Pet Shop Boys
Overview
Pet Shop Boys are an English electronic dance music
Electronic dance music
Electronic dance music is electronic music produced primarily for the purposes of use within a nightclub setting, or in an environment that is centered upon dance-based entertainment...

 duo, consisting of Neil Tennant
Neil Tennant
Neil Francis Tennant is an English musician, singer and songwriter, who, with bandmate Chris Lowe, makes up the successful electronic dance music duo Pet Shop Boys.-Childhood:...

, who provides main vocals, keyboards and occasional guitar, and Chris Lowe
Chris Lowe
Chris Lowe is an English musician, who, with colleague Neil Tennant, makes up the pop duo Pet Shop Boys.-Childhood:...

 on keyboards.

One of the world's best-selling music artists, Pet Shop Boys have sold over 100 million records worldwide, and are listed as the most successful duo in UK music history by The Guinness Book of Records.
Encyclopedia
Pet Shop Boys are an English electronic dance music
Electronic dance music
Electronic dance music is electronic music produced primarily for the purposes of use within a nightclub setting, or in an environment that is centered upon dance-based entertainment...

 duo, consisting of Neil Tennant
Neil Tennant
Neil Francis Tennant is an English musician, singer and songwriter, who, with bandmate Chris Lowe, makes up the successful electronic dance music duo Pet Shop Boys.-Childhood:...

, who provides main vocals, keyboards and occasional guitar, and Chris Lowe
Chris Lowe
Chris Lowe is an English musician, who, with colleague Neil Tennant, makes up the pop duo Pet Shop Boys.-Childhood:...

 on keyboards.

One of the world's best-selling music artists, Pet Shop Boys have sold over 100 million records worldwide, and are listed as the most successful duo in UK music history by The Guinness Book of Records. Three-time BRIT Award winners and six-time Grammy
Grammy Award
A Grammy Award — or Grammy — is an accolade by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences of the United States to recognize outstanding achievement in the music industry...

 nominees, since 1986 they have achieved 42 Top 30 singles and 22 Top 10 hits in the UK Singles Chart
UK Singles Chart
The UK Singles Chart is compiled by The Official Charts Company on behalf of the British record-industry. The full chart contains the top selling 200 singles in the United Kingdom based upon combined record sales and download numbers, though some media outlets only list the Top 40 or the Top 75 ...

, including four Number Ones: "West End Girls
West End Girls
"West End Girls" is a song by British pop duo Pet Shop Boys. Written by Neil Tennant and Chris Lowe, the song was released twice as a single. It is a synthpop song, influenced by hip hop music. The lyrics focus on class, and inner-city pressure, and were inspired by T.S. Eliot's poem The Waste Land...

", "It's a Sin
It's a Sin
"It's a Sin" is a song recorded by Pet Shop Boys which reached number one on the UK Singles Chart for three weeks in 1987.-Background and writing:...

", "Always on My Mind" and "Heart
Heart (Pet Shop Boys song)
"Heart" is a song recorded by Pet Shop Boys which reached #1 on the UK Singles Chart for three weeks in April 1988 . This is also their last number 1 song to date...

".

At the 2009 BRIT Awards, Pet Shop Boys received an award for Outstanding Contribution to Music. The duo's latest studio album, Yes
Yes (Pet Shop Boys album)
Yes is the tenth studio album by English electronic duo Pet Shop Boys. The album was recorded throughout 2008 and is produced by Brian Higgins and his production team Xenomania. Xenomania also co-wrote three of the tracks. Guitarist Johnny Marr and string arranger Owen Pallett appear as well...

(continuing their tradition of single word titles) was released on 23 March 2009.

Formation and early years: 1981–84

Neil Tennant
Neil Tennant
Neil Francis Tennant is an English musician, singer and songwriter, who, with bandmate Chris Lowe, makes up the successful electronic dance music duo Pet Shop Boys.-Childhood:...

 and Chris Lowe
Chris Lowe
Chris Lowe is an English musician, who, with colleague Neil Tennant, makes up the pop duo Pet Shop Boys.-Childhood:...

 met in an electronics shop on Kings Road
Kings Road
King's Road or Kings Road, known popularly as The King's Road or The KR, is a major, well-known street stretching through Chelsea and Fulham, both in west London, England...

 in Chelsea, London
Chelsea, London
Chelsea is an area of West London, England, bounded to the south by the River Thames, where its frontage runs from Chelsea Bridge along the Chelsea Embankment, Cheyne Walk, Lots Road and Chelsea Harbour. Its eastern boundary was once defined by the River Westbourne, which is now in a pipe above...

 in August 1981. Recognising a mutual interest in dance music
Dance music
Dance music is music composed specifically to facilitate or accompany dancing. It can be either a whole musical piece or part of a larger musical arrangement...

 they began to work on material together, first in Tennant's flat in Chelsea and from 1982, in a small studio in Camden Town
Camden Town
-Economy:In recent years, entertainment-related businesses and a Holiday Inn have moved into the area. A number of retail and food chain outlets have replaced independent shops driven out by high rents and redevelopment. Restaurants have thrived, with the variety of culinary traditions found in...

. It was during these early years that several future hit songs were created, including "It's a Sin", "West End Girls", "Rent
Rent (song)
"Rent" is a 1987 single by the Pet Shop Boys. It was released in the UK by Parlophone on 12 October 1987. The lyrics deal with a financially one-sided relationship, i.e...

" and "Jealousy
Jealousy (Pet Shop Boys song)
"Jealousy" is a song originally written in 1982 by the Pet Shop Boys, recorded for their 1990 album Behaviour. In 1991, it was released in a slightly remixed form as a single, which appears on both Pet Shop Boys' greatest hits albums...

".

Starting out the two called themselves West End, because of their love of London's West End
West End of London
The West End of London is an area of central London, containing many of the city's major tourist attractions, shops, businesses, government buildings, and entertainment . Use of the term began in the early 19th century to describe fashionable areas to the west of Charing Cross...

, but later they came up with the name Pet Shop Boys, derived from friends of theirs who worked in a pet shop in Ealing.
Their big break came in August 1983, when Tennant was assigned by Smash Hits
Smash Hits
Smash Hits was a pop music based magazine, aimed at teenagers and young adults and originally published in the United Kingdom by EMAP. It ran from 1978 to 2006 and was issued fortnightly for most of that time...

to interview The Police
The Police
The Police were an English rock band formed in London in 1977. For the vast majority of their history, the band consisted of Sting , Andy Summers and Stewart Copeland...

 in New York. The duo were obsessed with a stream of Hi-NRG
Hi-NRG
Hi-NRG describes a form of high-tempo disco music as well as a genre of electronic dance music originating in the United States during the late 1970s...

 records, made by New York producer Bobby Orlando
Bobby Orlando
Robert Philip Orlando , also known as Bobby Orlando, is an American record producer, dance music artist, musician and songwriter.- Early life :...

, simply known as Bobby 'O'. According to Tennant: "I thought: well, if I've got to go and see The Police play, then I'm also going to have lunch with Bobby 'O'." They shared a cheeseburger and carrot cake, at a restaurant called the Apple Jack, on 19 August (two years to the day since Tennant and Lowe had met) and Orlando suggested making a record with the Pet Shop Boys, after hearing a demo tape
Demo (music)
A demo version or demo of a song is one recorded for reference rather than for release. A demo is a way for a musician to approximate their ideas on tape or disc, and provide an example of those ideas to record labels, producers or other artists...

 that Tennant had taken with him.

In April 1984, the Orlando-produced "West End Girls" was released, becoming a club hit in Los Angeles and San Francisco. On 2 November it was voted "Screamer of the Week" by listeners of Long Island
Long Island
Long Island is an island located in the southeast part of the U.S. state of New York, just east of Manhattan. Stretching northeast into the Atlantic Ocean, Long Island contains four counties, two of which are boroughs of New York City , and two of which are mainly suburban...

, New York radio station WLIR
WLIR
WLIR-FM is a Christian radio station as part of the WLIX Voice of Hope Radio Network. WLIR-FM broadcasts in the Hamptons-Riverhead area. Its transmitter is currently located near East Quogue, New York....

. It was a minor dance hit in Belgium, and France, but was only available in the United Kingdom as a 12"
12-inch single
The 12-inch single is a type of gramophone record that has wider groove spacing compared to other types of records. This allows for louder levels to be cut on the disc by the cutting engineer, which in turn gives a wider dynamic range, and thus better sound quality...

 import.

Please and remix album Disco: 1984–86

In March 1985, after long negotiations, Pet Shop Boys cut their contractual ties with Bobby 'O', with a settlement giving Bobby 'O' significant royalties
Royalties
Royalties are usage-based payments made by one party to another for the right to ongoing use of an asset, sometimes an intellectual property...

 for future sales. Hiring manager
Talent manager
A talent manager, also known as an artist manager or band manager, is an individual or company who guides the professional career of artists in the entertainment industry...

 Tom Watkins, they signed with the London-based Parlophone
Parlophone
Parlophone is a record label that was founded in Germany in 1896 by the Carl Lindström Company as Parlophon. The British branch was formed in 1923 as "Parlophone" which developed a reputation in the 1920s as a leading jazz label. It was acquired in 1927 by the Columbia Graphophone Company which...

 label
Record label
In the music industry, a record label is a brand and a trademark associated with the marketing of music recordings and music videos. Most commonly, a record label is the company that manages such brands and trademarks, coordinates the production, manufacture, distribution, marketing and promotion,...

. In April, Tennant left Smash Hits (where he had progressed to the position of deputy editor) and in July, a new single, "Opportunities (Let's Make Lots of Money)
Opportunities (Let's Make Lots of Money)
"Opportunities " is a song by UK synthpop duo Pet Shop Boys, released as a single in 1985 and then in 1986, gaining greater popularity in both the UK and U.S...

", was released, reaching number 116 in the UK. The B-side
A-side and B-side
A-side and B-side originally referred to the two sides of gramophone records on which singles were released beginning in the 1950s. The terms have come to refer to the types of song conventionally placed on each side of the record, with the A-side being the featured song , while the B-side, or...

 to this single, "In the Night", later resurfaced, in a longer remix
Remix
A remix is an alternative version of a recorded song, made from an original version. This term is also used for any alterations of media other than song ....

ed version, as the opening track to the duo's first remix album
Remix album
A remix album is an album consisting mostly of remixes or re-recorded versions of a music artists' earlier released material.One of the earliest remix albums was 1971's Aerial Pandemonium Ballet by Harry Nilsson, which was released by Nilsson after the successes of Everybody's Talkin and The Point!...

, Disco
Disco (album)
Disco is the second album by the UK electronic music group Pet Shop Boys. It was released by Parlophone on .Disco was not an original studio album, but rather a collection of remixes of tracks from their first album, Please, and its respective B-sides...

, in 1986. This version was also used as the theme for the UK television series The Clothes Show
The Clothes Show
The Clothes Show is a British television show about fashion that can currently be seen weeknights on Really. It was formerly broadcast on BBC One from 1986 to 2000.-BBC series :...

.
Unperturbed by the low chart position, the band returned to the studio in August to re-record "West End Girls" with producer Stephen Hague
Stephen Hague
Stephen Hague is an American music producer most active with various British acts in the 1980s. He was an influential figure in the synthpop movement.-Early career:...

. Released in October 1985, this new version initially entered the charts at a similarly low position, but began a slow rise so that, by January 1986, it achieved the top spot. It was subsequently number one in the United States, Canada, Finland, Hong Kong, Lebanon
Lebanon
Lebanon , officially the Republic of LebanonRepublic of Lebanon is the most common term used by Lebanese government agencies. The term Lebanese Republic, a literal translation of the official Arabic and French names that is not used in today's world. Arabic is the most common language spoken among...

, Israel, New Zealand and Norway and sold an estimated 1.5 million copies worldwide. It remains the most-heard Pet Shop Boys song to date.

After the success of "West End Girls", Pet Shop Boys released a follow-up single, "Love Comes Quickly
Love comes quickly
"Love Comes Quickly" is a song by UK synthpop duo Pet Shop Boys, released as the third single from their 1986 album Please, and the last of its singles to be released before the album itself. Although a Top 20 hit in the UK, and cited as one the band's own favourite songs, its chart performance was...

", on 24 February 1986. The single reached number 19 in the UK Singles Chart
UK Singles Chart
The UK Singles Chart is compiled by The Official Charts Company on behalf of the British record-industry. The full chart contains the top selling 200 singles in the United Kingdom based upon combined record sales and download numbers, though some media outlets only list the Top 40 or the Top 75 ...

 and was followed by their debut album, Please, on 24 March. In June 1986, the band announced a European tour; however, their plans for a theatrical extravaganza proved to be too expensive and the tour was cancelled. Please started Pet Shop Boys' penchant for choosing one-word album titles, which Neil Tennant has since stated is now a Pet Shop Boys "signature thing", akin to e.e. cummings' use of exclusively lower case letters. New versions of second single "Opportunities (Let's Make Lots of Money)
Opportunities (Let's Make Lots of Money)
"Opportunities " is a song by UK synthpop duo Pet Shop Boys, released as a single in 1985 and then in 1986, gaining greater popularity in both the UK and U.S...

" and album track "Suburbia
Suburbia (song)
"Suburbia" is a song by UK synthpop duo Pet Shop Boys. It was remixed and released as the fourth single from the album Please in 1986 and became the band's second UK Top 10 hit, peaking at #8.-Overview:...

" were also released in 1986, followed by a remix album
Remix album
A remix album is an album consisting mostly of remixes or re-recorded versions of a music artists' earlier released material.One of the earliest remix albums was 1971's Aerial Pandemonium Ballet by Harry Nilsson, which was released by Nilsson after the successes of Everybody's Talkin and The Point!...

, Disco
Disco (album)
Disco is the second album by the UK electronic music group Pet Shop Boys. It was released by Parlophone on .Disco was not an original studio album, but rather a collection of remixes of tracks from their first album, Please, and its respective B-sides...

, in November.

Actually and It Couldn't Happen Here: 1987–88

1987 started with Pet Shop Boys receiving both BRIT Awards
Brit Awards
The Brit Awards are the British Phonographic Industry's annual pop music awards. The name was originally a shortened form of "British", "Britain" or "Britannia", but subsequently became a backronym for British Record Industry Trust...

 and Ivor Novello Awards
Ivor Novello Awards
The Ivor Novello Awards, named after the Cardiff born entertainer Ivor Novello, are awards for songwriting and composing. They are presented annually in London by the British Academy of Songwriters, Composers and Authors and were first introduced in 1955.Nicknamed The Ivors, the awards take place...

 for "West End Girls". Later, on 15 June, they released what became their second number one single, "It's a Sin". The single caused some controversy: Tennant's school, St. Cuthbert's Grammar School, in Newcastle upon Tyne
Newcastle upon Tyne
Newcastle upon Tyne is a city and metropolitan borough of Tyne and Wear, in North East England. Historically a part of Northumberland, it is situated on the north bank of the River Tyne...

, chastised him in the press
News media
The news media are those elements of the mass media that focus on delivering news to the general public or a target public.These include print media , broadcast news , and more recently the Internet .-Etymology:A medium is a carrier of something...

, while Jonathan King
Jonathan King
Jonathan King is an English singer, songwriter, impresario and record producer. He is also the author of three novels, Bible Two and The Booker Prize Winner , and Beware the Monkey Man , and an autobiography, 65 My Life So Far .King first came to prominence as an...

 accused them of plagiarising the Cat Stevens
Cat Stevens
Yusuf Islam , commonly known by his former stage name Cat Stevens, is an English singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, educator, philanthropist, and prominent convert to Islam....

 song "Wild World
Wild World
"Wild World" is a song written and recorded by English singer-songwriter Cat Stevens. It first appeared on his fourth album, Tea for the Tillerman, recorded and released in 1970 and, continuing the change in Stevens' sound, after leaving Deram Records and signing with Island Records...

". Pet Shop Boys later sued King and won damages, which were donated to charity. The video
Music video
A music video or song video is a short film integrating a song and imagery, produced for promotional or artistic purposes. Modern music videos are primarily made and used as a marketing device intended to promote the sale of music recordings...

 to "It's a Sin" also saw their first collaboration with director Derek Jarman
Derek Jarman
Michael Derek Elworthy Jarman was an English film director, stage designer, diarist, artist, gardener and author.-Life:...

.
The continued success of "It's a Sin" was followed by the release of "What Have I Done to Deserve This?" on 10 August. Co-written with Allee Willis
Allee Willis
Allee Willis is an American songwriter, artist, set designer, multimedia artist, writer, collector and director.-Overview:...

 and also featuring Dusty Springfield
Dusty Springfield
Mary Isobel Catherine Bernadette O'BrienSources use both Isabel and Isobel as the spelling of her second name. OBE , known professionally as Dusty Springfield and dubbed The White Queen of Soul, was a British pop singer whose career extended from the late 1950s to the 1990s...

 on vocals, the single reached number two on the UK Singles Chart
UK Singles Chart
The UK Singles Chart is compiled by The Official Charts Company on behalf of the British record-industry. The full chart contains the top selling 200 singles in the United Kingdom based upon combined record sales and download numbers, though some media outlets only list the Top 40 or the Top 75 ...

 and the U.S. Billboard Hot 100
Billboard Hot 100
The Billboard Hot 100 is the United States music industry standard singles popularity chart issued weekly by Billboard magazine. Chart rankings are based on radio play and sales; the tracking-week for sales begins on Monday and ends on Sunday, while the radio play tracking-week runs from Wednesday...

 chart. Although the duo had wanted to release this track on their debut album already, they had been unable to track down Springfield and were reluctant to record it with any other female singer, despite their record company's suggestions. Springfield's manager finally contacted them in 1986, following the release of Please, and towards the end of that year, she travelled to London to record "What Have I Done to Deserve This?" with them. It was the first track to be recorded for the duo's second album. Pet Shop Boys had been told that Springfield was "difficult" to work with and even that she could no longer sing; however, her performance on the track put any such concerns to rest and they began a collaboration with her, which lasted until the end of the decade. Included on their then forthcoming second album Actually
Actually (album)
In 2006, Q magazine placed the album at #22 in its list of "40 Best Albums of the '80s".-Track listing:# "One More Chance"  – 5:30...

, the song became a massive worldwide hit and resurrected Springfield's career, leading to her 1990 album, Reputation
Reputation (album)
Reputation is the thirteenth studio album by British singer Dusty Springfield, and twelfth released. Issued on the Parlophone Records label in the UK and the rest of Europe in June 1990, Reputation was not only Springfield's first studio album in eight years at the time but in fact also the first...

, on which Pet Shop Boys were major contributing producers
Record producer
A record producer is an individual working within the music industry, whose job is to oversee and manage the recording of an artist's music...

. This duet was also the start of a series of collaborations with high profile musicians, going on throughout the band's career.

Also in August 1987, Pet Shop Boys appeared on Love Me Tender, a UK television programme, on ITV
ITV
ITV is the major commercial public service TV network in the United Kingdom. Launched in 1955 under the auspices of the Independent Television Authority to provide competition to the BBC, it is also the oldest commercial network in the UK...

, commemorating the tenth anniversary of Elvis Presley
Elvis Presley
Elvis Aaron Presley was one of the most popular American singers of the 20th century. A cultural icon, he is widely known by the single name Elvis. He is often referred to as the "King of Rock and Roll" or simply "the King"....

's death. They were asked to perform one of their favourite Elvis tracks and they narrowed it down to two options, "Baby Let's Play House" and "Always on My Mind
Always on My Mind
"Always on My Mind" is an American country music song by Johnny Christopher, Mark James and Wayne Carson, originally recorded by Brenda Lee in 1972.Allmusic lists over 300 recorded releases of the song in versions by dozens of performers...

