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In a review by Rolling Stone magazine, journalist Mark Coleman commended most of the songs on the album, which he said "displays Michael's intuitive understanding of pop music and his increasingly intelligent use of his power to communicate to an ever-growing audience." At the 1988 Brit Awards held at the Royal Albert Hall on 8 February, Michael received the first of his two awards for Best British Male Solo Artist.
The first single released from the album was "I Want Your Sex", in mid-1987.
The song was banned by many radio stations in the UK and US, due to its sexually suggestive lyrics. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for four consecutive weeks, becoming the best-selling single of 1988 in the US.
The second single, "Faith", was released in October 1987, a few weeks before the album. Faith topped the UK Albums Chart, and in the US, the album had 51 non-consecutive weeks in the top 10 of Billboard 200, including 12 weeks at No. Faith had many successes, with four singles ("Faith", "Father Figure", "One More Try", and "Monkey") reaching No. The album was highly acclaimed by music critics, with All Music journalist Steve Huey describing it as a "superbly crafted mainstream pop/rock masterpiece" and "one of the finest pop albums of the '80s".
He also contributed background vocals to David Cassidy's 1985 hit "The Last Kiss", as well as Elton John's 1985 successes "Nikita" and "Wrap Her Up".
Michael cited Cassidy as a major career influence and interviewed Cassidy for David Litchfield's Ritz Newspaper.
A coroner's report attributed his death to natural causes.