'Calling All The Heroes' side 4 isn't really worth bothering with, and it also features a dreadful cover of Abba's 'Waterloo' (courtesy of Dr and the Medics).
Overall summary... Now 8 is a generally enjoyable compilation... the stronger selections make up for the weaker moments, and it is better than the three Now compilations before it. More than anything else though for me it is a marvellous trip down memory lane - I was 13 in 1986 and many of the tracks serve as a fond reminder of people and places at that time.