", eventually settling on the latter. Their Presley cover would later be re-released in a 12"
12-inch single
The 12-inch single is a type of gramophone record that has wider groove spacing compared to other types of records. This allows for louder levels to be cut on the disc by the cutting engineer, which in turn gives a wider dynamic range, and thus better sound quality...

 version, consisting of a medley
Medley (music)
In music, a medley is a piece composed from parts of existing pieces, usually three, played one after another, sometimes overlapping. They are common in popular music, and most medleys are songs rather than instrumental. A medley which is a remixed series is called a megamix, often done with tracks...

, along with an acid house
Acid house
Acid house is a sub-genre of house music that emphasizes a repetitive, hypnotic and trance-like style, often with samples or spoken lines rather than sung lyrics. Acid house's core electronic squelch sounds were developed around the mid-1980s, particularly by DJs from Chicago who experimented with...

 track by the duo, entitled "In My House". This extended version, consistently called "Always on My Mind"/"In My House", would later be included on Pet Shop Boys' 1988 album, Introspective, with the 12" medley attached to the vinyl edition
Gramophone record
A gramophone record, commonly known as a phonograph record , vinyl record , or colloquially, a record, is an analog sound storage medium consisting of a flat disc with an inscribed, modulated spiral groove...

 of their Actually album and only marketed in the United States in such double release. 7 September 1987 indeed saw the release of the duo's second studio album, Actually, followed by the single "Rent
Rent (song)
"Rent" is a 1987 single by the Pet Shop Boys. It was released in the UK by Parlophone on 12 October 1987. The lyrics deal with a financially one-sided relationship, i.e...

" in October, which reached number 8 in the UK. The final song on the album, "King's Cross
King's Cross (song)
"King's Cross" is a Pet Shop Boys song, written by Chris Lowe and Neil Tennant and is a track on their 1987 album Actually. It was covered and released as a single in 2007 by Tracey Thorn.-Pet Shop Boys version and the King's Cross Fire:...

", was revealed to have a strange prescience, when there was a fatal fire at the London Underground
London Underground
The London Underground is a rapid transit system serving a large part of Greater London and some parts of Buckinghamshire, Hertfordshire and Essex in England...

 section of the station in November of that year (part of the lyrics
Lyrics
Lyrics are a set of words that make up a song. The writer of lyrics is a lyricist or lyrist. The meaning of lyrics can either be explicit or implicit. Some lyrics are abstract, almost unintelligible, and, in such cases, their explication emphasizes form, articulation, meter, and symmetry of...

 read: "Dead and wounded on either side/You know it's only a matter of time"). The Sun
The Sun (newspaper)
The Sun is a daily national tabloid newspaper published in the United Kingdom and owned by News Corporation. Sister editions are published in Glasgow and Dublin...

newspaper in the UK subsequently tried to get the track released as a charity single
Charity record
A charity record is a release of a song for a specific charitable cause. Some of the earliest charity records came from the Music for UNICEF Concert, with ABBA's Chiquitita and the Bee Gees' Too Much Heaven among them released as singles, with all the royalties going to UNICEF...

, but Pet Shop Boys would not allow this.

Towards the end of 1987, Pet Shop Boys started work on an hour-long film that would incorporate the songs from Actually. Working with director Jack Bond
Jack Bond (director)
Jack Bond is a British film producer and director. He is best known for his work for The South Bank Show and his creative partnership with the British writer, actor and director Jane Arden between 1965 and 1979....

, the short film grew into a full-scale movie, It Couldn't Happen Here
It Couldn't Happen Here
It Couldn't Happen Here is a 1988 musical film starring the British pop duo Pet Shop Boys and based around their music. It was originally conceived as an hour-long video based around their album Actually, but it turned into a surreal full-scale feature film directed by Jack Bond and co-starring...

, starring Barbara Windsor
Barbara Windsor
Barbara Ann Windsor, MBE , better known by her stage name Barbara Windsor, is an English actress. Her best known roles are in the Carry On films and as Peggy Mitchell in the BBC soap opera EastEnders....

, Joss Ackland
Joss Ackland
Sidney Edmond Jocelyn Ackland CBE , known as Joss Ackland, is an English actor who has appeared in more than 130 films and numerous television roles.-Early life:...

 and Gareth Hunt
Gareth Hunt
Alan Leonard Hunt was an English actor, known as Gareth Hunt, best remembered for playing the footman Frederick Norton in Upstairs, Downstairs and Mike Gambit in The New Avengers.-Early life:...

. The film was eventually released in 1988 to mixed reviews. Footage from the film was also used for the music video to "Always on My Mind", now released as a single on 30 November; it became both the duo's third number one single in the UK and the Christmas number one single for 1987, beating "Fairytale of New York
Fairytale of New York
"Fairytale of New York" is a song by the Irish rock group The Pogues, released in 1987 and featuring the British singer Kirsty MacColl. The song is an Irish folk style ballad, written by Jem Finer and Shane MacGowan, and featured on The Pogues' album If I Should Fall from Grace with God...

" by The Pogues
The Pogues
The Pogues are a Celtic punk band, formed in 1982 and fronted by Shane MacGowan. The band reached international prominence in the 1980s and early 1990s. MacGowan left the band in 1991 due to drinking problems but the band continued first with Joe Strummer and then with Spider Stacy on vocals before...

. In November 2004, The Daily Telegraph
The Daily Telegraph
The Daily Telegraph is a daily morning broadsheet newspaper distributed throughout the United Kingdom and internationally. The newspaper was founded by Arthur B...

newspaper placed Pet Shop Boys version of "Always on My Mind" at number two in a list of the fifty greatest cover versions of all time.

1988 started with another collaboration. Patsy Kensit
Patsy Kensit
Patricia Jude Francis "Patsy" Kensit is an English actress, singer, model and former child star, known for her television and film appearances. Her films include Lethal Weapon 2 and she has been married to rock stars Jim Kerr and Liam Gallagher, as well as herself fronting the band Eighth Wonder...

's band, Eighth Wonder
Eighth Wonder
Eighth Wonder were a British pop band in the 1980s. They formed in 1983 and enjoyed major success in Japan and Italy between 1985 and 1987, before having hit singles in the UK and across Europe in 1988.-Early years:...

, had the song "I'm Not Scared
I'm Not Scared (song)
"I'm Not Scared" is a 1988 song recorded by British pop band Eighth Wonder. It was the first single from the album Fearless and group's fifth single, and was released in 1988. It achieved success in France, Italy, Switzerland, Germany and UK, where it was a top ten hit. Written by the Pet Shop...

" written and produced for them by Pet Shop Boys. The song became her biggest hit single and Pet Shop Boys included their own extended version of the track on their Introspective album. March 1988 saw the duo achieve their fourth UK number one single (and their last to date), with a remixed edit of "Heart
Heart (Pet Shop Boys song)
"Heart" is a song recorded by Pet Shop Boys which reached #1 on the UK Singles Chart for three weeks in April 1988 . This is also their last number 1 song to date...

", different from the album version. This single version would be included on their first and third greatest hits albums, Discography: The Complete Singles Collection and Ultimate
Ultimate (Pet Shop Boys album)
Ultimate is a greatest hits compilation album by UK electronic music band Pet Shop Boys. It is their third greatest hits album, released on 1 November 2010 by their long-time label Parlophone. The album contains 18 previously-released singles, in chronological order, and one new song...

, whereas the album version would be used for their second retrospective, the double PopArt: Pet Shop Boys – The Hits. The video
Music video
A music video or song video is a short film integrating a song and imagery, produced for promotional or artistic purposes. Modern music videos are primarily made and used as a marketing device intended to promote the sale of music recordings...

 to the single, directed by Jack Bond, was a retelling of the Dracula
Dracula
Dracula is an 1897 novel by Irish author Bram Stoker.Famous for introducing the character of the vampire Count Dracula, the novel tells the story of Dracula's attempt to relocate from Transylvania to England, and the battle between Dracula and a small group of men and women led by Professor...

story, starring Ian McKellen
Ian McKellen
Sir Ian Murray McKellen, CH, CBE is an English actor. He has received a Tony Award, two Academy Award nominations, and five Emmy Award nominations. His work has spanned genres from Shakespearean and modern theatre to popular fantasy and science fiction...

 as the vampire
Vampire
Vampires are mythological or folkloric beings who subsist by feeding on the life essence of living creatures, regardless of whether they are undead or a living person...

 who steals Neil Tennant's fictitious wife. It was seen to be extremely ironic
Irony
Irony is a rhetorical device, literary technique, or situation in which there is a sharp incongruity or discordance that goes beyond the simple and evident intention of words or actions...

, since McKellen was a well-known gay figure at the time (he came out
Coming out
Coming out is a figure of speech for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people's disclosure of their sexual orientation and/or gender identity....

 in 1988).

Introspective, Results, Behaviour, Performance tour and Discography: 1988–92

In the 1996 BBC Radio 1
BBC Radio 1
BBC Radio 1 is a British national radio station operated by the British Broadcasting Corporation which also broadcasts internationally, specialising in current popular music and chart hits throughout the day. Radio 1 provides alternative genres after 7:00pm including electronic dance, hip hop, rock...

 documentary About Pet Shop Boys, Neil Tennant noted that their "Imperial Phase" ended in 1988. On 12 September 1988, Pet Shop Boys released a brand new single, "Domino Dancing
Domino Dancing
"Domino Dancing" is a song recorded by the British synthpop duo Pet Shop Boys which reached #7 on the UK Singles Chart. It was released as the lead single from their 1988 album, Introspective.-Song:...

" and in the documentary Neil recounts his disappointment when hearing the news that the single had reached number 7 in the UK Singles Chart
UK Singles Chart
The UK Singles Chart is compiled by The Official Charts Company on behalf of the British record-industry. The full chart contains the top selling 200 singles in the United Kingdom based upon combined record sales and download numbers, though some media outlets only list the Top 40 or the Top 75 ...

. He felt that their major success was now over and that it was going to be a challenge to maintain their level of success in the future.

The duo's third studio album, Introspective
Introspective (album)
Introspective is the third studio album by the English electronic music group Pet Shop Boys. It was first released in 1988 and is the Pet Shop Boys' second-best-selling album, selling over 4.5 million copies worldwide...

, was released on . Unusually, this was a six-track album of previously unheard remixes and new tracks in extended form. It was followed by the Trevor Horn
Trevor Horn
Trevor Charles Horn CBE is an English pop music record producer, songwriter, musician and singer. He was born in Houghton-le-Spring in north-east England....

-produced top-five single "Left to My Own Devices
Left to My Own Devices
"Left to My Own Devices" is a song recorded by Pet Shop Boys, released as the second single from their third studio album, Introspective. It was also the first track of the album. It is their 9th best selling-hit....

", and a cover version of the Sterling Void single "It's Alright
It's Alright (Pet Shop Boys song)
"It's Alright" is the 13th single from Pet Shop Boys and was released in the UK by Parlophone Records on 26 June 1989.The lyrics list a wide variety of serious political issues in the headlines at the time , and then offers the positive message of the title—that on its "timeless wavelength", "music...

", in 1989. 1989 also saw the start of Pet Shop Boys' first tour ever, in which they performed in Hong Kong, Japan, and Britain. The tour followed the ideas of the extravaganza that could not have been afforded earlier in their careers. Derek Jarman
Derek Jarman
Michael Derek Elworthy Jarman was an English film director, stage designer, diarist, artist, gardener and author.-Life:...

 returned to direct the performance and he provided several films that were projected during the shows.

On 24 September 1990, a new single, "So Hard
So Hard
"So Hard" is a song by the British pop group Pet Shop Boys and was the first single lifted from the 1990 album Behaviour. It peaked at #4 in the UK...

", was released, reaching #4 in the UK and Pet Shop Boys' fourth studio album followed, on 22 October 1990. Entitled Behaviour, it was recorded in Munich
Munich
Munich The city's motto is "" . Before 2006, it was "Weltstadt mit Herz" . Its native name, , is derived from the Old High German Munichen, meaning "by the monks' place". The city's name derives from the monks of the Benedictine order who founded the city; hence the monk depicted on the city's coat...

, with producer Harold Faltermeyer
Harold Faltermeyer
Harold Faltermeyer is a German musician, keyboardist, composer and record producer.He is recognized as one of the composers/producers who best captured the zeitgeist of 1980s synth-pop in film scores...

. The album was not intended to reflect a dramatic change in mood from their earlier albums; however, it is noticeably subdued. It included the fan-favourite "Being Boring
Being Boring
"Being Boring" is a single by the British pop group Pet Shop Boys.As the second single from the 1990 album Behaviour, after "So Hard" which was released before the album, "Being Boring" was not particularly successful upon release, only reaching number twenty in the UK Singles Chart and being the...

", the second single from the album, which only reached #20 in the UK Singles Chart
UK Singles Chart
The UK Singles Chart is compiled by The Official Charts Company on behalf of the British record-industry. The full chart contains the top selling 200 singles in the United Kingdom based upon combined record sales and download numbers, though some media outlets only list the Top 40 or the Top 75 ...

, their lowest placing at the time. The song was inspired by a quote by Zelda Fitzgerald
Zelda Fitzgerald
Zelda Sayre Fitzgerald , born Zelda Sayre in Montgomery, Alabama, was an American novelist and the wife of writer F. Scott Fitzgerald. She was an icon of the 1920s—dubbed by her husband "the first American Flapper"...

: "...she refused to be bored chiefly because she wasn't boring", and was widely thought to be a commentary on the AIDS epidemic. The music video was directed by filmmaker Bruce Weber
Bruce Weber (photographer)
Bruce Weber is an American fashion photographer and occasional filmmaker. He is most widely known for his ad campaigns for Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren, Pirelli, Abercrombie & Fitch, Revlon, and Gianni Versace, as well as his work for Vogue, GQ, Vanity Fair, Elle, Life, Interview, and Rolling Stone...

. By this time, the duo had also parted ways with manager Tom Watkins, replacing him with Jill Carrington, who had previously been marketing director at Polydor
Polydor Records
Polydor is a record label owned by Universal Music Group, headquartered in the United Kingdom.-Beginnings:Polydor was originally an independent branch of the Deutsche Grammophon Gesellschaft. Its name was first used as an export label in 1924, the British and German branches of the Gramophone...

.

In March 1991, a cover of U2
U2
U2 are an Irish rock band from Dublin. Formed in 1976, the group consists of Bono , The Edge , Adam Clayton , and Larry Mullen, Jr. . U2's early sound was rooted in post-punk but eventually grew to incorporate influences from many genres of popular music...

's "Where the Streets Have No Name
Where the Streets Have No Name
"Where the Streets Have No Name" is a song by rock band U2. It is the opening track from their 1987 album The Joshua Tree and was released as the album's third single in August 1987. The song's hook is a repeating guitar arpeggio using a delay effect, played during the song's introduction and...

" as a medley with "Can't Take My Eyes Off You
Can't Take My Eyes off You
"Can't Take My Eyes Off You" is a 1967 single by Frankie Valli. The song was among Valli's biggest hits, reaching #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 and earning a gold record. It was Valli's biggest "solo" hit until he hit #1 in 1975 with "My Eyes Adored You"...

", the 1960s pop song by Frankie Valli
Frankie Valli
Frankie Valli is an American musician, most famous as frontman of The Four Seasons. He is well-known for his unusually powerful falsetto singing voice...

/The Four Seasons, was released as a double A-sided single with a remix of the album track "How Can You Expect to Be Taken Seriously?
How Can You Expect to Be Taken Seriously?
"How Can You Expect to Be Taken Seriously?" is, together with double A-side "Where the Streets Have No Name ", the third single from Pet Shop Boys' album Behaviour. It was released in the UK as a double A-side by Parlophone Records on 11 March 1991. It was subsequently released as a single in its...

" by Brothers in Rhythm
Brothers in Rhythm
Brothers In Rhythm is a house music duo consisting of producers / remixers and DJs Steve Anderson and Dave Seaman. As a duo and individually, they have remixed and/or produced tracks by Lulu, M People, Secret Life, Janet Jackson, Michael Jackson, New Order, Pet Shop Boys, Kylie Minogue, Garbage,...

. This was followed by the duo's first world tour. Named Performance, the tour kicked off in Tokyo, on 11 March 1991. The tour also visited the United States, Canada, France, Belgium, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Czechoslovakia
Czechoslovakia
Czechoslovakia or Czecho-Slovakia was a sovereign state in Central Europe which existed from October 1918, when it declared its independence from the Austro-Hungarian Empire, until 1992...

, Austria, Hungary
Hungary
Hungary , officially the Republic of Hungary , is a landlocked country in Central Europe. It is situated in the Carpathian Basin and is bordered by Slovakia to the north, Ukraine and Romania to the east, Serbia and Croatia to the south, Slovenia to the southwest and Austria to the west. The...

, Yugoslavia
Yugoslavia
Yugoslavia refers to three political entities that existed successively on the western part of the Balkans during most of the 20th century....

, Switzerland, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, Ireland, and the United Kingdom. The shows were designed by David Alden and David Fielding, who had designed several sets for the London Opera House.

Before taking a break in 1992, in 1991 the Pet Shop Boys released an 18-track compilation called Discography, which included all of their single releases up until then, two new singles—"DJ Culture
DJ Culture
"DJ Culture" is the first single released by British electronic music group Pet Shop Boys from their singles collection album Discography: The Complete Singles Collection. The single peaked at #13 on the UK Singles Chart in 1991...

" and "Was It Worth It?"—and only omitted "How Can You Expect to Be Taken Seriously?" (although it did appear on the video companion Videography). While "DJ Culture" had some success, "Was It Worth It?" became the duo's very first single to miss the UK Top 20 since their two Bobby 'O' debut singles.

During this period, Pet Shop Boys continued to collaborate with many high-profile musicians. They worked again with Dusty Springfield
Dusty Springfield
Mary Isobel Catherine Bernadette O'BrienSources use both Isabel and Isobel as the spelling of her second name. OBE , known professionally as Dusty Springfield and dubbed The White Queen of Soul, was a British pop singer whose career extended from the late 1950s to the 1990s...

, on the singles "Nothing Has Been Proved
Nothing Has Been Proved
"Nothing Has Been Proved" is a song and a single release by British singer Dusty Springfield, produced by the Pet Shop Boys. The song was the second collaboration between Springfield and Pet Shop Boys, following their UK #2 and US #2 hit duet "What Have I Done to Deserve This?" in 1987...

" (which was a song written for their soundtrack for the film Scandal about the Profumo political scandal
Profumo Affair
The Profumo Affair was a 1963 British political scandal named after John Profumo, Secretary of State for War. His affair with Christine Keeler, the reputed mistress of an alleged Russian spy, followed by lying in the House of Commons when he was questioned about it, forced the resignation of...

 in Britain
Great Britain
Great Britain or Britain is an island situated to the northwest of Continental Europe. It is the ninth largest island in the world, and the largest European island, as well as the largest of the British Isles...

) and "In Private
In Private
"In Private" was the third single in a row to be a charting success for British singer Dusty Springfield, after nearly two decades of little chart success. Both "In Private" and Springfield's previous single, "Nothing Has Been Proved" were produced by Pet Shop Boys, who helped return Springfield to...

". The duo later went on to produce half of the tracks on her 1990 solo
Solo album
A solo album, in popular music, is an album headlined by a current or former member of a band. A solo album may feature simply one person performing all instruments, but typically features the work of other collaborators; rather, it may be made with different collaborators than the artist is...

