Free


Free

Chart Facts
  • 2 Mar 1991 – Reached No. 9 in the UK
  • 11 May 1991 – Reached No. 31 in the US
Tracklisting
  • In the Name of Love – 4:27
  • Cry for Help – 4:48
  • Move Right Out – 3:50
  • Be With You – 4:07
  • Really Got a Problem – 4:15
  • Is This Really Love? – 3:26
  • This Must Be Heaven – 4:42
  • Never Knew Love – 3:07
  • The Bottom Line – 5:13
  • Wonderful You – 5:08
  • Behind the Smile – 4:33
  • Some Kinda Love – 4:28 *(On the Japan release only)
Track Info

In the Name of Love – 4:27
Written by Michael Macdonald
Produced by Gary Stevenson and Rick Astley
Engineered by Henrik Nilson and Gary Stevenson
Mix engineered by Ren Swan
Guitar: Paul Halborg
Keys and Synths: Dave West
Backing Vox: Phil Perry, Kevin Dorsey
String Arr: Anne Dudley
Percussion: Jacob Andersen

Cry for Help – 4:48
Written by Rick Astley and Rob Fisher
Produced by Gary Stevenson and Rick Astley
Engineered by Henrik Nilson and Gary Stevenson
Mix engineered by Ren Swan
Drums: Vinnie Colauita
Guitar: Hywel Mags
String Arr: Anne Dudley
Organ & Synths: Dave West
Choir Arr: Andrae Crouch

Move Right Out – 3:50
Written by Rick Astley and Rob Fisher
Produced by Gary Stevenson and Rick Astley
Engineered by Henrik Nilson and Gary Stevenson
Mix engineered by Ren Swan
Drums: Per Lindval
Percussion: Jacob Andersen
Bass: Lars Denielson
Guitars: Robert Ahwai and Hywel Mags
String Arr: Anne Dudley
Backing Vox: Carol Kenyan and Dee Lewis
Brass Arr: Jerry Hey
Synths & Organ: Dave West

Be With You – 4:07
Written by Rick Astley and Mark King
Produced by Gary Stevenson and Rick Astley
Engineered by Henrik Nilson and Gary Stevenson
Mix engineered by Ren Swan
Drum Overdubs: Per Lindval
Guitars: Hywel Mags
Brass Arr: Jerry Hey
Piano: Niklas Medin
Organ: Henrik Nilsson
Synths & Drum Prog: Dave West

Really Got a Problem – 4:15
Written by Rick Astley and Mark King
Produced by Gary Stevenson and Rick Astley
Engineered by Henrik Nilson and Gary Stevenson
Mix engineered by Ren Swan
Drum Overdubs: Per Lindval
Percussion: Jacob Andersen
Bass: Neil Stobenhaus
Guitars: Hywel Mags
Backing Vox: Carol Kenyan
Sax: Dan Higgins
Piano, Synths & Drum Prog: Dave West

Is This Really Love? – 3:26
Written by Rick Astley
Produced by Gary Stevenson and Rick Astley
Engineered by Henrik Nilson and Gary Stevenson
Mix engineered by Ren Swan
Drums: Vinnie Colauita
Percussion: Jacob Andersen
Pianos & Synths: Dave West
Guitars: Gene Black
Brass Arr: Jerry Hey
Backing Vox: Carol Kenyan & Dee Lewis

This Must Be Heaven – 4:42
Written by Jon Lind, Jeffrey Cohen and Nicky Brown
Produced by Gary Stevenson and Rick Astley
Engineered by Henrik Nilson and Gary Stevenson
Mix engineered by Ren Swan
Drum Overdubs: Per Lindval
Percussion: Jacob Andersen
Guitars: Hywel Mags
Backing Vox: Carol Kenyan and Dee Lewis
Piano: Niklas Medin
Organ, Synths & Drum Prog: Dave West

Never Knew Love – 3:07
Written by John Paul and Derek Bordeaux
Produced by Gary Stevenson and Rick Astley
Engineered by Henrik Nilson and Gary Stevenson
Mix engineered by Ren Swan
Drum Overdubs: Per Lindval
Percussion: Jacob Andersen
Bass: Lars Denielson
Guitars: Hywel Mags
String Arr: Anne Dudley
Backing Vox: Carol Kenyan, Dee Lewis, Phil Perry and Kevin Dorsey
Brass Arr: Jerry Hey
Drum Prog, Piano & Synths: Dave West

The Bottom Line – 5:13
Written by Rick Astley
Produced by Gary Stevenson and Rick Astley
Engineered by Henrik Nilson and Gary Stevenson
Mix engineered by Ren Swan
Drums: Per Lindval
Double Bass: Niels Henning Osted Pedersen
Guitars: Robert Ahwai
Backing Vox: Carol Kenyan and Dee Lewis
Brass Arr: Jerry Hey
Piano: Niklas Medin
Organ: Henrik Nilsson

Wonderful You – 5:08
Written by Rick Astley
Produced by Gary Stevenson and Rick Astley
Engineered by Henrik Nilson and Gary Stevenson
Mix engineered by Ren Swan
Drums: Per Lindval
Double Bass: Niels Henning Osted Pedersen
Guitars: Robert Ahwai
Piano: Elton John
Backing Vox: Phil Perry and Kevin Dorsey
Sax: Dan Higgins
String Arr: Anne Dudley

Behind the Smile – 4:33
Written by Rick Astley
Produced by Gary Stevenson and Rick Astley
Engineered by Henrik Nilson and Gary Stevenson
Mix engineered by Ren Swan
Piano: Elton John
String Arr: Anne Dudley

Some Kinda Love – 4:28
(On the Japan release only)
Written by Al Hodge / Leslie Duncan / Tony Cox
Produced by Gary Stevenson and Rick Astley
Engineered by Henrik Nilson and Gary Stevenson
Mix engineered by Ren Swan
Drum Prog: Dave West
Drum Overdubs: Per Lindval
Latin Percussion: Jacob Andersen
Bass Synthesizer: Rob Fisher
Synth: Dave West
Guitars: Robert Ahwai and Gene Black
Brass Arr: Jerry Hey
Brass: Bill Reichenbach, Larry Hall and Larry Williams
String Arr: Anne Dudley
Backing Vox: Carol Kenyan and Dee Lewis

Review by Q Magazine (March 1991)

4 Stars – Excellent
“..establishes himself as a creditable songwriter and producer in the same wistful, blue-eyed soul vein as Michael McDonald..”

Review by Entertainment Weekly (March 1991)

Welcome to Rick Astley’s coming-out party. His new album represents the first time the skin-deep pop-soul singer has worked outside the stranglehold of his old producers, Stock-Aitken- Waterman. That power trio is known for sculpting a swirlingly ornate dance- pop sound as rigidly defined as classic Motown. Astley has co-produced this new album himself, penned most of its material, and dubbed it “Free”, all of which chillingly suggests we’ve got another George Michael on our hands- another likable lightweight who yearns to be taken dead seriously. Luckily Free merely substitutes one brand of blissfully shallow pop for another. His own style turns out to be less busy, and less danceable, than his old production team’s, but it’s just as energetically dippy. The album revives a hook-laden style of bubble-gum soul popular in the ’70s that treated R&B with a flip insouciance. Astley’s singing continues to be a draw; his voice is fluid, deep, and thoroughly unadorned. Astley’s entire style, in fact, is unfettered and unaffected; he’s the kind of pop lollipop that really hits the spot.