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The often difficult second album was made to look easy by McFly, the four lads from London who saw Busted, their main rivals for the affections of pre-teenage hearts, split up in 2005, leaving them the only guitar-based pop band in town, and McFly did not disappoint their army of fans with Wonderland. At the time of release, it already contained two number one singles, "I'll Be OK" and the Comic Relief charity hit "All About You," although the Carly Simon/James Taylor B-side (track two on the CD single) "You've Got a Friend" was not included. The same mixture of good, fun 1960s-influenced pop songs and midtempo ballads is here, as on the debut album Room on the 3rd Floor, the opening track, "I'll Be OK," being a good example of a boy band trying to sound as little like a boy band as possible with real instruments, mainly guitars that, if you really stretched your imagination, on the intro could be compared to the Who's "Won't Get Fooled Again," although it only lasted about 15 seconds. The boys even felt confident enough to include a sitar on the song "Ultraviolet," which became their least successful single release to date. The turning point of the album came about half way through (on vinyl it would have been side two) with the "All About You" track, which opened with an orchestral piece and then continued throughout the song with a strummed acoustic guitar and even had a woodwind instrumental break. And of course, there was quite a memorable song in there as well. This theme was expanded even further on the two-part track "She Falls Asleep" -- part one a dreamy instrumental heavy on the orchestral string section; part two a sophisticated ballad, quite dramatic in its production -- and the album concluded as it began, with more guitar-led harmony pop with the songs "Nothing" and "Memory Lane." One might sneer, but Wonderland was a good album from an obviously talented group of young lads.

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