 Reputation
Reputation (album)
Reputation is the thirteenth studio album by British singer Dusty Springfield, and twelfth released. Issued on the Parlophone Records label in the UK and the rest of Europe in June 1990, Reputation was not only Springfield's first studio album in eight years at the time but in fact also the first...

album. Pet Shop Boys were also asked to write and produce an album for Liza Minnelli
Liza Minnelli
Liza May Minnelli is an American actress and singer. She is the daughter of singer and actress Judy Garland and film director Vincente Minnelli....

, in 1989. The album, Results, generated four singles, including the hit single "Losing My Mind", a cover version of the Stephen Sondheim
Stephen Sondheim
Stephen Joshua Sondheim is an American composer and lyricist for stage and film. He is the winner of an Academy Award, multiple Tony Awards including the Special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre, multiple Grammy Awards, a Pulitzer Prize and the Laurence Olivier Award...

 song from the 1971 Broadway musical "Follies". The duo's own demo of this appeared on their "Jealousy
Jealousy (Pet Shop Boys song)
"Jealousy" is a song originally written in 1982 by the Pet Shop Boys, recorded for their 1990 album Behaviour. In 1991, it was released in a slightly remixed form as a single, which appears on both Pet Shop Boys' greatest hits albums...

" single as a B-side
A-side and B-side
A-side and B-side originally referred to the two sides of gramophone records on which singles were released beginning in the 1950s. The terms have come to refer to the types of song conventionally placed on each side of the record, with the A-side being the featured song , while the B-side, or...

.

Neil Tennant worked with Bernard Sumner
Bernard Sumner
Bernard Sumner , also known as Bernard Dickin, Bernard Dicken and Bernard Albrecht is an English singer-songwriter, guitarist, keyboard player and producer....

 and Johnny Marr
Johnny Marr
Johnny Marr is an English musician and songwriter. Marr rose to fame in the 1980s as the guitarist in The Smiths, with whom he formed a prolific songwriting partnership with Morrissey. Marr has been a member of Electronic, The The, and Modest Mouse...

 on their first album as Electronic
Electronic (band)
-Albums:-Singles:-Music videos:-External links:* *...

, whose first single, "Getting Away with It", co-written and co-produced by Tennant himself, was released on 4 December 1989. Later, in 1991, Lowe also contributed to the Electronic
Electronic (band)
-Albums:-Singles:-Music videos:-External links:* *...

 project, contributing the chord sequence to "The Patience of a Saint" on their 1991 album. Finally; in 1992, Tennant sang lead vocals on the non-album single "Disappointed", which was featured on the soundtrack to the movie Cool World
Cool World
Cool World is a 1992 American live-action/animated film directed by Ralph Bakshi, and starring Kim Basinger, Gabriel Byrne, and Brad Pitt. It tells the story of a cartoonist who finds himself in the animated world he created, and is seduced by one of his characters, a comic strip vamp who wants to...

.

In addition, a remix of "So Hard", by notorious electronic music
Electronic music
Electronic music is music that employs electronic musical instruments and electronic music technology in its production. In general a distinction can be made between sound produced using electromechanical means and that produced using electronic technology. Examples of electromechanical sound...

 duo The KLF
The KLF
The KLF were one of the seminal bands of the British acid house movement during the late 1980s and early 1990s....

, released as a separate single, led to Tennant re-recording
Recording
Recording is the process of capturing data or translating information to a recording format stored on some storage medium, which is often referred to as a record or, if an auditory medium, a recording....

 his vocals for the song entirely.

Pet Shop Boys set up the Spaghetti Records
Spaghetti Records
Spaghetti Records is a record label launched in September 1991 by Pet Shop Boys.The first single to be released on Spaghetti was by a 21-year-old Scottish singer, synthesizer player and songwriter called David Cicero. The single was called "Heaven Must Have Sent You Back to Me"...

 label
Record label
In the music industry, a record label is a brand and a trademark associated with the marketing of music recordings and music videos. Most commonly, a record label is the company that manages such brands and trademarks, coordinates the production, manufacture, distribution, marketing and promotion,...

 in 1991. Their most successful release was the soundtrack to the 1992 film The Crying Game
The Crying Game
The Crying Game is a 1992 psychological thriller drama film written and directed by Neil Jordan. The film explores themes of race, gender, nationality, and sexuality against the backdrop of the Irish Troubles...

, which featured Boy George
Boy George
Boy George is a British singer-songwriter who was part of the English New Romantic movement which emerged in the early 1980s. He helped give androgyny an international stage with the success of Culture Club during the 1980s. His music is often classified as blue-eyed soul, which is influenced by...

 performing the title song "The Crying Game
The Crying Game (song)
"The Crying Game" is a song written by Geoff Stephens. It was first released by Dave Berry in July 1964. It reached #5 on the UK Singles Chart. Then-unknown session guitarist Jimmy Page and Big Jim Sullivan played guitar in this song.-Song history:...

". The song was produced by Pet Shop Boys and featured Tennant on backing vocals. Other artists on the label included Scottish singer Cicero
David Cicero (singer)
David John Cicero is an American singer and keyboardist who was signed in 1989 to Spaghetti Records, a record label owned by Pet Shop Boys...

, The Ignorants, and Masterboy
Masterboy
Masterboy is a German eurodance group with notable success in Europe, Asia, Oceania and South America in the mid-1990s. They are one of the most representative group for 90's "high energy" eurodance phenomenon, when this genre crossed over from dance clubs to the pop music arena...

.

In 1992 Pet Shop Boys were the subjects of a South Bank Show
The South Bank Show
The South Bank Show was a television arts magazine show, originally made by London Weekend Television , presented by Melvyn Bragg, broadcast on ITV and seen in over 60 countries worldwide — including Australia, New Zealand, the Netherlands, Sweden and the United States...

documentary on ITV. This included interviews with Neil and Chris, and contributions from Liza Minnelli, Eric Watson
Eric Watson (photographer)
Eric Watson is an English photographer.Watson moved to London in 1974 to study fine art at Hornsey Art College, where his contemporaries included Adam Ant and became an assistant to the photographer Red Saunders in 1980 and soon branched out as a photographer in his own right, primarily in the pop...

 (photographer and video director), Simon Frith
Simon Frith
Simon Frith is a British sociologist, and former rock critic, who specializes in popular music culture. He is currently Tovey Chair of Music at University of Edinburgh.-Background:...

 (music critic), David Alden and David Fielding.

Very, Disco 2, Discovery tour and Alternative: 1993–95

In June 1993, Pet Shop Boys infamously re-invented their image and made a strong return to the UK Singles Chart
UK Singles Chart
The UK Singles Chart is compiled by The Official Charts Company on behalf of the British record-industry. The full chart contains the top selling 200 singles in the United Kingdom based upon combined record sales and download numbers, though some media outlets only list the Top 40 or the Top 75 ...

 with "Can You Forgive Her?
Can You Forgive Her? (song)
"Can You Forgive Her?" is a song by Pet Shop Boys, recorded for their 1993 album Very.Starting with a huge crash of synth and trumpet, it remains one of the more dramatic songs recorded by the duo—reminiscent of early hits like "It's a Sin". It was released as Verys lead single, almost four...

". Taking its title from the Anthony Trollope
Anthony Trollope
Anthony Trollope was one of the most successful, prolific and respected English novelists of the Victorian era. Some of his best-loved works, collectively known as the Chronicles of Barsetshire, revolve around the imaginary county of Barsetshire...

 novel of the same name
Can You Forgive Her?
Can You Forgive Her? is a novel by Anthony Trollope, first published in serial form in 1864 and 1865. It is the first of six novels in the "Palliser" series....

, the single reached number 7 on the UK Singles Chart, while its iconic music video featured the duo in orange body suits and tall dunce cap
Dunce cap
A dunce cap, also variously known as a dunce hat, dunce's cap, or dunce's hat, is a pointed hat. In popular culture, it is typically made of paper and often marked with a D or the word "dunce", and given to schoolchildren to wear as punishment by public humiliation for misbehavior and, as the name...

s, in a world of computer-generated imagery
Computer-generated imagery
Computer-generated imagery is the application of the field of computer graphics or, more specifically, 3D computer graphics to special effects in art, video games, films, television programs, commercials, simulators and simulation generally, and printed media...

. The theme was continued with the follow-up single, often considered as their signature song, a cover of the Village People
Village People
Village People is a concept disco group that formed in the United States in 1977, well known for their on-stage costumes depicting American cultural stereotypes, as well as their catchy tunes and suggestive lyrics....

 single "Go West
Go West (song)
"Go West" is a song by the 1970s disco group Village People. The song eventually found greater success when it was covered in 1993 by the synthpop duo Pet Shop Boys.-Village People version:...

", which reached number 2 in the UK, with another computer-generated music video, this time inspired by the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

. The tune was adopted into a football chant at Arsenal Football Club
Arsenal F.C.
Arsenal Football Club is a professional English Premier League football club based in North London. One of the most successful clubs in English football, it has won 13 First Division and Premier League titles and 10 FA Cups...

 (whom Chris Lowe supports) and is heard at grounds throughout Europe to this day.

The duo's fifth studio album, Very, followed on 27 September and is the only Pet Shop Boys album to ever reach number one on the UK Albums Chart
UK Albums Chart
The UK Albums Chart is a list of albums ranked by physical and digital sales in the United Kingdom. It is compiled every week by The Official Charts Company and broadcast on a Sunday on BBC Radio 1 , and published in Music Week magazine and on the OCC website .To qualify for the UK albums chart...

. It was produced by Pet Shop Boys and mixed with additional production by Stephen Hague
Stephen Hague
Stephen Hague is an American music producer most active with various British acts in the 1980s. He was an influential figure in the synthpop movement.-Early career:...

, who had produced their first album and had subsequently produced records by OMD
Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark
Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark are a synthpop group whose founding members are originally from the Wirral Peninsula, England...

, New Order
New Order
New Order are an English rock band formed in 1980 by Bernard Sumner , Peter Hook and Stephen Morris...

 and Erasure
Erasure
Erasure are an English synthpop duo, consisting of songwriter and keyboardist Vince Clarke and singer Andy Bell. Erasure entered the music scene in 1985 with their debut single "Who Needs Love Like That"...

. The other singles from Very, "I Wouldn't Normally Do This Kind of Thing
I wouldn't normally do this kind of thing
"I Wouldn't Normally Do This Kind of Thing" is the third single from Pet Shop Boys' fifth album Very. It was released in the UK by Parlophone Records on where it eventually reached #13 in the chart. It reached #2 in the US Club chart where it was released in...

", "Liberation
Liberation (song)
"Liberation" is the fourth single released by UK electronic music group Pet Shop Boys from their album Very. It peaked at #14 on the UK Singles Chart, making it the lowest-charting single in the UK from Very....

" and "Yesterday, When I Was Mad
Yesterday, When I Was Mad
"Yesterday, When I Was Mad" is a single by UK Electronic music group Pet Shop Boys released as the fifth and last single from their 1993 album Very. The single peaked at #13 on the UK Singles Chart and #4 on the U.S. Billboard Hot Dance Club Play charts. It is reputedly a parody of the bland...

", continued the theme of CGI
Computer-generated imagery
Computer-generated imagery is the application of the field of computer graphics or, more specifically, 3D computer graphics to special effects in art, video games, films, television programs, commercials, simulators and simulation generally, and printed media...

 videos, peaking with the "Liberation" video, which contained almost no real-life elements at all. All these videos were directed by Howard Greenhalgh, who continued to work with Pet Shop Boys well into the next decade. Very was also released in a limited edition including an entirely new album, Relentless, which was composed of six all-new progressive house tracks, with a darker tone to the perky Very.

In 1994, Pet Shop Boys offered to remix fellow Parlophone
Parlophone
Parlophone is a record label that was founded in Germany in 1896 by the Carl Lindström Company as Parlophon. The British branch was formed in 1923 as "Parlophone" which developed a reputation in the 1920s as a leading jazz label. It was acquired in 1927 by the Columbia Graphophone Company which...

 act Blur
Blur (band)
Blur is an English alternative rock band. Formed in London in 1989 as Seymour, the group consists of singer Damon Albarn, guitarist Graham Coxon, bassist Alex James and drummer Dave Rowntree. Blur's debut album Leisure incorporated the sounds of Madchester and shoegazing...

's single "Girls & Boys"; it was a club hit throughout Europe and started a sporadic trend for Pet Shop Boys to remix other artists' music. Also in 1994, Pet Shop Boys released the 1994 Comic Relief
Comic Relief
Comic Relief is an operating British charity, founded in 1985 by the comedy scriptwriter Richard Curtis and comedian Lenny Henry in response to famine in Ethiopia. The highlight of Comic Relief's appeal is Red Nose Day, a biennial telethon held in March, alternating with sister project Sport Relief...

 single, "Absolutely Fabulous". The song started when Tennant and Lowe were playing around with sample
Sampling (music)
In music, sampling is the act of taking a portion, or sample, of one sound recording and reusing it as an instrument or a different sound recording of a song or piece. Sampling was originally developed by experimental musicians working with musique concrète and electroacoustic music, who physically...

s from the BBC
BBC
The British Broadcasting Corporation is a British public service broadcaster. Its headquarters is at Broadcasting House in the City of Westminster, London. It is the largest broadcaster in the world, with about 23,000 staff...

 sitcom
British sitcom
A British sitcom tends, as it does in most other countries, to be based on a family, workplace or other institution, where the same group of contrasting characters is brought together in each episode. Unlike American sitcoms, where twenty or more episodes in a season is the norm, British sitcoms...

 Absolutely Fabulous
Absolutely Fabulous
Absolutely Fabulous, also known as Ab Fab, is a British sitcom created by Jennifer Saunders, based on an original idea by her and Dawn French, and written by Saunders, who plays the leading character. It also stars Joanna Lumley and Julia Sawalha, along with June Whitfield and Jane Horrocks...

in the studio. They wanted to release a single, so approached lead actors Jennifer Saunders
Jennifer Saunders
Jennifer Jane Saunders is an English comedienne, screenwriter, singer and actress. She has won two BAFTAs, an International Emmy Award, a British Comedy Award, a Rose d'Or Light Entertainment Festival Award, two Writers' Guild of Great Britain Awards, and a Peoples Choice Award.She first came into...

 and Joanna Lumley
Joanna Lumley
Joanna Lamond Lumley, OBE, FRGS is a British actress, voice-over artist, former-model and author, best known for her roles in British television series Absolutely Fabulous portraying Edina Monsoon's best friend, Patsy Stone, as well as parts in The New Avengers, Sapphire & Steel, and Sensitive...

 and suggested releasing it as a charity single
Charity record
A charity record is a release of a song for a specific charitable cause. Some of the earliest charity records came from the Music for UNICEF Concert, with ABBA's Chiquitita and the Bee Gees' Too Much Heaven among them released as singles, with all the royalties going to UNICEF...

. The single was released under the artist name of 'Absolutely Fabulous' too. Tennant and Lowe do not consider it as a Pet Shop Boys single release and it was not included on their next best-of album. The video to the single featured clips from the sitcom, along with newly recorded footage of Tennant and Lowe with the characters of Edina (Saunders) and Patsy (Lumley).

On 12 September 1994, Pet Shop Boys released the follow-up to their 1986 remix album
Remix album
A remix album is an album consisting mostly of remixes or re-recorded versions of a music artists' earlier released material.One of the earliest remix albums was 1971's Aerial Pandemonium Ballet by Harry Nilsson, which was released by Nilsson after the successes of Everybody's Talkin and The Point!...

 Disco
Disco (album)
Disco is the second album by the UK electronic music group Pet Shop Boys. It was released by Parlophone on .Disco was not an original studio album, but rather a collection of remixes of tracks from their first album, Please, and its respective B-sides...

, in the form of Disco 2
Disco 2
Disco 2 is the eighth album by UK electronic music duo Pet Shop Boys. Released in September 1994 by Parlophone Records, it consists of remixes of songs from their 1993 Very and recent B-sides....

. The album featured club remixes of the singles
Single (music)
In music, a single or record single is a type of release, typically a recording of fewer tracks than an LP or a CD. This can be released for sale to the public in a variety of different formats. In most cases, the single is a song that is released separately from an album, but it can still appear...

 released from Very and Behaviour, in a continuous megamix
Megamix
A megamix is a medley remix containing multiple songs in rapid succession. There may be only one verse or even just a brief chorus of each song used, sometimes in addition to samples of the same or other songs. There may also be some elements of bastard pop in some, though not as much as a mashup...

 by Danny Rampling
Danny Rampling
Danny Rampling is a British House Music DJ and is widely credited as one of the original founders of the UK's rave/club scene. His long career began in the early 1980s playing hip-hop, soul and funk around numerous bars and clubs in London.-Ibiza:...

. Then, in October, Pet Shop Boys began their Discovery tour, which would see them visit areas that they had never performed in before: Singapore
Singapore
Singapore , officially the Republic of Singapore, is a Southeast Asian city-state off the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula, north of the equator. An island country made up of 63 islands, it is separated from Malaysia by the Straits of Johor to its north and from Indonesia's Riau Islands by the...

, Australia, Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico , officially the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico , is an unincorporated territory of the United States, located in the northeastern Caribbean, east of the Dominican Republic and west of both the United States Virgin Islands and the British Virgin Islands.Puerto Rico comprises an...

, Mexico, Colombia
Colombia
Colombia, officially the Republic of Colombia , is a unitary constitutional republic comprising thirty-two departments. The country is located in northwestern South America, bordered to the east by Venezuela and Brazil; to the south by Ecuador and Peru; to the north by the Caribbean Sea; to the...

, Chile, Argentina
Argentina
Argentina , officially the Argentine Republic , is the second largest country in South America by land area, after Brazil. It is constituted as a federation of 23 provinces and an autonomous city, Buenos Aires...

 and Brazil
Brazil
Brazil , officially the Federative Republic of Brazil , is the largest country in South America. It is the world's fifth largest country, both by geographical area and by population with over 192 million people...

. The following year, a new version of the 1986 B-side
A-side and B-side
A-side and B-side originally referred to the two sides of gramophone records on which singles were released beginning in the 1950s. The terms have come to refer to the types of song conventionally placed on each side of the record, with the A-side being the featured song , while the B-side, or...

 to "Suburbia
Suburbia (song)
"Suburbia" is a song by UK synthpop duo Pet Shop Boys. It was remixed and released as the fourth single from the album Please in 1986 and became the band's second UK Top 10 hit, peaking at #8.-Overview:...

", i.e. "Paninaro", was released to promote a B-sides collection, Alternative
Alternative (album)
Alternative is the ninth album by UK electronic music duo Pet Shop Boys. It was first released in 1995.Alternative is a 2-disc set, consisting of 30 B-sides in chronological order...

. The single, called "Paninaro '95
Paninaro (song)
"Paninaro" is a song by English synthpop duo Pet Shop Boys. Originally a B-side to the 1986 single "Suburbia", it was released as a limited-edition single in Italy during the same year; later, in 1995, a re-recording entitled "Paninaro '95" was released to a wider market, to promote the B-side...

", is based on the live version from the Discovery tour.

Bilingual, Nightlife and the musical Closer to Heaven: 1996–2001

In November 1995, Neil Tennant
Neil Tennant
Neil Francis Tennant is an English musician, singer and songwriter, who, with bandmate Chris Lowe, makes up the successful electronic dance music duo Pet Shop Boys.-Childhood:...

 saw David Bowie
David Bowie
David Bowie is an English musician, actor, record producer and arranger. A major figure for over four decades in the world of popular music, Bowie is widely regarded as an innovator, particularly for his work in the 1970s...

 live at Wembley Stadium and met him backstage. Whilst discussing Bowie's then-recent album Outside, Tennant mentioned that his favourite track was "Hallo Spaceboy
Hallo Spaceboy
"Hallo Spaceboy" is a song by David Bowie from his 1995 album Outside, and was issued as a single in 1996. Bowie and Brian Eno co-wrote the song...

