What's New? – Recent Updates & Additions

August 6, 2020

Thanks to Javier Richarte for pointing out something that deserves mention in the "Honorable Mention" addendum that was already at the end of my list of feature films that mention the Pet Shop Boys by name. It's the 1998 U.K. crime thriller Following, which includes a scene in which a Behaviour-era publicity photo of the Pet Shop Boys is tacked upon a bedroom bulletin board. Javier was also kind enough to tell me about the 1988 music video "Education" by the German band Okay, which provides a very fleeting and partial glimpse of a PSB poster. I've now noted this as well in my list of 6 guest appearances by Neil and/or Chris in other artists' music videos (plus 4 more if we stretch it). It's one of those four "stretches" at the end.

August 5, 2020

Thanks to Erik H. for catching and reporting a couple of sloppy writing errors in my entry for the song "For Every Moment." Sloppy writing now cleaned up!

July 28, 2020

Thanks to Nenad P. for letting me know that the "Nutcracker Fanfare" used in the authorized "Yes Megamix" is taken from the "This Is a Dub" mix of "All Over the World." I've now made the appropriate update.

July 25, 2020

Thanks to Gary Beaven from Nottingham for pointing out to me the 2001 single "Last Exit to Brooklyn" by the German duo Modern Talking. While it doesn't actually "sample" the Pet Shop Boys' "New York City Boy," it does make distinct allusions to it. Not only does its lyrics include the phrase "New York City boy" itself, but its repeated exhortations to "Party up!" clearly echo similar background vocals in the PSB track. I've made note of this in a new bullet-point annotation to my entry for that song by the Boys. By the way, thanks to PSB Floyd—whom I've just added to my Thank You page—for catching my careless error in originally referring to that duo as "Modern English" rather than by their correct name, Modern Talking. Careless error now corrected!

Thanks as well to Andrew Shaw for letting me know about the new remote lockdown cover of (you guessed it!) "It's a Sin" by the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra, inspired by listener requests. I've now noted this on my page that lists remakes of Tennant-Lowe songs. If you would like to hear it for yourself, it's available online.

Meanwhile, a number of site visitors have written to me over the past several days to tell me about two interesting items that I probably wouldn't have mentioned here except for the fact that people do keep writing to me about them. First there's a YouTube video by Adam Reader (who brands himself, with enviable aplomb, "The Professor of Rock") in which he provides an admiring summation of the Pet Shop Boys' career in the 1980s. Regrettably, he pretty much ignores everything since then, but I suppose that's par for the course coming from one of my fellow Americans. Second is a recent interview with producer Richard X in which he talks at some length about, among other things, his work with the Boys on "Fugitive." He doesn't reveal much that we didn't already know from other sources, but it's good to hear it in one place from his own perspective. Thanks so much to all of you (and we're talking about more than a half-dozen) who contacted me about these postings.

July 23, 2020

Thanks to Tobias Gadeau for clueing me in on the fact that "Music for Boys" could be heard briefly in a 2007 episode of the popular German crime drama Schimanski. I've noted this in the entry for that track at #14 in my list of Pet Shop Boys songs used in films and TV shows.

July 17, 2020

Thanks to Rory Simpson for letting me know about a previously unacknowledged use of "Opportunities (Let's Make Lots of Money)" in the June 2005 BBC documentary Live Aid - Against All Odds. I've now made note of it in the entry for that song at #6 in my list of Pet Shop Boys tracks used in non-musical films and TV shows.

July 15, 2020

Thanks so much to Paul Atkin for pointing me to a new cover of "We All Feel Better in the Dark," which I've now listed on my page devoted to remakes of Pet Shop Boys songs. If you wish to hear it for yourself, it's available on SoundCloud.

To be honest, I was somewhat hesitant to list this new cover—which is true also for the rendition of "Euroboy" from yesterday (see just below)—on account of the tremendous proliferation of such recordings online by little-known "indie" (or even outright amateur) artists. As we all know, with rather sophisticated musical technology readily available nowadays, virtually anyone is able to record and post music. It's never been easier to cover a PSB track and get it heard by others. I've already intentionally ignored quite a few recordings of this type. So I'm very close to declaring a moratorium on listing such cover versions. But I've made exceptions in these two cases not merely because of the substantial quality of these recordings but, more importantly, because they're the first remakes of those particular tracks that I'm aware of. That certainly counts for something. In short, from here on out, I'm much more likely to make note of the first (or second) cover of a particular Tennant-Lowe song than I am the umpteenth cover of perennial favorites like "It's a Sin," "West End Girls," and "Rent." If, however, a recording that falls in the latter category is by an established, well-known artist, I'll be sure to list it. After all, if someone like, say, Beyoncé were to cover "Domino Dancing" (another of those perennial favorites), do you think I would ignore that?

July 14, 2020

Thanks to porkchopkid for telling me about the only remake of "Euroboy" that either of us are aware of so far, which I've now noted on my page that lists covers of Tennant-Lowe songs. If you would like to hear it for yourself, you may do so on SoundCloud.

July 13, 2020

Thanks to C.M. for catching and reporting a typo, which I've now corrected, in my commentary on "Bolshy."

July 12, 2020

Thanks to Danny Bende for sharing his observation that the little "celeste riff" that opens "Bolshy" and recurs throughout appears to be written in C minor, as opposed to what I believe is the F minor foundation of the rest of the song. (I hope we're right about all that. C minor and F minor are closely related keys, however, differing by only one flat, so it would by no means be "strange.") I've noted this in my list of the key signatures of selected Pet Shop Boys songs.

July 11, 2020

Thanks to Patrick R. (whom I've just now added to my Thank You page) for letting me know about the first cover—or at least the first that has come to my attention—of "Will-o-the-wisp." It's a curious instrumental rendition that I was initially a bit hesitant to list on my page devoted to remakes of Pet Shop Boys songs, but I decided to go for it, if only because it is indeed the most likely first-ever cover of that track. If you like, you can hear a 30-second snippet of it on Apple Music. It's also available on iTunes and other such online sites; if you're willing to dig a bit, you may be able to find a longer excerpt.

July 10, 2020

I'm just taking this opportunity to wish Neil Tennant a very, very happy birthday!

July 7, 2020

Thanks to Rafael Lima for providing some clarifying information about the Portuguese phrases heard in "Get It Online"—specifically, that they are Brazilian Portuguese likely obtained from Google Translate and, in at least one of those cases, somewhat faulty. (If you've ever used Google Translate, you know how commonplace that faultiness can be.) I've made a few appropriate minor adjustments.