Friday, September 7, 2007


Animotion is a 1980s U.S. New Wave/synthpop band best known for the above video "Obsession" (originally written by Michael Des Barres and Holly Knight), "Let Him Go", "I Engineer" and "Room to Move". Formed in 1983 from the remnants of a retro science-fiction band called Red Zone, they signed a record deal with Polygram Records in 1984 and made three albums. During 1986 and 1987, Animotion toured extensively, appearing alongside famous performers such as Depeche Mode, Howard Jones, INXS, Eurythmics, Simply Red, Phil Collins, and Genesis. They had great success in Germany and South Africa with their two first albums, thanks to the singles "Obsession" and "I Engineer" (both Top 10 in those countries), and entered several European charts in high positions during this period.

In the midst of recording their third album, Animotion went through personnel changes as all three founding members (Bill Wadhams, Astrid Plane and Charles Ottavio) departed. Following their departure, Ottavio and Plane married. Actress/dancer/singer Cynthia Rhodes, known for her performance as the character "Penny Johnson" in the 1987 film Dirty Dancing, replaced Plane as lead singer for Animotion's eponymous third album, informally known as "Room to Move" (due to the success of this song) to distinguish it from their first LP. The single "Room to Move" became a radio hit in April 1989, and their second Top 10 hit in the U.S., after "Obsession" in 1985; but the album itself failed to chart and Animotion disbanded for good after that.

The members reunited on February 8, 2001 in response to a request from KNRK in Portland, Oregon. In the summer of 2005, founding members Wadhams, Plane and Ottavio appeared as "Animotion" in the American version of the TV show Hit Me Baby One More Time, performing their hit "Obsession" and a cover of Dirty Vegas' "Days Go By".

Paul Antonelli - Keyboards (replaced by Smith)
Frenchy O'Brien - Drums (replaced by Blair)
Jim Blair - Drums (replaced by Rankin)
Kevin Rankin - Drums
Don Kirkpatrick- Guitar
Charles Ottavio - Bass
Astrid Plane - Vocals (replaced by Rhodes)
Greg Smith - Keyboards
Bill Wadhams - Vocals, Guitar, Keyboards (replaced by Engemann)
Cynthia Rhodes - Vocals
Paul Engemann - Vocals

Animotion (Mercury Records/Polygram Records 1984) #28 US
Strange Behaviour (Casablanca Records/Polygram Records 1986) #71 US; #21 Switzerland
Animotion (Room to Move) (Polygram Records 1989) #110 US
Obsession : The Best of Animotion (1996)
Animotion [Rebound] (1998)

"Obsession" (1985) #6 US; #5 UK; #17 Austria; #8 Germany; #9 South Africa
"Let Him Go" (1985) #39 US; #78 UK; #41 Germany
"I Engineer" (1986) #76 US; #19 Austria; #2 Germany; #4 South Africa; #6 Switzerland
"I Want You" (1986) #84 US; #27 Germany
"Room To Move" (1989) #9 US, #87 UK
"Calling It Love" (1989) #53 US

The song "Obsession" was used as the theme song to the Canadian produced special interest show The NewMusic which aired on Toronto's CITY TV.
The song "Obsession" is used as the theme song to the Canadian produced special interest show Fashion Television.
The song "Obsession" was used as the opening theme of the World Wrestling Federation television program Saturday Night's Main Event, which aired on NBC from 1985 to 1991. The song was replaced by generic instrumental music in 1988.
The song "Room To Move" is heard in the movie My Stepmother is an Alien (1989).
The song "Obsession" is heard twice in the 2005 film Adam & Steve, starring Craig Chester, Malcolm Gets, Parker Posey and Chris Kattan.
The song "Obsession" was used in the 2006 Nip/Tuck episode titled "Shari Noble."
The song "I Want You" was used as the theme for the theatrical trailer for the 1988 movie "Two Moon Junction" starring Sherilyn Fenn and Richard Tyson.
Obsession (song) is featured in the 2002 PlayStation 2 videogame Grand Theft Auto: Vice City as part of the New Wave radio station Wave 103.
The song "Let Him Go" was originally a more California-rock type track. This original version appeared on the first run of the first "Animotion" album, however, after the success of the new-wave sounding "Obsession", "Let Him Go" was remixed to sound more electronic. Subsequent pressings of the album, plus the Canadian version of the album, entitled "The Language of Attraction", contain the remix. The remix is the single and video versions as well. The original version is very rare.

External links
Animotion Web Site

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