". Jokingly, Bowie said that Pet Shop Boys should remix the track and a week later, phoned Tennant asking for this to happen. The new version was completely re-recorded and featured Tennant on backing vocals, using additional lyrics from Bowie's first hit song, "Space Oddity". The single was released on 19 February 1996, with Pet Shop Boys joining Bowie to perform the song on the BRIT Awards
Brit Awards
The Brit Awards are the British Phonographic Industry's annual pop music awards. The name was originally a shortened form of "British", "Britain" or "Britannia", but subsequently became a backronym for British Record Industry Trust...

 and Top of the Pops
Top of the Pops
Top of the Pops, also known as TOTP, is a British music chart television programme, made by the BBC and originally broadcast weekly from 1 January 1964 to 30 July 2006. After 25 December 2006 it became a radio program, now hosted by Tony Blackburn...

.

In April, Pet Shop Boys released a new single, "Before
Before (song)
"Before" is a single by UK electronic music group Pet Shop Boys released as the first single from the group's 1996 album Bilingual. The single, upon its release, peaked at #7 on the UK Singles Chart. In the US, it reached #1 on the U.S. Hot Dance Club Play and reached #7 on the US Bubbling Under...

", leading up to their forthcoming album; the single reached number 7 in the UK Singles Chart
UK Singles Chart
The UK Singles Chart is compiled by The Official Charts Company on behalf of the British record-industry. The full chart contains the top selling 200 singles in the United Kingdom based upon combined record sales and download numbers, though some media outlets only list the Top 40 or the Top 75 ...

. That same month, Tina Turner
Tina Turner
Tina Turner is an American singer and actress whose career has spanned more than 50 years. She has won numerous awards and her achievements in the rock music genre have led many to call her the "Queen of Rock 'n' Roll".Turner started out her music career with husband Ike Turner as a member of the...

 also released her Wildest Dreams
Wildest Dreams
Wildest Dreams is the eighth solo album by Tina Turner, released on Parlophone/Virgin in 1996. It went double platinum in the UK, France, Germany, and on the European charts.-Overview:...

album, which featured the Pet Shop Boys-produced track "Confidential". In August, Pet Shop Boys released a follow-up single, "Se a vida é (That's the Way Life Is)", a Latin American music
Latin American music
Latin American music, found within Central and South America, is a series of musical styles and genres that mixes influences from Spanish, African and indigenous sources, that has recently become very famous in the US.-Argentina:...

-inspired track, featuring a drum sample
Sampling (music)
In music, sampling is the act of taking a portion, or sample, of one sound recording and reusing it as an instrument or a different sound recording of a song or piece. Sampling was originally developed by experimental musicians working with musique concrète and electroacoustic music, who physically...

 from a track called "Estrada da paixão" by Brazil
Brazil
Brazil , officially the Federative Republic of Brazil , is the largest country in South America. It is the world's fifth largest country, both by geographical area and by population with over 192 million people...

ian act Olodum
Olodum
Olodum is a cultural group based in the Afro Brazilian community of Salvador, the capital city of the state of Bahia, Brazil. It was founded by percussionist, Neguinho do Samba....

. This preceded the sixth Pet Shop Boys album Bilingual
Bilingual (album)
Bilingual is the tenth album by the English dance music group Pet Shop Boys. It has sold about 1,000,000 albums world-wide.-Overview:...

, which was released in September. In December 1996, Neil appeared live with Suede
Suede (band)
Suede are an English alternative rock band from London, formed in 1989. The group's most prominent early line-up featured singer Brett Anderson, guitarist Bernard Butler, bass player Mat Osman and drummer Simon Gilbert. By 1992, Suede were hailed as "The Best New Band in Britain", and attracted...

, singing the Suede song "Saturday Night" as a duet with Brett Anderson
Brett Anderson
Brett Lewis Anderson is an English singer-songwriter, best known as the lead vocalist of the band Suede. After Suede disbanded in 2003, he briefly fronted The Tears, and has released four solo albums...

 and Pet Shop Boys track "Rent
Rent (song)
"Rent" is a 1987 single by the Pet Shop Boys. It was released in the UK by Parlophone on 12 October 1987. The lyrics deal with a financially one-sided relationship, i.e...

". Both live tracks were released with the Suede single "Filmstar" in July 1997.

Pet Shop Boys kicked off Summer 1997 with a sold-out three-week residency at the Savoy Theatre
Savoy Theatre
The Savoy Theatre is a West End theatre located in the Strand in the City of Westminster, London, England. The theatre opened on 10 October 1881 and was built by Richard D'Oyly Carte on the site of the old Savoy Palace as a showcase for the popular series of comic operas of Gilbert and Sullivan,...

, in London, in June. Entitled Somewhere and being promoted by a cover version of the song "Somewhere
Somewhere (song)
"Somewhere" is a song from the 1957 Broadway musical West Side Story which was made into a film in 1961. The music is composed by Leonard Bernstein with lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, and takes a phrase from the slow movement of Beethoven's 'Emperor' Piano Concerto, which forms the start of the...

" from the musical West Side Story, the shows used projections filmed by the artist Sam Taylor-Wood
Sam Taylor-Wood
Samantha "Sam" Taylor-Wood OBE , born Samantha Taylor, is an English filmmaker, photographer, and visual artist. Her directorial feature film debut came in 2009 with Nowhere Boy, a film based on the childhood experiences of The Beatles songwriter and singer John Lennon...

. Pet Shop Boys would later work with Sam Taylor-Wood again: in 1998, they recorded a version of "Je t'aime... moi non plus
Je t'aime... moi non plus
"Je t'aime… moi non plus" is a French duet written by Serge Gainsbourg. It was written for and sung with Brigitte Bardot in 1967, but that version was not released until 1986. In 1969, Gainsbourg recorded a version with his lover, Jane Birkin. It reached number one in the UK, but was banned in...

", originally by Serge Gainsbourg
Serge Gainsbourg
Serge Gainsbourg, born Lucien Ginsburg was a French singer-songwriter, actor and director. Gainsbourg's extremely varied musical style and individuality make him difficult to categorize...

, with her and again in 2003, they covered the Donna Summer
Donna Summer
LaDonna Adrian Gaines , known by her stage name, Donna Summer, is an American singer/songwriter who gained prominence during the disco era of the 1970s. She has a mezzo-soprano vocal range. Summer is a five-time Grammy winner and was the first artist to have three consecutive double albums reach...

 track "Love to Love You Baby
Love to Love You Baby (song)
"Love to Love You Baby" is a song by American singer Donna Summer released in 1975 . It became one of the first ever disco hits to also be released in an extended form.-Song information and original release:...

", and gave it a limited edition release credited to Kiki Kokova
Sam Taylor-Wood
Samantha "Sam" Taylor-Wood OBE , born Samantha Taylor, is an English filmmaker, photographer, and visual artist. Her directorial feature film debut came in 2009 with Nowhere Boy, a film based on the childhood experiences of The Beatles songwriter and singer John Lennon...

, a pseudonym used by Taylor-Wood for this project.

The majority of 1998 was spent with a series of live dates and minor releases, including a charity album of Noel Coward
Noël Coward
Sir Noël Peirce Coward was an English playwright, composer, director, actor and singer, known for his wit, flamboyance, and what Time magazine called "a sense of personal style, a combination of cheek and chic, pose and poise".Born in Teddington, a suburb of London, Coward attended a dance academy...

 songs, called Twentieth Century Blues
Twentieth-Century Blues: The Songs of Noel Coward
Twentieth-Century Blues: The Songs of Noël Coward is a 1998 Noël Coward tribute album curated by Neil Tennant, who invited prominent artists of the day to reinterpret Noël Coward’s songs for the late 20th century....

. The album included Pet Shop Boys' version of "Sail Away", along with songs performed by Elton John
Elton John
Sir Elton Hercules John, CBE, Hon DMus is an English rock singer-songwriter, composer, pianist and occasional actor...

, Texas
Texas (band)
Texas are a Scottish pop band from Bearsden, near Glasgow, Scotland. They were founded by Johnny McElhone in 1986 and feature Sharleen Spiteri on lead vocals. Texas made their performing debut in March 1988 at Scotland's University of Dundee...

, Marianne Faithfull
Marianne Faithfull
Marianne Evelyn Faithfull is an award-winning English singer, songwriter and actress whose career has spanned five decades....

, The Divine Comedy
The Divine Comedy (band)
The Divine Comedy are a chamber pop band from Ireland, fronted by Neil Hannon. Formed in 1989, Hannon has been the only constant member of the group, playing, in some instances, all of the non-orchestral instrumentation bar drums. To date, ten studio albums have been released under the Divine...

, Suede
Suede (band)
Suede are an English alternative rock band from London, formed in 1989. The group's most prominent early line-up featured singer Brett Anderson, guitarist Bernard Butler, bass player Mat Osman and drummer Simon Gilbert. By 1992, Suede were hailed as "The Best New Band in Britain", and attracted...

, Damon Albarn
Damon Albarn
Damon Albarn is an English singer-songwriter and record producer who has been involved in many high profile projects, coming to prominence as the frontman and primary songwriter of Britpop band Blur...

, Vic Reeves
Vic Reeves
James Roderick Moir , better known by the stage name Vic Reeves, is an English comedian, best known for his double act with Bob Mortimer . He is known for his surreal and non sequitur sense of humour....

 and Robbie Williams
Robbie Williams
Robert Peter "Robbie" Williams is an English singer-songwriter, vocal coach and occasional actor. He is a member of the pop group Take That. Williams rose to fame in the band's first run in the early- to mid-1990s. After many disagreements with the management and certain group members, Williams...

. Tennant also co-produced the Williams track and provided backing vocals for Elton John. Tennant provided backing vocals on Robbie Williams' "No Regrets" single, along with Neil Hannon
Neil Hannon
Neil Hannon is a Northern Irish singer and songwriter, best known as the creator and frontman of the chamber pop group The Divine Comedy. The band's official website even goes so far as to say, "The Divine Comedy is Neil Hannon," and Hannon is quoted in an interview as saying, "The Divine Comedy...

 from The Divine Comedy. Meanwhile, the band switched managers again as Carrington resigned and was succeeded by Mitch Clark, who had previously worked for EMI International
EMI
The EMI Group, also known as EMI Music or simply EMI, is a multinational music company headquartered in London, United Kingdom. It is the fourth-largest business group and family of record labels in the recording industry and one of the "big four" record companies. EMI Group also has a major...

 as Head of Promotion.

During this time, Pet Shop Boys began to work with playwright Jonathan Harvey
Jonathan Harvey (playwright)
Jonathan Harvey is a British playwright whose work has earned multiple awards. He is also a former secondary school English teacher.-Life and works:...

 on a stage musical project. In 1999, many of the tracks recorded ended up on the duo's seventh studio album, Nightlife, which included the Top 20 singles "I Don't Know What You Want But I Can't Give It Any More
I Don't Know What You Want But I Can't Give It Any More
"I Don't Know What You Want But I Can't Give It Any More" is a song by British electronic music group Pet Shop Boys, featured on their 1999 album Nightlife...

" and "New York City Boy
New York City Boy
"New York City Boy" is the second single off the album Nightlife by British music group Pet Shop Boys. In the UK, the single peaked at #14 on the UK Singles Chart...

", the Top 10 hit "You Only Tell Me You Love Me When You're Drunk
You Only Tell Me You Love Me When You're Drunk
"You Only Tell Me You Love Me When You're Drunk" is a single by UK electronic music group Pet Shop Boys, released as the third and last single from their album Nightlife in 2000. It was a success on the UK Singles Chart, reaching the top 10 at #8, but failed to chart on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100...

", "Closer to Heaven"—which would later become the title of Pet Shop Boys' musical—as well a duet with Kylie Minogue
Kylie Minogue
Kylie Ann Minogue, OBE - often known simply as Kylie - is an Australian singer, recording artist, songwriter, and actress. After beginning her career as a child actress on Australian television, she achieved recognition through her role in the television soap opera Neighbours, before commencing...

, "In Denial", about a father coming out to his daughter. Minogue later performed the track live, during her 2005 Showgirl tour, singing to a pre-recorded Neil Tennant. This is not the first time that Pet Shop Boys have worked with Minogue: in 1994, they indeed wrote a song for inclusion on her eponymous Kylie Minogue
Kylie Minogue (album)
Kylie Minogue is the self-titled fifth studio album by Australian pop singer Kylie Minogue, which was first released on 19 September 1994. The album was first released by Deconstruction Records/BMG throughout much of the world while in Australia and New Zealand the album was released by Mushroom...

album, called "Falling
Kylie Minogue (album)
Kylie Minogue is the self-titled fifth studio album by Australian pop singer Kylie Minogue, which was first released on 19 September 1994. The album was first released by Deconstruction Records/BMG throughout much of the world while in Australia and New Zealand the album was released by Mushroom...

", which was based on an unreleased remix of "Go West
Go West (song)
"Go West" is a song by the 1970s disco group Village People. The song eventually found greater success when it was covered in 1993 by the synthpop duo Pet Shop Boys.-Village People version:...

" with new lyrics by Tennant; however, Minogue and her record company did not like the production sound of Pet Shop Boys' demo and asked Farley & Heller
Pete Heller
Pete Heller is an English electronic and house music producer. He is recognised in the dance community for his solo work, and his remixes with frequent collaborator Terry Farley. As a duo they have released popular tunes under the names Heller & Farley Project , Fire Island plus The Look and Feel...

 to finally produce the track.

1999 ended for the duo with a world tour, which continued well into 2000, this time with the stage sets designed by architect Zaha Hadid
Zaha Hadid
Zaha Hadid, CBE is an Iraqi-British architect.-Life and career:Hadid was born in 1950 in Baghdad, Iraq. She received a degree in mathematics from the American University of Beirut before moving to study at the Architectural Association School of Architecture in London.After graduating she worked...

. The tour took them to the United States, Canada, Japan, Europe and the UK. In the Summer of 2000, they also played a series of festival dates in Europe, including a performance at the Glastonbury Festival
Glastonbury Festival
The Glastonbury Festival of Contemporary Performing Arts, commonly abbreviated to Glastonbury or even Glasto, is a performing arts festival that takes place near Pilton, Somerset, England, best known for its contemporary music, but also for dance, comedy, theatre, circus, cabaret and other arts.The...

, where they performed on the main stage, on Saturday night, at 9:30 pm, to a triumphant reception. In 2000, they won their third Ivor Novello Award, honouring their "Outstanding Contribution" to music. Throughout 2000, they continued to work on their musical and in May they started workshopping the project and finalising the plot and songs to be used.

The musical, Closer to Heaven
Closer to Heaven
Closer to Heaven is a musical by Jonathan Harvey and Pet Shop Boys. It was premiered in May 2001 at the Arts Theatre in London, opening to mixed reviews, and ran until 13 October 2001...

, opened at the Arts Theatre
Arts Theatre
The Arts Theatre is a theatre in Great Newport Street, in Westminster, Central London. It now operates as the West End's smallest commercial receiving house.-History:...

 in London, in 2001, with financial backing from Andrew Lloyd Webber
Andrew Lloyd Webber
Andrew Lloyd Webber, Baron Lloyd-Webber is an English composer of musical theatre.Lloyd Webber has achieved great popular success in musical theatre. Several of his musicals have run for more than a decade both in the West End and on Broadway. He has composed 13 musicals, a song cycle, a set of...

's Really Useful Group
Really Useful Group
The Really Useful Group Ltd. is an international company set up in 1977 by Andrew Lloyd Webber. It is involved in theatre, film, television, video and concert productions, merchandising, magazine publishing, records and music publishing...

. Reviews were mixed and although the run was initially extended, it closed earlier than expected, due to poor ticket sales, in October 2001. Around the time of the London closure, Tennant said that they were in talks to take the musical to various locations in Europe (particularly Germany, which is a big market for Pet Shop Boys) and to take it to New York. Nothing further was issued by the Pet Shop Boys or Really Useful Group regarding these performances; in 2005, a series of performances were staged in the Brisbane Powerhouse, Australia, though they were arranged independently of Pet Shop Boys and the Really Useful Group.

Release, Disco 3, PopArt, Live 8, Back to Mine and Battleship Potemkin OST: 2002–05

After the mixed fortunes of Closer to Heaven
Closer to Heaven
Closer to Heaven is a musical by Jonathan Harvey and Pet Shop Boys. It was premiered in May 2001 at the Arts Theatre in London, opening to mixed reviews, and ran until 13 October 2001...

, Pet Shop Boys returned to the studio to start work on their eighth album. After toying with genres including hip hop
Hip hop music
Hip hop music, also called hip-hop, rap music or hip-hop music, is a musical genre consisting of a stylized rhythmic music that commonly accompanies rapping, a rhythmic and rhyming speech that is chanted...

, they went for a stripped back acoustic
Acoustic music
Acoustic music comprises music that solely or primarily uses instruments which produce sound through entirely acoustic means, as opposed to electric or electronic means...

 sound as a complete change from the over-the-top dance music
Dance music
Dance music is music composed specifically to facilitate or accompany dancing. It can be either a whole musical piece or part of a larger musical arrangement...

 of the musical. In 2002, they released the modestly successful album Release
Release (Pet Shop Boys album)
Release is the twelfth studio album, the eighth of entirely new music, by the English electronic music duo Pet Shop Boys. It was first released in 2002....

. Most of the tracks were produced by the duo themselves and many featured Johnny Marr
Johnny Marr
Johnny Marr is an English musician and songwriter. Marr rose to fame in the 1980s as the guitarist in The Smiths, with whom he formed a prolific songwriting partnership with Morrissey. Marr has been a member of Electronic, The The, and Modest Mouse...

 on guitar. The first single, "Home and Dry
Home and Dry
"Home and dry" is a song by British music group Pet Shop Boys released as the first UK single and the second US single from their album Release. It reached the top 15 on the UK Singles Chart at #14 and peaked at #44 on the US Hot Dance Club Play....

", featured a very peculiar video
Music video
A music video or song video is a short film integrating a song and imagery, produced for promotional or artistic purposes. Modern music videos are primarily made and used as a marketing device intended to promote the sale of music recordings...

, directed by Wolfgang Tillmans
Wolfgang Tillmans
Wolfgang Tillmans is a German Fine-art photographer and artist. His comprehensive and diverse body of work is distinguished by observation of his surroundings and an ongoing investigation of the photographic medium’s foundations. In 2000, Tillmans was the first photographer and also the first...

, mostly consisting of raw camcorder footage of mice filmed in the London Underground
London Underground
The London Underground is a rapid transit system serving a large part of Greater London and some parts of Buckinghamshire, Hertfordshire and Essex in England...

. The follow-up single "I Get Along
I Get Along (Pet Shop Boys song)
"I get along" is a single by the Pet Shop Boys from their album Release. A love song, Neil Tennant has also hinted that it can also be interpreted as commentary on the then fraught relationship between British Prime Minister Tony Blair and New Labour architect Peter Mandelson after the latter had...

" had a video filmed by Bruce Weber
Bruce Weber (photographer)
Bruce Weber is an American fashion photographer and occasional filmmaker. He is most widely known for his ad campaigns for Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren, Pirelli, Abercrombie & Fitch, Revlon, and Gianni Versace, as well as his work for Vogue, GQ, Vanity Fair, Elle, Life, Interview, and Rolling Stone...

, and after this they embarked on another world tour, although this time it was a stripped back affair, with no dancers, backing singers, costumes or lavish sets. They used two extra guitarists, Bic Hayes and Mark Refoy, a percussionist (Dawne Adams) and regular programmer
Programming (music)
Programming is a form of music production and performance using electronic devices, often sequencers or computer programs, to generate music. Programming is used in nearly all forms of electronic music and in most hip hop music since the 1990s. It is also frequently used in modern pop and rock...

