Frankie Goes To Hollywood ‎– Relax

ZTT ‎– 12 ZTAS 1
Vinyl, 12", 45 RPM, Reissue


A Relax (Sex Mix) 16:24
B1 Ferry Cross The Mersey 4:03
B2 Relax 4:20

Companies, etc.



This version of the single is a reissue of the UK first edition 12", issued in 1984. It was issued in speckled, gray, glossy "who! chance? blink!?" ZTT die-cut sleeve. Side A is labeled "Relax" with no mix title, but the phrase "Original Mix" at the top of the label. The record actually plays the 16:24 "Relax (Sex Mix)", mastered at 45 RPM.

Please see the Master Release Notes for links to other similar 12 ZTAS 1 releases.

Barcode and Other Identifiers

  • Matrix / Runout (Side A, Etched): 12 ZTAS 1 A⁵ GRAEME DAMONT
  • Matrix / Runout (Side B, Etched): 12 ZTAS 1 B4 DAMONT


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December 8, 2016
edited 11 months ago

The 16-minute Sex/Original mix of "Relax" is not exactly a fun dance track, nor is the 8-minute edited version. It's more just a collectors' item. The entire arrangement is essentially just a meandering, endless "dub version" where samples and elements of the song's instrumentation come and go along with generous amounts of reverb, but none of the familiar lyrics or essential parts of the song are to be found. It's like a bunch of rejected samples and spare parts thrown together, providing the listener with something that sounds kinda like the hit song, but only as a reminder, like getting the smell of delicious food without the taste and texture. The thrown-in "kissy noise" samples are also obnoxiously placed, even by 1983 standards.

The reason for this situation, as Trevor Horn likes to tell it, is that Horn had never been to a disco before. He didn't understand how DJs were mixing dance records, and what kinds of song structures did & didn't work on the dancefloor. After a visit to a New York club in late 1983, he finally "got it" and set out to make the New York Mix, which is the harder, more traditionally structured, 7-and-a-half minute extended version that's found on most of the other 12" releases.

I don't know whether to really believe this story. I mean, disco had long been established and had run its course by then. His band Buggles even scored huge disco-pop hit several years earlier with "Video Killed the Radio Star". So even if he was otherwise living under a rock, he surely knew what kinds of sounds would get people's booties shaking. It seems unlikely that he would have no clue that stripping the song of all of its interesting parts and then filling up an entire side of a 12" with leftovers wouldn't get people excited. Maybe he's just printing the legend because he's embarrassed. Or maybe he's trying to spin the decision to release numerous versions of the same song as fixing a mistake rather than crass commercialism.