 (Pete Gledall) and keyboardist Jordan Scott-Michael.

The tour took them first to several universities around the UK; these dates saw them perform at Bristol University, Keele University
Keele University
Keele University is a campus university near Newcastle-under-Lyme in Staffordshire, England. Founded in 1949 as an experimental college dedicated to a broad curriculum and interdisciplinary study, Keele is most notable for pioneering the dual honours degree in Britain...

, University of East Anglia
University of East Anglia
The University of East Anglia is a public research university based in Norwich, United Kingdom. It was established in 1963, and is a founder-member of the 1994 Group of research-intensive universities.-History:...

 in Norwich
Norwich
Norwich is a city in England. It is the regional administrative centre and county town of Norfolk. During the 11th century, Norwich was the largest city in England after London, and one of the most important places in the kingdom...

, University of Teesside
University of Teesside
Teesside University is a university in Middlesbrough, England. It has a student body of 29,285 students as of the 2009/10 academic year. It recorded rises in applications of 25.1 per cent and 23.5 per cent for degree courses beginning in 2010, the highest such percentage increases of the five...

, Middlesbrough
Middlesbrough
Middlesbrough is a large town situated on the south bank of the River Tees in north east England, that sits within the ceremonial county of North Yorkshire...

 and De Montfort University
De Montfort University
De Montfort University is a public research and teaching university situated in the medieval Old Town of Leicester, England, adjacent to the River Soar and the Leicester Castle Gardens...

, Leicester
Leicester
Leicester is a city and unitary authority in the East Midlands of England, and the county town of Leicestershire. The city lies on the River Soar and at the edge of the National Forest...

. Subsequent dates took them to Germany, the U.S., Canada, Spain, Italy, France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Denmark, Sweden, then another series of dates in the UK again, Switzerland and onto Japan, Singapore
Singapore
Singapore , officially the Republic of Singapore, is a Southeast Asian city-state off the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula, north of the equator. An island country made up of 63 islands, it is separated from Malaysia by the Straits of Johor to its north and from Indonesia's Riau Islands by the...

, Hong Kong and then a first-ever date in Thailand
Thailand
Thailand , officially the Kingdom of Thailand , formerly known as Siam , is a country located at the centre of the Indochina peninsula and Southeast Asia. It is bordered to the north by Burma and Laos, to the east by Laos and Cambodia, to the south by the Gulf of Thailand and Malaysia, and to the...

 as the final show, at the large Bangkok
Bangkok
Bangkok is the capital and largest urban area city in Thailand. It is known in Thai as Krung Thep Maha Nakhon or simply Krung Thep , meaning "city of angels." The full name of Bangkok is Krung Thep Mahanakhon Amon Rattanakosin Mahintharayutthaya Mahadilok Phop Noppharat Ratchathani Burirom...

 Impact Arena, in front of 9,000 fans. A third single, "London", was only released in Germany, at the request of EMI Germany
EMI
The EMI Group, also known as EMI Music or simply EMI, is a multinational music company headquartered in London, United Kingdom. It is the fourth-largest business group and family of record labels in the recording industry and one of the "big four" record companies. EMI Group also has a major...

. It was never planned for release in the UK, although a promotional video was shot by the distinguished photographer Martin Parr
Martin Parr
Martin Parr is a British documentary photographer, photojournalist and photobook collector. He is known for his photographic projects that take a critical look at aspects of modern life, in particular provincial and suburban life in England...

 and it was serviced to some UK radio stations. Following a live stint on the John Peel
John Peel
John Robert Parker Ravenscroft, OBE , known professionally as John Peel, was an English disc jockey, radio presenter, record producer and journalist. He was the longest-serving of the original BBC Radio 1 DJs, broadcasting regularly from 1967 until his death in 2004...

 show on Radio 1
BBC Radio 1
BBC Radio 1 is a British national radio station operated by the British Broadcasting Corporation which also broadcasts internationally, specialising in current popular music and chart hits throughout the day. Radio 1 provides alternative genres after 7:00pm including electronic dance, hip hop, rock...

, Pet Shop Boys released Disco 3
Disco 3
Not to be confused with The Fat Boys, whose original name was The Disco 3.Disco 3 is the thirteenth album by the UK electronic music duo Pet Shop Boys. It was released in 2003...

, in February 2003. The album followed their previous Disco albums, but this one also included new songs as well as remixes.

In 2003, Pet Shop Boys launched two new labels, Olde English Vinyl and Lucky Kunst, their Spaghetti Records
Spaghetti Records
Spaghetti Records is a record label launched in September 1991 by Pet Shop Boys.The first single to be released on Spaghetti was by a 21-year-old Scottish singer, synthesizer player and songwriter called David Cicero. The single was called "Heaven Must Have Sent You Back to Me"...

 label becoming defunct. The first release on Olde English Vinyl was Atomizer
Atomizer (band)
Atomizer is a synthpop duo featuring Nag Nag Nag founder and veteran musician and DJ Jonny Slut with fellow Nag Nag Nag DJ Fil OK. Their debut single was co-produced by the KLF's Jimmy Cauty.-Singles:...

's "Hooked on Radiation", followed by Pete Burns
Pete Burns
Pete Burns is an English singer-songwriter, author and television personality who founded the band Dead or Alive in 1980, for which he acted as the vocalist and songwriter, and which rose to mainstream success with their 1985 single "You Spin Me Round "...

' "Jack and Jill Party" in 2004. The only Lucky Kunst release to date is the mentioned Kiki Kokova
Sam Taylor-Wood
Samantha "Sam" Taylor-Wood OBE , born Samantha Taylor, is an English filmmaker, photographer, and visual artist. Her directorial feature film debut came in 2009 with Nowhere Boy, a film based on the childhood experiences of The Beatles songwriter and singer John Lennon...

's version of "Love to Love You Baby
Love to Love You Baby (song)
"Love to Love You Baby" is a song by American singer Donna Summer released in 1975 . It became one of the first ever disco hits to also be released in an extended form.-Song information and original release:...

". They also remixed Yoko Ono
Yoko Ono
is a Japanese artist, musician, author and peace activist, known for her work in avant-garde art, music and filmmaking as well as her marriage to John Lennon...

's "Walking on Thin Ice
Walking on Thin Ice
"Walking on Thin Ice" is a New Wave/dance song by Yoko Ono, released in 1981. She and John Lennon concluded the recording of the song on December 8, 1980. It was upon their return from the recording studio to The Dakota that Lennon was murdered by Mark David Chapman...

" in 2003 and Rammstein
Rammstein
Rammstein is a German Neue Deutsche Härte band from Berlin, formed in 1994. The band consists of members Till Lindemann , Richard Z. Kruspe , Paul H. Landers , Oliver "Ollie" Riedel , Christoph "Doom" Schneider and Christian "Flake" Lorenz...

's "Mein Teil
Mein Teil
"Mein Teil" is the first single by the German industrial metal band Rammstein from their fourth album Reise, Reise. The song is inspired by the case of Armin Meiwes and Bernd Jürgen Armando Brandes. In March 2001, in Rotenburg an der Fulda, the two men aged in their 40s met each other, cut off and...

" in 2004. Another new manager, David Dorrell, was brought on board to replace Clark. In November 2003, Pet Shop Boys released a second greatest hits album, PopArt: Pet Shop Boys – The Hits, a double compilation
Compilation album
A compilation album is an album featuring tracks from one or more performers, often culled from a variety of sources The tracks are usually collected according to a common characteristic, such as popularity, genre, source or subject matter...

 with two new singles: "Miracles" and "Flamboyant
Flamboyant (song)
"Flamboyant" is a single by Pet Shop Boys, released in 2004. It was the second single and one of two new songs from their 2003 singles compilation, PopArt.It peaked at #12 in UK....

". Not chronologically arranged, the tracks were divided into two discs: Pop
Pop Art: Pet Shop Boys - The Hits
PopArt: Pet Shop Boys – The Hits is the fourteenth album by the UK electronic music duo Pet Shop Boys. It was released in 2003. PopArt is a compilation of Pet Shop Boys' top-20 UK singles along with two new tracks, "Miracles" and "Flamboyant" which have subsequently also been...

including the more traditional pop songs and Art
Pop Art: Pet Shop Boys - The Hits
PopArt: Pet Shop Boys – The Hits is the fourteenth album by the UK electronic music duo Pet Shop Boys. It was released in 2003. PopArt is a compilation of Pet Shop Boys' top-20 UK singles along with two new tracks, "Miracles" and "Flamboyant" which have subsequently also been...

containing those works which were considered more experimental.

In September 2004, Pet Shop Boys appeared at a free concert in Trafalgar Square
Trafalgar Square
Trafalgar Square is a public space and tourist attraction in central London, England, United Kingdom. At its centre is Nelson's Column, which is guarded by four lion statues at its base. There are a number of statues and sculptures in the square, with one plinth displaying changing pieces of...

 in London, where they performed, with the Dresdner Sinfoniker orchestra, a whole new soundtrack to accompany the seminal 1925 silent film
Silent film
A silent film is a film with no synchronized recorded sound, especially with no spoken dialogue. In silent films for entertainment the dialogue is transmitted through muted gestures, pantomime and title cards...

 Battleship Potemkin. There were four further live performances of the work with the Dresdner Sinfoniker in Germany in September 2005. The Battleship Potemkin soundtrack
Battleship Potemkin (album)
Battleship Potemkin is a 2005 album of electronic and orchestral music written by Neil Tennant and Chris Lowe from Pet Shop Boys. The music on the album is performed by Pet Shop Boys and the Dresdner Sinfoniker...

 was then released on 5 September 2005. In November 2004, Pet Shop Boys played at the Prince's Trust concert entitled Produced by Trevor Horn with other artists who had worked with famous British producer Trevor Horn
Trevor Horn
Trevor Charles Horn CBE is an English pop music record producer, songwriter, musician and singer. He was born in Houghton-le-Spring in north-east England....

, including Grace Jones
Grace Jones
Grace Jones is a Jamaican-American singer, model and actress.Jones secured a record deal with Island Records in 1977, which resulted in a string of dance-club hits. In the late 1970s, she adapted the emerging electronic music style and adopted a severe, androgynous look with square-cut hair and...

, ABC
ABC (band)
ABC are an English band, that charted ten UK and five US Top 40 singles between 1981 and 1990. The band continues to tour and released a new album, Traffic, in 2008.-Formation:...

, Seal
Seal (musician)
Seal Henry Olusegun Olumide Adeola Samuel , known simply as Seal, is a British soul and R&B singer-songwriter, of Nigerian and Brazilian background. Seal has won numerous music awards throughout his career, including three Brit Awards—winning Best British Male in 1992, four Grammy Awards, and an...

 and Frankie Goes to Hollywood
Frankie Goes to Hollywood
Frankie Goes to Hollywood were a British dance-pop band popular in the mid-1980s. The group was fronted by Holly Johnson , with Paul Rutherford , Peter Gill , Mark O'Toole , and Brian Nash .The group's debut single "Relax" was banned by the BBC in 1984 while at number six in the charts and...

. In 2005, Pet Shop Boys was selected as the headline act for the Moscow Live 8 concert
Live 8 concert, Moscow
On 2 July 2005, a Live 8 concert was held in Red Square, Moscow, Russia. Although not on such a large scale as the concerts held at Hyde Park, London and Philadelphia, it was still a momentous occasion for Russia, and had an impressive line up....

, in Red Square
Red Square
Red Square is a city square in Moscow, Russia. The square separates the Kremlin, the former royal citadel and currently the official residence of the President of Russia, from a historic merchant quarter known as Kitai-gorod...

. They were received extremely well by the crowd in Moscow. Also in 2005, Pet Shop Boys were asked to put together the twentieth release in the Back to Mine
Back to Mine
Back to Mine is a series of mix albums, usually mixed by renowned DJs or composers of electronic music. The compilations usually feature artists other than the artist compiling the album, and are based on what the artist would play at home after a night out, rather than as part of a nightclub...

series, an ongoing anthology showcasing artists' favourite music selections, with an emphasis on afterhours chill-out music. As a condition, Neil Tennant
Neil Tennant
Neil Francis Tennant is an English musician, singer and songwriter, who, with bandmate Chris Lowe, makes up the successful electronic dance music duo Pet Shop Boys.-Childhood:...

 and Chris Lowe
Chris Lowe
Chris Lowe is an English musician, who, with colleague Neil Tennant, makes up the pop duo Pet Shop Boys.-Childhood:...

 were given one disc each, whereas all previous releases in the series consisted of only a single disc per group (see Back to Mine: Pet Shop Boys
Back to Mine: Pet Shop Boys
Back to Mine: Pet Shop Boys, compiled by synthpop duo Pet Shop Boys, is the twentieth compilation album in the Back To Mine series published by DMC Publishing.- Overview :...

).

Fundamental, touring, Disco 4, Catalogue, Concrete and Cubism: 2006–08

Pet Shop Boys began 2006 remixing Madonna
Madonna (entertainer)
Madonna is an American singer-songwriter, actress and entrepreneur. Born in Bay City, Michigan, she moved to New York City in 1977 to pursue a career in modern dance. After performing in the music groups Breakfast Club and Emmy, she released her debut album in 1983...

's single "Sorry
Sorry (Madonna song)
"Sorry" is a song by American singer-songwriter Madonna from her tenth studio album Confessions on a Dance Floor. It was written and produced by Madonna and Stuart Price and released as the second single from the album on February 28, 2006. It later appeared on Celebration, her 2009 greatest hits...

", for release in February. The single reached number one in the UK and the Pet Shop Boys' remix included new backing vocals performed by Tennant. Madonna subsequently used the Pet Shop Boys' remix, including Tennant's vocals, on her 2006 Confessions Tour
Confessions Tour
Confessions Tour was the seventh concert tour by American singer-songwriter Madonna. It supported her tenth studio album, Confessions on a Dance Floor. Madonna confirmed the possibility of going out on a tour as early as November 2005. Jamie King, Madonna's longtime collaborator, was then hired on...

. In April, Pet Shop Boys released a new single that reached #8 in the UK, "I'm with Stupid", a commentary on the relationship between George W. Bush
George W. Bush
George Walker Bush is an American politician who served as the 43rd President of the United States, from 2001 to 2009. Before that, he was the 46th Governor of Texas, having served from 1995 to 2000....

 and Tony Blair
Tony Blair
Anthony Charles Lynton Blair is a former British Labour Party politician who served as the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 2 May 1997 to 27 June 2007. He was the Member of Parliament for Sedgefield from 1983 to 2007 and Leader of the Labour Party from 1994 to 2007...

. The promo video featured Matt Lucas
Matt Lucas
Matthew Richard "Matt" Lucas is an English comedian, screenwriter and actor best known for his acclaimed work with David Walliams in the television show Little Britain; as well as for his portrayals of the scorekeeping baby George Dawes in the comedy panel game Shooting Stars, Tweedledee and...

 and David Walliams
David Walliams
David Edward Walliams is an English comedian, writer and actor, known for his partnership with Matt Lucas on the TV sketch show Little Britain and its predecessor Rock Profile...

, better known as the team behind Little Britain
Little Britain
Little Britain is a British character-based comedy sketch show which was first broadcast on BBC radio and then turned into a television show. It was written by comic duo David Walliams and Matt Lucas...

. Lucas and Walliams portray Tennant and Lowe, parodying two of the duo's previous videos, "Go West
Go West (song)
"Go West" is a song by the 1970s disco group Village People. The song eventually found greater success when it was covered in 1993 by the synthpop duo Pet Shop Boys.-Village People version:...

", and "Can You Forgive Her?
Can You Forgive Her? (song)
"Can You Forgive Her?" is a song by Pet Shop Boys, recorded for their 1993 album Very.Starting with a huge crash of synth and trumpet, it remains one of the more dramatic songs recorded by the duo—reminiscent of early hits like "It's a Sin". It was released as Verys lead single, almost four...

". The ninth Pet Shop Boys studio album, Fundamental
Fundamental (Pet Shop Boys album)
Fundamental is the sixteenth album, the ninth of entirely new music, by the British band Pet Shop Boys. It was released in May 2006 in the United Kingdom, Europe, Japan, and Canada, and was released in late June 2006 in the United States. The album entered the UK Albums Chart at number five on 28...

, followed in May, reaching a strong #5 in their home country. The album was produced by Trevor Horn
Trevor Horn
Trevor Charles Horn CBE is an English pop music record producer, songwriter, musician and singer. He was born in Houghton-le-Spring in north-east England....

, who Pet Shop Boys had previously worked with on "Left to My Own Devices
Left to My Own Devices
"Left to My Own Devices" is a song recorded by Pet Shop Boys, released as the second single from their third studio album, Introspective. It was also the first track of the album. It is their 9th best selling-hit....

", in 1988. The album was also released with a limited edition remix album
Remix album
A remix album is an album consisting mostly of remixes or re-recorded versions of a music artists' earlier released material.One of the earliest remix albums was 1971's Aerial Pandemonium Ballet by Harry Nilsson, which was released by Nilsson after the successes of Everybody's Talkin and The Point!...

 called Fundamentalism
Fundamental (Pet Shop Boys album)
Fundamental is the sixteenth album, the ninth of entirely new music, by the British band Pet Shop Boys. It was released in May 2006 in the United Kingdom, Europe, Japan, and Canada, and was released in late June 2006 in the United States. The album entered the UK Albums Chart at number five on 28...

, which included a version of "In Private
In Private
"In Private" was the third single in a row to be a charting success for British singer Dusty Springfield, after nearly two decades of little chart success. Both "In Private" and Springfield's previous single, "Nothing Has Been Proved" were produced by Pet Shop Boys, who helped return Springfield to...

" as a duet with Elton John
Elton John
Sir Elton Hercules John, CBE, Hon DMus is an English rock singer-songwriter, composer, pianist and occasional actor...

 and "Fugitive
Fundamental (Pet Shop Boys album)
Fundamental is the sixteenth album, the ninth of entirely new music, by the British band Pet Shop Boys. It was released in May 2006 in the United Kingdom, Europe, Japan, and Canada, and was released in late June 2006 in the United States. The album entered the UK Albums Chart at number five on 28...

", a new track produced by Richard X
Richard X
Richard Philips, best known by his stage name Richard X, is a British songwriter and music producer. Gaining attention as a pioneer of the bootleg craze, Richard X has earned success as a producer and remixer. He has helmed hit singles for artists including Annie, Kelis, Liberty X, Rachel Stevens...

.

The week that Fundamental
Fundamental (Pet Shop Boys album)
Fundamental is the sixteenth album, the ninth of entirely new music, by the British band Pet Shop Boys. It was released in May 2006 in the United Kingdom, Europe, Japan, and Canada, and was released in late June 2006 in the United States. The album entered the UK Albums Chart at number five on 28...

was released, a documentary, entitled Pet Shop Boys – A Life in Pop, was broadcast on Channel 4
Channel 4
Channel 4 is a British public-service television broadcaster which began working on 2 November 1982. Although largely commercially self-funded, it is ultimately publicly owned; originally a subsidiary of the Independent Broadcasting Authority , the station is now owned and operated by the Channel...

, directed by George Scott and produced by Nick de Grunwald. The original broadcast was less than an hour in duration; a 140-minute version was released on DVD in October 2006. Contributors to the programme included Robbie Williams
Robbie Williams
Robert Peter "Robbie" Williams is an English singer-songwriter, vocal coach and occasional actor. He is a member of the pop group Take That. Williams rose to fame in the band's first run in the early- to mid-1990s. After many disagreements with the management and certain group members, Williams...

, Brandon Flowers
Brandon Flowers
Brandon Richard Flowers is an American musician, best known as the frontman of the Las Vegas-based rock band The Killers. He has also released a solo album titled Flamingo.-Early life:...

, Tim Rice-Oxley
Tim Rice-Oxley
Timothy James Rice-Oxley , is an English multi-instrumentalist, best known as co-founder, the principal composer and pianist, backing vocalist of piano rock band Keane.-Life and career:...

, Jake Shears
Jake Shears
Jake Shears is the lead male vocalist for the American music group Scissor Sisters.-Early life and education:...

 and Bruce Weber
Bruce Weber (photographer)
Bruce Weber is an American fashion photographer and occasional filmmaker. He is most widely known for his ad campaigns for Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren, Pirelli, Abercrombie & Fitch, Revlon, and Gianni Versace, as well as his work for Vogue, GQ, Vanity Fair, Elle, Life, Interview, and Rolling Stone...

. The DVD also contained promo videos that had been made since the release of PopArt, although the promo for "Flamboyant" only appeared on early pressings of the DVD.

The second single to be taken from the album was the UK top twenty "Minimal
Minimal (song)
"Minimal" is a song by British synthpop band Pet Shop Boys and is featured on their 2006 album Fundamental. It was released 24 July 2006 as the second single from that album in the UK, entering the UK Singles Chart at #19 in the first week of its release . It was their 37th Top 20 hit in the UK...

". The duo filmed the video to the single in Paris with Dan Cameron
Dan Cameron
Dan Cameron is an American art curator based in New York City and New Orleans.Cameron's early years were spent in Virginia, Ohio and Kentucky and in Hudson Falls, NY. He attended Hudson Falls Public Schools , Syracuse University and Bennington College , where he earned a BA in 1979...

. The single was the first of theirs to be playlisted by London's biggest radio station, Capital Radio
Capital Radio
Capital London is a London based radio station which launched on 16 October 1973 and is owned by Global Radio. On 3 January 2011 it formed part of the nine station Capital radio network.- Pre-launch :...

, in a decade. Pet Shop Boys began a worldwide tour in support of Fundamental
Fundamental tour
Fundamental Tour was a concert tour by the Pet Shop Boys in support of their ninth studio album Fundamental.-Set list:* God Willing* Psychological* Left To My Own Devices* Suburbia* I'm With Stupid* Can You Forgive Her?* Rent* Minimal...

 in June 2006 in Norway. The show was designed and directed by Es Devlin, the award-winning British theatre designer, and choreographed by Hakeem Onibudo. Between 15 June and 10 September 2006, Pet Shop Boys played a series of concert dates across Europe, mainly at assorted festivals and outdoor venues. These included two dates at the Tower of London
Tower of London
Her Majesty's Royal Palace and Fortress, more commonly known as the Tower of London, is a historic castle on the north bank of the River Thames in central London, England. It lies within the London Borough of Tower Hamlets, separated from the eastern edge of the City of London by the open space...

 on 28 June and 29, and a single show at Thetford Forest
Thetford Forest
Thetford Forest is the largest lowland pine forest in Britain, Thetford Forest Park is located in a region straddling the north of Suffolk and the south of Norfolk in England...

. These dates also included performances of Battleship Potemkin, in Germany and Spain. On 1 May 2006, Battleship Potemkin was also performed at the Swan Hunter
Swan Hunter
Swan Hunter, formerly known as "Swan Hunter & Wigham Richardson", was one of the best known shipbuilding companies in the world. Based in Wallsend, Tyne and Wear, the company was responsible for some of the greatest ships of the early 20th century — most famously, the RMS Mauretania which...

 shipyard, in Newcastle upon Tyne
Newcastle upon Tyne
Newcastle upon Tyne is a city and metropolitan borough of Tyne and Wear, in North East England. Historically a part of Northumberland, it is situated on the north bank of the River Tyne...

, with Pet Shop Boys accompanied by the Northern Sinfonia
Northern Sinfonia
The Northern Sinfonia is a British chamber orchestra, based initially in Newcastle upon Tyne, and currently in Gateshead. For the first 46 years of its history, the orchestra gave the bulk of its concerts at the City Hall, Newcastle upon Tyne. Since 2004, the orchestra has been resident at The...

 orchestra.

On 3 October 2006, the long-delayed U.S. release of their PopArt hits package was issued by Capitol Records
Capitol Records
Capitol Records is a major United States based record label, formerly located in Los Angeles, but operating in New York City as part of Capitol Music Group. Its former headquarters building, the Capitol Tower, is a major landmark near the corner of Hollywood and Vine...

. During 2006, Pet Shop Boys worked with Robbie Williams
Robbie Williams
Robert Peter "Robbie" Williams is an English singer-songwriter, vocal coach and occasional actor. He is a member of the pop group Take That. Williams rose to fame in the band's first run in the early- to mid-1990s. After many disagreements with the management and certain group members, Williams...

 on his then-new album, Rudebox, producing two tracks: a cover version of "We're the Pet Shop Boys", written by My Robot Friend (which they have also recorded themselves and released as a B-side
A-side and B-side
A-side and B-side originally referred to the two sides of gramophone records on which singles were released beginning in the 1950s. The terms have come to refer to the types of song conventionally placed on each side of the record, with the A-side being the featured song , while the B-side, or...

 to "Miracles", in 2003) and "She's Madonna
She's Madonna
"She's Madonna" is the third and final international single released from Robbie Williams's seventh studio album Rudebox. A collaboration with the Pet Shop Boys, it is a love song to pop star Madonna and was released on 5 March 2007. A promotional copy was released to European radio in late January...

", a duet with Tennant, allegedly about Guy Ritchie
Guy Ritchie
Guy Stuart Ritchie is an English screenwriter and film maker who directed Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, Snatch, Revolver, RocknRolla and Sherlock Holmes.-Early life:...

's affair with Tania Strecker
Tania Strecker
Tania Strecker is a Danish model and television presenter in the UK.Her break into TV began with Channel 4's Naked Elvis, and she then co-hosted MTV's SELECT with Richard Blackwood...

, prior to his relationship with Madonna
Madonna (entertainer)
Madonna is an American singer-songwriter, actress and entrepreneur. Born in Bay City, Michigan, she moved to New York City in 1977 to pursue a career in modern dance. After performing in the music groups Breakfast Club and Emmy, she released her debut album in 1983...

. On 10 October 2006, Pet Shop Boys embarked on the North and Central American
Americas
The Americas, or America , are lands in the Western hemisphere, also known as the New World. In English, the plural form the Americas is often used to refer to the landmasses of North America and South America with their associated islands and regions, while the singular form America is primarily...

 leg of their world tour, which took them through Canada, the United States and Mexico, concluding on 16 November. A DVD of the show in Mexico City was released on 21 May 2007, entitled Cubism. It was recorded on 14 November 2006, in the Auditorio Nacional
National Auditorium
National Auditorium is an entertainment centre located at Paseo de la Reforma #50, Chapultepec in Mexico City right in front of the Polanco hotel zone next to Campo Marte....

, and was directed by David Barnard.

On 16 October, Catalogue was released from Thames & Hudson
Thames & Hudson
Thames & Hudson is a publisher of illustrated books on art, architecture, design, and visual culture. With its headquarters in London, England it has a sister company in New York and subsidiaries in Melbourne, Singapore and Hong Kong...

, a 336-page hardcover book, written by Philip Hoare
Philip Hoare
Philip Hoare is an English non-fiction writer and journalist. His 2008 book Leviathan won the 2009 Samuel Johnson Prize.-Bibliography:* Serious Pleasures: The Life of Stephen Tennant...

 and Chris Heath
Chris Heath
Chris Heath is a British writer who was a regular contributor to the popular English music magazine Smash Hits in the eighties and early nineties....

, detailing their entire visual output (photography, as well as the design of albums, videos, tours
Tours
Tours is a city in central France, the capital of the Indre-et-Loire department.It is located on the lower reaches of the river Loire, between Orléans and the Atlantic coast. Touraine, the region around Tours, is known for its wines, the alleged perfection of its local spoken French, and for the...

, books and fan club magazines
Fanzine
A fanzine is a nonprofessional and nonofficial publication produced by fans of a particular cultural phenomenon for the pleasure of others who share their interest...

) from 1984 to 2004. Neil Tennant comments in the book: "In the beginning we made a decision – and it was in our EMI
EMI
The EMI Group, also known as EMI Music or simply EMI, is a multinational music company headquartered in London, United Kingdom. It is the fourth-largest business group and family of record labels in the recording industry and one of the "big four" record companies. EMI Group also has a major...

 contract – that that we would have control over how everything worked; that obviously the songs mattered hugely, but the way they were presented was going to matter hugely as well; and that we were never going to give up on that." Pet Shop Boys supported the publication of the book with signings in London, New York City, Los Angeles and Berlin. To coincide with the publication of Catalogue, a small exhibition of portraits of Pet Shop Boys opened in the Bookshop Gallery of London's National Portrait Gallery, on 30 October 2006 and ran to 28 February 2007.

Also on 16 October, the third single from Fundamental
Fundamental (Pet Shop Boys album)
Fundamental is the sixteenth album, the ninth of entirely new music, by the British band Pet Shop Boys. It was released in May 2006 in the United Kingdom, Europe, Japan, and Canada, and was released in late June 2006 in the United States. The album entered the UK Albums Chart at number five on 28...

, "Numb
Numb (Pet Shop Boys song)
"Numb" is a song recorded by Pet Shop Boys and is featured on their album Fundamental. It was released on 16 October 2006 as the third single from that album, peaking at #23 in the UK Singles Chart...

", was released, following its appearance at the end of the BBC's coverage of England at the World Cup
FIFA World Cup
The FIFA World Cup, often simply the World Cup, is an international association football competition contested by the senior men's national teams of the members of Fédération Internationale de Football Association , the sport's global governing body...

. It was written by Diane Warren
Diane Warren
Diane Eve Warren , is a US songwriter. Her songs have received six Academy Award nominations, five Golden Globe nominations, including one win and seven Grammy Award nominations, including one win. She was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2001...

 and is the only song on the album not written by Tennant and Lowe. "Numb
Numb (Pet Shop Boys song)
"Numb" is a song recorded by Pet Shop Boys and is featured on their album Fundamental. It was released on 16 October 2006 as the third single from that album, peaking at #23 in the UK Singles Chart...

" became only the second Pet Shop Boys single in their career to miss the Top 20 since their 2 Bobby 'O' debut singles.

On 23 October 2006, Concrete
Concrete (Pet Shop Boys album)
Concrete is the seventeenth album by the British band Pet Shop Boys. It was released on 23 October 2006.Due to be called Concert, on 20 September 2006, Pet Shop Boys announced that the album was going to be called Concrete, which was the title that they originally wanted for the album...

was released. It is a double CD
Compact Disc
The Compact Disc is an optical disc used to store digital data. It was originally developed to store and playback sound recordings exclusively, but later expanded to encompass data storage , write-once audio and data storage , rewritable media , Video Compact Discs , Super Video Compact Discs ,...

 of the complete Mermaid Theatre
Mermaid Theatre
The Mermaid Theatre was a theatre at Puddle Dock, in Blackfriars, in the City of London and the first built there since the time of Shakespeare...

 concert, with the BBC Concert Orchestra
BBC Concert Orchestra
The BBC Concert Orchestra is a British orchestra based in London, one of the British Broadcasting Corporation's five radio orchestras. With around fifty players, it is the only one of the five which is not a full-scale symphony orchestra....

 (musical director: Trevor Horn), featuring guests Rufus Wainwright
Rufus Wainwright
Rufus McGarrigle Wainwright is an American-Canadian singer-songwriter. He has recorded six albums of original music, EPs, and tracks on compilations and film soundtracks.-Early years:...

, Frances Barber
Frances Barber
Frances Barber is an Olivier Award-nominated English actress with a long and distinguished stage career. She has also appeared in numerous television productions...

 and Robbie Williams
Robbie Williams
Robert Peter "Robbie" Williams is an English singer-songwriter, vocal coach and occasional actor. He is a member of the pop group Take That. Williams rose to fame in the band's first run in the early- to mid-1990s. After many disagreements with the management and certain group members, Williams...

. A 90 minute "director's cut" of the concert aired on BBC 6 Music, on 28 August 2006. On 7 December 2006, Pet Shop Boys were nominated for two 2007 Grammy Awards. These were 'Best Dance Recording' for "I'm with Stupid", and 'Best Electronic/Dance Album' for Fundamental
Fundamental (Pet Shop Boys album)
Fundamental is the sixteenth album, the ninth of entirely new music, by the British band Pet Shop Boys. It was released in May 2006 in the United Kingdom, Europe, Japan, and Canada, and was released in late June 2006 in the United States. The album entered the UK Albums Chart at number five on 28...

.

During the latter part of 2006 and early 2007, Neil Tennant served as executive producer on Rufus Wainwright
Rufus Wainwright
Rufus McGarrigle Wainwright is an American-Canadian singer-songwriter. He has recorded six albums of original music, EPs, and tracks on compilations and film soundtracks.-Early years:...

's new album, Release the Stars
Release the Stars
Release the Stars is the fifth studio album by Canadian-American singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright, released through Geffen Records on May 15, 2007. Pet Shop Boys' Neil Tennant was the executive in charge of production, and the album was mixed by producers Marius de Vries and Andy Bradfield...

, recorded in Berlin. He also sang backing vocals on a number of tracks, most notably on "Do I Disappoint You
Release the Stars
Release the Stars is the fifth studio album by Canadian-American singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright, released through Geffen Records on May 15, 2007. Pet Shop Boys' Neil Tennant was the executive in charge of production, and the album was mixed by producers Marius de Vries and Andy Bradfield...

", and "Tiergarten
Release the Stars
Release the Stars is the fifth studio album by Canadian-American singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright, released through Geffen Records on May 15, 2007. Pet Shop Boys' Neil Tennant was the executive in charge of production, and the album was mixed by producers Marius de Vries and Andy Bradfield...

". In February 2007, Pet Shop Boys' 'Stars Are Blazing' remix of The Killers' "Read My Mind" was released.

Pet Shop Boys continued their world tour, albeit with a slightly different production and set-list, on 14 March 2007, in Rio de Janeiro
Rio de Janeiro
Rio de Janeiro , commonly referred to simply as Rio, is the capital city of the State of Rio de Janeiro, the second largest city of Brazil, and the third largest metropolitan area and agglomeration in South America, boasting approximately 6.3 million people within the city proper, making it the 6th...

, Brazil then played concerts in Argentina
Argentina
Argentina , officially the Argentine Republic , is the second largest country in South America by land area, after Brazil. It is constituted as a federation of 23 provinces and an autonomous city, Buenos Aires...

, Chile, New Zealand and Australia (as co-headliners of the V Festival
V Festival
The V Festival is an annual music festival held in England during the penultimate weekend in August. The event is held at two parks simultaneously which share the same bill; artists perform at one location on Saturday and then swap on Sunday. The sites are located at Hylands Park in Chelmsford and...

 2007), Norway, Estonia
Estonia
Estonia , officially the Republic of Estonia , is a state in the Baltic region of Northern Europe. It is bordered to the north by the Gulf of Finland, to the west by the Baltic Sea, to the south by Latvia , and to the east by Lake Peipsi and the Russian Federation . Across the Baltic Sea lies...

, Latvia, Lithuania
Lithuania
Lithuania , officially the Republic of Lithuania is a country in Northern Europe, the biggest of the three Baltic states. It is situated along the southeastern shore of the Baltic Sea, whereby to the west lie Sweden and Denmark...

, Germany, Switzerland, France, the Netherlands, Great Britain, Denmark, Ireland, Sweden, Italy, Spain, Belgium and Singapore
Singapore
Singapore , officially the Republic of Singapore, is a Southeast Asian city-state off the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula, north of the equator. An island country made up of 63 islands, it is separated from Malaysia by the Straits of Johor to its north and from Indonesia's Riau Islands by the...

. Pet Shop Boys "played" at the free festival Secondfest
Secondfest
Secondfest is a music festival in the Second Life virtual world. Unlike other musical performances on the web which provide audio through individual web pages for listeners to enjoy by themselves, Secondfest offers an on-line community the ability to experience entertainment together, in a large...

, in the online virtual world
Virtual world
A virtual world is an online community that takes the form of a computer-based simulated environment through which users can interact with one another and use and create objects. The term has become largely synonymous with interactive 3D virtual environments, where the users take the form of...

 Second Life
Second Life
Second Life is an online virtual world developed by Linden Lab. It was launched on June 23, 2003. A number of free client programs, or Viewers, enable Second Life users, called Residents, to interact with each other through avatars...

, on 30 June.

On 8 October 2007, Pet Shop Boys released Disco 4
Disco 4
Disco 4 also known as Disco Four is the eighteenth album by the UK electronic music duo Pet Shop Boys and the fourth in the band's "Disco" series. It was released on October 8, 2007, on compact disc and vinyl...

, the latest in their series of remix album
Remix album
A remix album is an album consisting mostly of remixes or re-recorded versions of a music artists' earlier released material.One of the earliest remix albums was 1971's Aerial Pandemonium Ballet by Harry Nilsson, which was released by Nilsson after the successes of Everybody's Talkin and The Point!...

s; the fourth in the set differed in that it was largely made up of remixes, completed by Pet Shop Boys, of other artists' work over the past decade. These include The Killers, David Bowie
David Bowie
David Bowie is an English musician, actor, record producer and arranger. A major figure for over four decades in the world of popular music, Bowie is widely regarded as an innovator, particularly for his work in the 1970s...

, Yoko Ono
Yoko Ono
is a Japanese artist, musician, author and peace activist, known for her work in avant-garde art, music and filmmaking as well as her marriage to John Lennon...

, Madonna
Madonna (entertainer)
Madonna is an American singer-songwriter, actress and entrepreneur. Born in Bay City, Michigan, she moved to New York City in 1977 to pursue a career in modern dance. After performing in the music groups Breakfast Club and Emmy, she released her debut album in 1983...

, Atomizer
Atomizer (band)
Atomizer is a synthpop duo featuring Nag Nag Nag founder and veteran musician and DJ Jonny Slut with fellow Nag Nag Nag DJ Fil OK. Their debut single was co-produced by the KLF's Jimmy Cauty.-Singles:...

 and Rammstein
Rammstein
Rammstein is a German Neue Deutsche Härte band from Berlin, formed in 1994. The band consists of members Till Lindemann , Richard Z. Kruspe , Paul H. Landers , Oliver "Ollie" Riedel , Christoph "Doom" Schneider and Christian "Flake" Lorenz...

. Only two tracks by Pet Shop Boys, remixed versions of Fundamental
Fundamental (Pet Shop Boys album)
Fundamental is the sixteenth album, the ninth of entirely new music, by the British band Pet Shop Boys. It was released in May 2006 in the United Kingdom, Europe, Japan, and Canada, and was released in late June 2006 in the United States. The album entered the UK Albums Chart at number five on 28...

tracks "Integral
Integral (song)
"Integral" is a 2007 single by British synth pop duo Pet Shop Boys, released in an electronic download-only format on 8th October. It was the only single and to promote the band's remix album Disco 4 in 2007....

" and "I'm with Stupid", were included. The Fundamental tour ended in Bucharest
Bucharest
Bucharest is the capital municipality, cultural, industrial, and financial centre of Romania. It is the largest city in Romania, located in the southeast of the country, at , and lies on the banks of the Dâmbovița River....

, Romania, in November 2007.

On October 2008, Pet Shop Boys released the single "I'm in Love with a German Film Star" featuring famous British photographer Sam Taylor-Wood
Sam Taylor-Wood
Samantha "Sam" Taylor-Wood OBE , born Samantha Taylor, is an English filmmaker, photographer, and visual artist. Her directorial feature film debut came in 2009 with Nowhere Boy, a film based on the childhood experiences of The Beatles songwriter and singer John Lennon...

 on vocals. This single was made for her exhibition in London and it was released by Kompakt records in Germany, on both CD and 7" and 12" vinyl. The most notable remixes were by Gui Boratto, Juergen Paape and Mark Reeder
Mark Reeder
Mark Reeder grew up in Manchester, England. He is a musician and record producer. At a young age, Reeder became interested in progressive rock and especially early electronic music. In his teens, he worked in a small Virgin Records store in Manchester city centre.Reeder has been living and working...

, who also made a special mix in 5.1 surround.

Yes, Pandemonium Tour, Ultimate and Ballet: 2009–2011

Pet Shop Boys completed their newest album in late 2008. Recorded with Xenomania
Xenomania
Xenomania is a British songwriting and production team founded by Brian Higgins and based in Kent, England. Formed after Higgins met Miranda Cooper, Xenomania has written and produced for renowned artists such as Cher, Kylie Minogue, Dannii Minogue, Pet Shop Boys, and Sugababes...

 and released in UK on 23 March 2009, Yes
Yes (Pet Shop Boys album)
Yes is the tenth studio album by English electronic duo Pet Shop Boys. The album was recorded throughout 2008 and is produced by Brian Higgins and his production team Xenomania. Xenomania also co-wrote three of the tracks. Guitarist Johnny Marr and string arranger Owen Pallett appear as well...

was a critical success and hit #4 in the UK, their highest album chart position in more than a decade. Pet Shop Boys also appeared on Girls Aloud
Girls Aloud
Girls Aloud are a British and Irish pop girl group based in London. They were created through the ITV1 talent show Popstars The Rivals in 2002. The group consists of Cheryl Cole , Nadine Coyle, Sarah Harding, Nicola Roberts and Kimberley Walsh. They are signed to Fascination Records, a Polydor...

's new album Out of Control
Out of Control (Girls Aloud album)
Out of Control is the fifth studio album by British all-female pop group Girls Aloud. It was released in the United Kingdom on 3 November 2008 by Fascination Records. Like their previous albums, Out of Control was crafted by the production team of Brian Higgins and Xenomania...

, collaborating on the Top-10 track "The Loving Kind
The Loving Kind
"The Loving Kind" is a song performed by British girl group Girls Aloud, taken from their fifth studio album Out of Control . The song was written by Pet Shop Boys, Miranda Cooper, Brian Higgins and his production team Xenomania, and produced by Higgins and Xenomania...

", released on 12 January 2009 as a single.

In February 2009 Pet Shop Boys received the British Phonographic Industry's most prestigious accolade, the award for outstanding contribution to British music, at the 2009 Brit Awards ceremony held at the Earls Court Arena in London. During the performance at this show, Pet Shop Boys collaborated with Lady Gaga
Lady GaGa
Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta , better known by her stage name Lady Gaga, is an American singer and songwriter. Born and raised in New York City, she primarily studied at the Convent of the Sacred Heart and briefly attended New York University's Tisch School of the Arts before withdrawing to...

 and Brandon Flowers
Brandon Flowers
Brandon Richard Flowers is an American musician, best known as the frontman of the Las Vegas-based rock band The Killers. He has also released a solo album titled Flamingo.-Early life:...

 (of The Killers). This led to their collection album PopArt charting at number 18 on the UK albums chart, higher than when it was originally released.

On 22 March 2009, the first single from the album "Love etc.
Love etc.
"Love etc." is a song by English electronic duo Pet Shop Boys from their tenth studio album, Yes . It was released on 16 March 2009 as the album's lead single...

" charted in the UK at number 14, and on 29 March 2009, Yes charted at number 4. Subsequent singles released from the album were "Did You See Me Coming?
Did you see me coming?
"Did You See Me Coming?" is a song written and recorded by Pet Shop Boys, released 1 June 2009, as the second single from their tenth studio album Yes. It peaked at #21 on the UK singles chart....

" and the Germany-exclusive "Beautiful People
Beautiful People (Pet Shop Boys song)
"Beautiful People" is a song written and recorded by Pet Shop Boys, and was released on 25 September 2009, as the third single from their tenth studio album Yes. This single was released in Germany only first, at the request of EMI Germany...

". The two internationally-released singles from Yes, "Love etc" and "Did You See Me Coming?", both hit the top spot on the US Dance Chart, their ninth and tenth #1s on that chart.

A new official website was also released in 2009 following the new album and tour. The design maintained many aspects used on the previous site made by London based design company Airside.
The site contains many photos, news updates and a feature introduced on the previous site incarnation known as 'Pet Texts' where both Neil and Chris can send in a message from their phones which automatically appears on the website for public viewing. They also used social networking site Twitter
Twitter
Twitter is an online social networking and microblogging service that enables its users to send and read text-based posts of up to 140 characters, informally known as "tweets".Twitter was created in March 2006 by Jack Dorsey and launched that July...

 for a short period before returning to only 'Pet Texts'.

On 10 June 2009, Pet Shop Boys started the summer leg of their Pandemonium Tour
Pandemonium Tour
The Pandemonium Tour was a worldwide concert tour by British pop duo Pet Shop Boys in support of their tenth studio album Yes. The tour visited Europe, Asia and the Americas.-Set list:...

 in Saint Petersburg, Russia and ended on 21 July 2009 in Tel Aviv, Israel, playing the Manchester Apollo
Manchester Apollo
O2 Apollo Manchester is a concert venue in Manchester, England. Locally known as The Apollo, it is a listed building, with a capacity of 3,500 ....

 and a sold-out gig at O2 Arena
The O2 (London)
The O2, visually typeset in branding as The O2, is a large entertainment district on the Greenwich peninsula in South East London, England, including an indoor arena, a music club, a Cineworld cinema, an exhibition space, piazzas, bars and restaurants...

 on 18 and 19 June 2009 respectively. The second leg of the tour started on 29 August 2009 at the Metropolis, in Montreal
Montreal
Montreal is a city in Canada. It is the largest city in the province of Quebec, the second-largest city in Canada and the seventh largest in North America...

, Canada
Canada
Canada is a North American country consisting of ten provinces and three territories. Located in the northern part of the continent, it extends from the Atlantic Ocean in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west, and northward into the Arctic Ocean...

.

The Pandemonium Tour showcases songs from previous album Yes as well as older songs such as "West End Girls", "It's a Sin" and "Always on My Mind
Always on My Mind
"Always on My Mind" is an American country music song by Johnny Christopher, Mark James and Wayne Carson, originally recorded by Brenda Lee in 1972.Allmusic lists over 300 recorded releases of the song in versions by dozens of performers...

". The tour also showcases songs that have not been performed live in the past, such as "Two Divided by Zero", "Why Don't We Live Together?" and the B-side "Do I Have To?".

On 4 November 2009, Pet Shop Boys celebrated the Brazilian leg of the tour by releasing a compilation entitled Party
Party (Pet Shop Boys album)
Party is a compilation album by Pet Shop Boys released exclusively in Brazil on 4 November 2009.The album was released to coincide with the Brazilian leg of their 2009 Pandemonium tour. The album includes both past hits and some newer material...

, including songs that were heavily featured in the following TV Globo soap operas: "Being boring" (Meu Bem Meu Mal OST), "Domino dancing" (O Salvador da Patria OST), "West End Girls" (Selva de Pedra OST) and "King of Rome" (Viver a Vida
Viver a Vida
Viver a Vida is a Brazilian telenovela , broadcast by Rede Globo at 9 P.M. It is written by Manoel Carlos in collaboration with Ângela Chaves, Cláudia Lage, Daisy Chaves, Juliana Perez and Maria Carolina. The telenovela is directed by Teresa Lamprey, Frederico Mayrink, Luciano Sabino, Leonardo...

). On 14 December 2009, Pet Shop Boys released an EP
Extended play
An EP is a musical recording which contains more music than a single, but is too short to qualify as a full album or LP. The term EP originally referred only to specific types of vinyl records other than 78 rpm standard play records and LP records, but it is now applied to mid-length Compact...

 of covers, remixes, and new material, titled Christmas. On 20 December the EP entered the UK chart at #40.

On 15 February 2010, Pet Shop Boys released a live album/DVD double-pack called Pandemonium
Pandemonium (Pet Shop Boys album)
Pandemonium is a live album by English electronic duo Pet Shop Boys, released on 15 February 2010 as a CD/DVD combo...

. It contains the soundtrack and footage recorded from their 21 December 2009 show at the O2 Arena
The O2 (London)
The O2, visually typeset in branding as The O2, is a large entertainment district on the Greenwich peninsula in South East London, England, including an indoor arena, a music club, a Cineworld cinema, an exhibition space, piazzas, bars and restaurants...

 in London. The recording entered the UK albums chart at 29 and hit the number one spot on the "Electro and Synth" chart on both the UK and US versions of Amazon.

In January 2010, it was announced through the band's Twitter profile
Twitter
Twitter is an online social networking and microblogging service that enables its users to send and read text-based posts of up to 140 characters, informally known as "tweets".Twitter was created in March 2006 by Jack Dorsey and launched that July...

 that they were back in the studio recording.

In April 2010, as part of Record Store Day 2010 celebrations, Pet Shop Boys released their version of "Love life
Love Life (song)
"Love Life" is a Pet Shop Boys song originally performed and released by the Swedish band Alcazar. It was the fourth single to be taken from their #2 album Alcazarized. The song was originally titled "Can I Be the One?", and was demoed by Pet Shop Boys themselves...

", a song they originally recorded during the Release sessions in 2001 and subsequently gave to Swedish band Alcazar
Alcazar (band)
Alcazar is a Swedish eurodance group which has established themselves as one of Sweden's most successful music groups with a string of hits since their debut single in 1999. Worldwide, Alcazar sold over 12 million records between 2001 and 2004...

. Released as a limited edition 7-inch dinked vinyl single available only in independent UK record stores, its B-side was "A Powerful Friend", a song originally composed in the early 1980s and subsequently recorded in late 2002 during the recording sessions that would contribute to the Disco 3
Disco 3
Not to be confused with The Fat Boys, whose original name was The Disco 3.Disco 3 is the thirteenth album by the UK electronic music duo Pet Shop Boys. It was released in 2003...

album.

In June 2010 Pet Shop Boys headlined the Other Stage on the Saturday evening of the Glastonbury Festival and were heralded as dazzling with "one of the most spectacular Glastonbury moments ever."

On 1 November 2010, Pet Shop Boys released Ultimate
Ultimate (Pet Shop Boys album)
Ultimate is a greatest hits compilation album by UK electronic music band Pet Shop Boys. It is their third greatest hits album, released on 1 November 2010 by their long-time label Parlophone. The album contains 18 previously-released singles, in chronological order, and one new song...

, a single CD greatest hits album. This precedes their most recently released single "Together
Together (Pet Shop Boys song)
"Together" is a 2010 single by British electronic dance music band Pet Shop Boys released to promote their 2010 greatest hits album, Ultimate. It was released on Parlophone Records as a digital download on 24 October and as a physical release on 29 November 2010.The song received its first play on...

".

On 15 November 2010, tickets went on sale for the Pet Shop Boys' second foray into British theatre, this time for a ballet. An adaptation of The Most Incredible Thing
The Most Incredible Thing
“The Most Incredible Thing" is a literary fairy tale by Danish poet and author Hans Christian Andersen . The story is about a contest to find the most incredible thing and the wondrous consequences when the winner is chosen...

, a fairy tale by Hans Christian Andersen
Hans Christian Andersen
Hans Christian Andersen was a Danish author, fairy tale writer, and poet noted for his children's stories. These include "The Steadfast Tin Soldier," "The Snow Queen," "The Little Mermaid," "Thumbelina," "The Little Match Girl," and "The Ugly Duckling."...

, opened at Sadlers Wells in London on 17 March 2011. The story has been adapted by Matthew Dunster and features choreography by Javier de Frutos
Javier de Frutos
Javier de Frutos is a Venezuelan dancer and choreographer, best known for his award-winning work in the 2007 West End revival of Cabaret.-References: -External links:...

. It features former Royal Ballet star Ivan Putrov
Ivan Putrov
Ivan Putrov is a Ukrainian-born ballet dancer, an independent dance artist, he was a principal dancer with The Royal Ballet from 2002 until July 2010.- Biography :...

, animated films created by Tal Rosner
Tal Rosner
Tal Rosner is a London based filmmaker and video artist.Rosner is a graduate of Bezalel Academy of Art and Design in Jerusalem and Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in London ....

, and orchestrations by German composer Sven Helbig
Sven Helbig
Sven Helbig is a German composer, director and music producer.- Bio :In 1996, Sven Helbig and hornist Markus Rindt founded the Dresden Symphony Orchestra. The orchestra is specialized in new, symphonic music in unusual productions and was the first European symphony orchestra to exclusively...

, who worked with the band in 2005 as a co-producer for Battleship Potemkin.

On 4 April 2011, it was announced that Pet Shop Boys would tour with Take That
Take That
Take That are a British five-piece vocal pop group comprising Gary Barlow, Howard Donald, Jason Orange, Mark Owen and Robbie Williams. Barlow acts as the lead singer and primary songwriter...

 on their Progress Live
Progress Live
Progress Live was the eighth concert tour by British male vocal group Take That. The tour, sponsored by Samsung, supported their sixth studio album, Progress as they visited the biggest cities in the UK and Europe. It was the first tour wherein all five original members will perform since 1995...

 tour, and that while doing so, they would be writing new songs.

New album, Format: 2011 onwards

On 28 September 2011, Pet Shop Boys announced that they had written 16 songs for their next studio album, and they expected to start recording the new songs in November 2011 for release in 2012 Autumn. In the meantime, Format, an album of the duo's B-sides from 1996 to 2009 will be released in February 2012 as a sequel to their earlier release, Alternative
Alternative (album)
Alternative is the ninth album by UK electronic music duo Pet Shop Boys. It was first released in 1995.Alternative is a 2-disc set, consisting of 30 B-sides in chronological order...

.

On 21 November 2011, the Beyond Theatre Award, the new award of Evening Standard Award, was presented to the Pet Shop Boys and the director of The Most Incredible Thing
The Most Incredible Thing (album)
The Most Incredible Thing is the score for the 2011 ballet of the same name, based on the eponymous 1870 fairy tale by Danish author Hans Christian Andersen. It contains music written and performed by Neil Tennant and Chris Lowe of English electronic duo Pet Shop Boys...

, Javier de Frutos
Javier de Frutos
Javier de Frutos is a Venezuelan dancer and choreographer, best known for his award-winning work in the 2007 West End revival of Cabaret.-References: -External links:...

. The award was introduced and presented by the artist and film director (and PSB collaborator) Sam Taylor-Wood
Sam Taylor-Wood
Samantha "Sam" Taylor-Wood OBE , born Samantha Taylor, is an English filmmaker, photographer, and visual artist. Her directorial feature film debut came in 2009 with Nowhere Boy, a film based on the childhood experiences of The Beatles songwriter and singer John Lennon...

.

Band dynamic

Pet Shop Boys maintain consistent public personalities—in interviews Tennant appears cerebral, articulate and loquacious; while Lowe, now almost always seen in his trademark attire of hat and sunglasses (since as early as 1985), appears guarded yet fun-loving, terse yet flippant and casual. They have maintained a consistent pattern for interviews, in which Tennant is the primary speaker, answering questions at length, while occasionally being interrupted by brief, generally humorous interjections from Lowe (which is comparable to the concept of a comedic
Comedy
Comedy , as a popular meaning, is any humorous discourse or work generally intended to amuse by creating laughter, especially in television, film, and stand-up comedy. This must be carefully distinguished from its academic definition, namely the comic theatre, whose Western origins are found in...

 double act
Double act
A double act, also known as a comedy duo, is a comic pairing in which humor is derived from the uneven relationship between two partners, usually of the same gender, age, ethnic origin and profession, but drastically different personalities or behavior...

).

They have also been seen as wilfully contrary, defying expectations of record label
Record label
In the music industry, a record label is a brand and a trademark associated with the marketing of music recordings and music videos. Most commonly, a record label is the company that manages such brands and trademarks, coordinates the production, manufacture, distribution, marketing and promotion,...

s and the music industry in terms of commercial image, self-promotion and the nature of their own music. In their early years, Pet Shop Boys seemed to be mostly defined by the things they refused to do. A 1986 quotation by Lowe, taken from an Entertainment Tonight
Entertainment Tonight
Entertainment Tonight is a daily tabloid television entertainment television news show that is syndicated by CBS Television Distribution throughout the United States, Canada and in many countries around the world. Linda Bell Blue is currently the program's executive producer...

clip and subsequently sampled
Sampling (music)
In music, sampling is the act of taking a portion, or sample, of one sound recording and reusing it as an instrument or a different sound recording of a song or piece. Sampling was originally developed by experimental musicians working with musique concrète and electroacoustic music, who physically...

 in their own song "Paninaro
Paninaro (song)
"Paninaro" is a song by English synthpop duo Pet Shop Boys. Originally a B-side to the 1986 single "Suburbia", it was released as a limited-edition single in Italy during the same year; later, in 1995, a re-recording entitled "Paninaro '95" was released to a wider market, to promote the B-side...

", is often cited as the prime example of this:

This also formed the foundation of the band's early reputation as being anti-rock music and more properly aligned with disco and dance music
Dance music
Dance music is music composed specifically to facilitate or accompany dancing. It can be either a whole musical piece or part of a larger musical arrangement...

 culture. (See, e.g., their appropriately titled 1997 B-side, "How I Learned to Hate Rock and Roll" and their 1991 song "DJ Culture
DJ Culture
"DJ Culture" is the first single released by British electronic music group Pet Shop Boys from their singles collection album Discography: The Complete Singles Collection. The single peaked at #13 on the UK Singles Chart in 1991...

".) Eventually, however, these differences were reconciled—a process that symbolically culminated with Pet Shop Boys' performance at the 2000 Glastonbury Festival
Glastonbury Festival
The Glastonbury Festival of Contemporary Performing Arts, commonly abbreviated to Glastonbury or even Glasto, is a performing arts festival that takes place near Pilton, Somerset, England, best known for its contemporary music, but also for dance, comedy, theatre, circus, cabaret and other arts.The...

, which was the surprise highlight of the three-day event. Tennant expressed his gratitude to the crowd by thanking them for "being kind to us", as they were "Glastonbury virgins".

Image

This band dynamic has played a role in their public image as well. Early in their career, the duo were frequently accused of lacking stage presence, said to be a deliberate reaction to the hyper-cheerful music of the time, demonstrated by bands such as Wham!
WHAM!
Wham! were a short-lived British musical duo formed by George Michael and Andrew Ridgeley in the early 1980s. They were briefly known in the United States as Wham! UK due to a naming conflict with an American band....

. A typical early performance featured Lowe in the background playing the bassline on a Fairlight
Fairlight CMI
The Fairlight CMI is a digital sampling synthesizer. It was designed in 1979 by the founders of Fairlight, Peter Vogel and Kim Ryrie, and based on a dual-6800 microprocessor computer designed by Tony Furse in Sydney, Australia...

 synthesiser keyboard and Tennant singing, but otherwise passive, in the foreground.

However, when they first began touring, in 1989, they were heavily influenced by opera and theatre staging. Derek Jarman
Derek Jarman
Michael Derek Elworthy Jarman was an English film director, stage designer, diarist, artist, gardener and author.-Life:...

 staged their first tour, making a series of films to be projected behind the costumed singers and dancers. In 1991, they brought in David Alden and David Fielding, from the English National Opera
English National Opera
English National Opera is an opera company based in London, resident at the London Coliseum in St. Martin's Lane. It is one of the two principal opera companies in London, along with the Royal Opera, Covent Garden...

, to create the staging and costume design, for a show which made little attempt to involve or even acknowledge the audience and pushed the choreography and staging
Staging (theatre)
Staging is the process of selecting, designing, adapting to, or modifying the performance space for a play or film. This includes the use or absence of stagecraft elements as well as the structure of the stage and its components....

 centre stage. Subsequent tours have used artist Sam Taylor-Wood
Sam Taylor-Wood
Samantha "Sam" Taylor-Wood OBE , born Samantha Taylor, is an English filmmaker, photographer, and visual artist. Her directorial feature film debut came in 2009 with Nowhere Boy, a film based on the childhood experiences of The Beatles songwriter and singer John Lennon...

 and architect Zaha Hadid
Zaha Hadid
Zaha Hadid, CBE is an Iraqi-British architect.-Life and career:Hadid was born in 1950 in Baghdad, Iraq. She received a degree in mathematics from the American University of Beirut before moving to study at the Architectural Association School of Architecture in London.After graduating she worked...

 for stage design. The Fundamentalism tour in 2006–2007 was conceived and designed by theatre designer Es Devlin, with choreography by Hakeem Onibudo. Es Devlin also conceived the 2009–2010 Pandemonium Tour.

Typically, Pet Shop Boys have favoured avant-garde
Avant-garde
Avant-garde means "advance guard" or "vanguard". The adjective form is used in English to refer to people or works that are experimental or innovative, particularly with respect to art, culture, and politics....

 tailored fashions. Tennant has referenced the designers of his suits in certain interviews and Lowe has often sported outfits and glasses made by Issey Miyake
Issey Miyake
is a Japanese fashion designer. He is known for his technology-driven clothing designs, exhibitions and fragrances.-Life and career:Miyake was born 22 April 1938 in Hiroshima, Japan. As a seven year-old, he witnessed and survived the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima on August 6, 1945. He studied...

, Stüssy
Stussy
Stussy, or Stüssy , is a clothing brand and private company started in the early 1980s by Shawn Stussy. The company is one of many that benefited from the surfwear trend originating in Orange County, California, United States but has largely been adopted by the streetwear and hip-hop...

 and Yohji Yamamoto
Yohji Yamamoto
Yōji Yamamoto , is an award winning Japanese fashion designer based in Tokyo and Paris. Yohji is considered to be among the master tailors whose work is thought to be of fashion genius and he has been described by Julie Gilhart, fashion director for Barney's New York as probably the only designer...

's Y-3 for Adidas
Adidas
Adidas AG is a German sports apparel manufacturer and parent company of the Adidas Group, which consists of the Reebok sportswear company, TaylorMade-Adidas golf company , and Rockport...

. Presentation has always been a major theme for Pet Shop Boys and the duo have dramatically "re-invented" their image twice in their career. In 1993, when promoting their Very album, they wore brightly coloured costumes and used state-of-the-art computer technology to place themselves in a modern computer graphic world. This concept of re-invention was revisited for the promotion of their Nightlife album, in which they transformed their look, wearing wigs and glasses, with stylised futuristic urban wardrobes. In 2006, both Tennant and Lowe were seen on stage and in photographs wearing clothes designed by Hedi Slimane
Hedi Slimane
Hedi Slimane is a French fashion designer of Tunisian, Italian-Brazilian origins. He studied political sciences , and Art History at the École du Louvre, and was also educated as a tailor...

/Dior Homme
Dior Homme
Dior Homme is the menswear division of Christian Dior SA, the French clothing retailer. Dior Homme is currently under the creative direction of Kris Van Assche since spring/summer 2008...

.

The duo have always been interested in the artwork
Cover art
Cover art is the illustration or photograph on the outside of a published product such as a book , magazine, comic book, video game , DVD, CD, videotape, or music album. The art has a primarily commercial function, i.e...

, design and photography of their own releases. Photographer Eric Watson
Eric Watson (photographer)
Eric Watson is an English photographer.Watson moved to London in 1974 to study fine art at Hornsey Art College, where his contemporaries included Adam Ant and became an assistant to the photographer Red Saunders in 1980 and soon branched out as a photographer in his own right, primarily in the pop...

 helped shape the original image of Pet Shop Boys, creating many of their photographs
Photography
Photography is the art, science and practice of creating durable images by recording light or other electromagnetic radiation, either electronically by means of an image sensor or chemically by means of a light-sensitive material such as photographic film...

 and videos
Music video
A music video or song video is a short film integrating a song and imagery, produced for promotional or artistic purposes. Modern music videos are primarily made and used as a marketing device intended to promote the sale of music recordings...

 from 1984 to 1991. In design they have primarily worked with Mark Farrow
Mark Farrow
Mark Farrow was named Designer of the Year in the Creative Review Peer Poll in 2004, voting him ‘the most important graphic designer working today’. His career began in the early 1980s designing experimental sleeves and posters for Factory Records, and The Haçienda, which placed him at the...

, who designed the cover
Cover art
Cover art is the illustration or photograph on the outside of a published product such as a book , magazine, comic book, video game , DVD, CD, videotape, or music album. The art has a primarily commercial function, i.e...

 of their first Parlophone
Parlophone
Parlophone is a record label that was founded in Germany in 1896 by the Carl Lindström Company as Parlophon. The British branch was formed in 1923 as "Parlophone" which developed a reputation in the 1920s as a leading jazz label. It was acquired in 1927 by the Columbia Graphophone Company which...

 album release in 1986. The collaboration between Mark Farrow and Pet Shop Boys is comparable to the designer/band relationship of Peter Saville and New Order
New Order
New Order are an English rock band formed in 1980 by Bernard Sumner , Peter Hook and Stephen Morris...

, Anton Corbijn
Anton Corbijn
Anton Corbijn is a Dutch photographer, music video and film director. He is the creative director behind the visual output of Depeche Mode and U2, having handled the principal promotion and sleeve photography for both for more than a decade...

 and Depeche Mode
Depeche Mode
Depeche Mode are an English electronic music band formed in 1980 in Basildon, Essex. The group's original line-up consisted of Dave Gahan , Martin Gore , Andy Fletcher and Vince Clarke...

, or the epic-length collaboration of Simon Halfon
Simon Halfon
Simon Halfon is a graphic designer most noted for his work with The Jam, The Style Council, and Paul Weller. Halfon has also worked with Oasis and George Michael, among others. Halfon's most visible work has focused on solid inspiration from the design of the 1960s. He has, however, displayed...

 and Paul Weller. Their record sleeve
Record sleeve
A record sleeve is the outer covering of a vinyl recording. The sleeve is technically the paper covering that is closest in contact to the surface of the recording, as in "dust sleeve", "liner" and "album liner". The term has come to be synonymous with "record jacket" and "album jacket", which is...

s are quite often very minimal
Minimalism
Minimalism describes movements in various forms of art and design, especially visual art and music, where the work is set out to expose the essence, essentials or identity of a subject through eliminating all non-essential forms, features or concepts...

 and the attention to detail is obvious. In October 2006, British art publisher Thames & Hudson published a 336-page hardcover book entitled Pet Shop Boys Catalogue, by Chris Heath
Chris Heath
Chris Heath is a British writer who was a regular contributor to the popular English music magazine Smash Hits in the eighties and early nineties....

 and Philip Hoare
Philip Hoare
Philip Hoare is an English non-fiction writer and journalist. His 2008 book Leviathan won the 2009 Samuel Johnson Prize.-Bibliography:* Serious Pleasures: The Life of Stephen Tennant...

, showcasing the group's accomplishments in artwork, design and music. A German-language edition was also published. An exhibition of photographs of Pet Shop Boys was organised at the National Portrait Gallery in London to coincide with the publication.

Even the band's fan base has been subject to commentary. In 2001, music theorist Fred Maus wrote that, contrary to the ideologies of anti-commercialism and authenticity
Authenticity (philosophy)
Authenticity is a technical term in existentialist philosophy, and is also used in the philosophy of art and psychology. In philosophy, the conscious self is seen as coming to terms with being in a material world and with encountering external forces, pressures and influences which are very...

 embodied by "serious" discussions of popular music
Popular music
Popular music belongs to any of a number of musical genres "having wide appeal" and is typically distributed to large audiences through the music industry. It stands in contrast to both art music and traditional music, which are typically disseminated academically or orally to smaller, local...

 such as rock, Pet Shop Boys fans exhibit "an undisguised love of commercial success". This was demonstrated through mailing list
Mailing list
A mailing list is a collection of names and addresses used by an individual or an organization to send material to multiple recipients. The term is often extended to include the people subscribed to such a list, so the group of subscribers is referred to as "the mailing list", or simply "the...

 discussions from 1998 onwards, in which fans voiced concern over the "most commercially promising selection and marketing of singles" for the then-upcoming Nightlife, and debated the quality of the then-recent Bilingual, spurred by the album's poorer performance in sales. Most posters, Maus summarised, feared that the band's appeal would become essentially limited to a cult following
Cult following
A cult following is a group of fans who are highly dedicated to a specific area of pop culture. A film, book, band, or video game, among other things, will be said to have a cult following when it has a small but very passionate fan base...

; "dissent, along the lines that the fans would always have the Pet Shop Boys, no matter what happened commercially, was scarce and ineffectual". Noting the fact that Pet Shop Boys "began their career with hits", Maus made the point that this early success was valued by fans: the band's "large audiences" were just as important to "many fans" as the making of "distinctive music that individual fans loved".

Live performances

In a 1991 interview with Chris Heath
Chris Heath
Chris Heath is a British writer who was a regular contributor to the popular English music magazine Smash Hits in the eighties and early nineties....

, Chris Lowe noted how the duo's backing tracks were generated:

This arrangement has continued to their most recent tour, with the majority of the music provided by backing tracks sequenced
Music sequencer
The music sequencer is a device or computer software to record, edit, play back the music, by handling note and performance information in several forms, typically :...

 on a computer playing sounds from a rig of synthesisers. The duo employ programmer
Programming (music)
Programming is a form of music production and performance using electronic devices, often sequencers or computer programs, to generate music. Programming is used in nearly all forms of electronic music and in most hip hop music since the 1990s. It is also frequently used in modern pop and rock...

 Pete Gleadall to oversee the computers and play keyboards, as well as backing singers, who often include long time singer Sylvia Mason-James
Sylvia Mason-James
Sylvia Mason-James born in 1959 is a British singer who has worked extensively as a backing vocalist and solo artist.She started her career with the disco band Voyage in 1977....

. The boys have used Katie Kissoon in the past for vocal duties and have used other musicians: Danny Cummings
Danny Cummings
-Musical biography:The first Latin percussion instrument that Danny Cummings ever acquired was a second-hand conga he persuaded his parents to buy him for his 21st birthday. "I remember thinking that black fiberglass drum marked the beginning of a new era for me," says Cummings...

, Jodie Linscott and Dawne Adams (percussion); Scott Davidson
Scott Davidson (musician)
Scott Davidson played keyboards with Bros and Pet Shop Boys, before founding the Trade-It free advert paper and becoming a director and then chairman of Bristol City FC from 1996-2001...

, Peter Schwartz and Dominic Clarke (keyboards / programming); Mark Refoy and Bic Hayes (guitarists), as well as the late J.J. Belle (guitars and percussion).

Influence

As of 2003, Pet Shop Boys were ranked by Billboard's Joel Whitburn
Joel Whitburn
Joel Carver Whitburn is an American author and music historian.Whitburn founded Record Research Inc. in Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin, in 1970, and put together a team of researchers to examine in detail all of Billboards music and video charts...

 (in his book Billboard's Hot Dance/Disco 1974–2003) as the fourth most successful act on the U.S. Dance/Club Play charts, behind only Madonna
Madonna (entertainer)
Madonna is an American singer-songwriter, actress and entrepreneur. Born in Bay City, Michigan, she moved to New York City in 1977 to pursue a career in modern dance. After performing in the music groups Breakfast Club and Emmy, she released her debut album in 1983...

, Janet Jackson
Janet Jackson
Janet Damita Jo Jackson is an American recording artist and actress. Known for a series of sonically innovative, socially conscious and sexually provocative records, as well as elaborate stage shows, television and film roles, she has been a prominent figure in popular culture for over 25 years...

 and Donna Summer
Donna Summer
LaDonna Adrian Gaines , known by her stage name, Donna Summer, is an American singer/songwriter who gained prominence during the disco era of the 1970s. She has a mezzo-soprano vocal range. Summer is a five-time Grammy winner and was the first artist to have three consecutive double albums reach...

.

The history between Madonna and Pet Shop Boys goes back to 1988, with the song "Heart
Heart (Pet Shop Boys song)
"Heart" is a song recorded by Pet Shop Boys which reached #1 on the UK Singles Chart for three weeks in April 1988 . This is also their last number 1 song to date...

". In the liner notes to their 1991 greatest hits album, Discography, the band states that: "When we wrote this song ("Heart") we wanted to submit it to Madonna but didn't dare risk disappointment." Pet Shop Boys kept the song for themselves and it ended up going to number one in the UK. Later, in 1991, Madonna was referenced in a tongue-in-cheek lyric, in the song "DJ Culture
DJ Culture
"DJ Culture" is the first single released by British electronic music group Pet Shop Boys from their singles collection album Discography: The Complete Singles Collection. The single peaked at #13 on the UK Singles Chart in 1991...

", soon after she and Sean Penn
Sean Penn
Sean Justin Penn is an American actor, screenwriter and film director, also known for his political and social activism...

 had divorced. Tennant writes: "Like Liz before Betty / She after Sean / Suddenly you're missing / Then you're reborn". Madonna's album Confessions on a Dance Floor
Confessions on a Dance Floor
Confessions on a Dance Floor is the tenth studio album by American singer-songwriter Madonna. It was released on November 15, 2005 by Warner Bros. Records. The album was a complete departure from her last studio album, American Life . It included influences of 70s and 80s disco as well as...

, released November 2005, includes a track called "Jump
Jump (Madonna song)
"Jump" is a song by American singer-songwriter Madonna from her tenth studio album Confessions on a Dance Floor. Written by Madonna, Stuart Price and Joe Henry, the song was supposed to be released as the third single of the album...

", which has close similarities to "West End Girls". An interview at Popjustice
Popjustice
Popjustice is a music website founded in 2000 and is the work of UK freelance music journalist Peter Robinson, who has worked for NME, The Guardian, Attitude and many others....

 with Stuart Price
Stuart Price
Stuart Price is a three time Grammy-winning British electronic musician, songwriter, and record producer whose remixing and production skills are in demand by artists including New Order, Madonna, Kylie Minogue, Take That, Missy Elliott, Scissor Sisters, The Killers, Pet Shop Boys, Brandon...

, who produced Madonna's album, revealed the track "Jump
Jump (Madonna song)
"Jump" is a song by American singer-songwriter Madonna from her tenth studio album Confessions on a Dance Floor. Written by Madonna, Stuart Price and Joe Henry, the song was supposed to be released as the third single of the album...

" was a complete Chris Lowe
Chris Lowe
Chris Lowe is an English musician, who, with colleague Neil Tennant, makes up the pop duo Pet Shop Boys.-Childhood:...

 inspiration. Pet Shop Boys then remixed "Sorry
Sorry (Madonna song)
"Sorry" is a song by American singer-songwriter Madonna from her tenth studio album Confessions on a Dance Floor. It was written and produced by Madonna and Stuart Price and released as the second single from the album on February 28, 2006. It later appeared on Celebration, her 2009 greatest hits...

", the second single from the album. Madonna has used their version in her 2006 Confessions
Confessions Tour
Confessions Tour was the seventh concert tour by American singer-songwriter Madonna. It supported her tenth studio album, Confessions on a Dance Floor. Madonna confirmed the possibility of going out on a tour as early as November 2005. Jamie King, Madonna's longtime collaborator, was then hired on...

tour.

In October 2005, a Swedish tribute band
Tribute band
A tribute act is a music group, singer, or musician who specifically plays the music of a well-known music act - sometimes one which has disbanded, ceased touring or is deceased. Probably the largest class of tributes acts are Elvis impersonators, individual performers who mimic the songs and style...

 called West End Girls had a number three hit single
Hit single
A hit single is a recorded song or instrumental released as a single that has become very popular. Although it is sometimes used to describe any widely-played or big-selling song, the term "hit" is usually reserved for a single that has appeared in an official music chart through repeated radio...

 in their home country, with a cover version of "Domino Dancing
Domino Dancing
"Domino Dancing" is a song recorded by the British synthpop duo Pet Shop Boys which reached #7 on the UK Singles Chart. It was released as the lead single from their 1988 album, Introspective.-Song:...

". In January 2006, they released their own version of "West End Girls" and an album was also released in June. Pet Shop Boys also have several tribute bands including Birmingham
Birmingham
Birmingham is a city and metropolitan borough in the West Midlands of England. It is the most populous British city outside the capital London, with a population of 1,036,900 , and lies at the heart of the West Midlands conurbation, the second most populous urban area in the United Kingdom with a...

-based Pet Shop Noise and Seattle-based West End Boys.

A pastiche of "West End Girls", entitled "Inner City Pressure", features in Episode 2 of Season 1 of the comedy series Flight of the Conchords
Flight of the Conchords (TV series)
Flight of the Conchords is an American television comedy series that debuted on HBO on June 17, 2007. The show follows the adventures of Flight of the Conchords, a two-man band from New Zealand, as its members seek fame and success in New York City. The show stars the real-life duo, Jemaine Clement...

and the accompanying album.

Sexuality

Neil Tennant, who neither denied nor confirmed gay rumours throughout the 1980s, "came out
Coming out
Coming out is a figure of speech for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people's disclosure of their sexual orientation and/or gender identity....

", in a 1994 interview for Attitude
Attitude (magazine)
Attitude is a British gay lifestyle magazine owned by Vitality Publishing. It is sold worldwide as a physical magazine and a digital download for the iPad and iPhone via the App Store. The first issue appeared in May 1994....

, a UK gay lifestyle magazine. Lowe, meanwhile, has not disclosed his own orientation. He has said (in the 2-part 1996 BBC Radio 1
BBC Radio 1
BBC Radio 1 is a British national radio station operated by the British Broadcasting Corporation which also broadcasts internationally, specialising in current popular music and chart hits throughout the day. Radio 1 provides alternative genres after 7:00pm including electronic dance, hip hop, rock...

 documentary, About), rather, that there is only "(human) sexuality" – which suggests that he may consider the terms "gay" or "straight" to be constricting, inadequate, or inappropriate labels. The duo are sometimes incorrectly assumed to be a couple (in the 1990 biography Pet Shop Boys, Literally, Tennant recalls that even their ex-manager, Tom Watkins, was under this impression for a time).

Pet Shop Boys are seen as significant figures in gay culture for such songs as "Can You Forgive Her?
Can You Forgive Her? (song)
"Can You Forgive Her?" is a song by Pet Shop Boys, recorded for their 1993 album Very.Starting with a huge crash of synth and trumpet, it remains one of the more dramatic songs recorded by the duo—reminiscent of early hits like "It's a Sin". It was released as Verys lead single, almost four...

", "It's a Sin" (for which gay director Derek Jarman
Derek Jarman
Michael Derek Elworthy Jarman was an English film director, stage designer, diarist, artist, gardener and author.-Life:...

 produced the video
Music video
A music video or song video is a short film integrating a song and imagery, produced for promotional or artistic purposes. Modern music videos are primarily made and used as a marketing device intended to promote the sale of music recordings...

), "New York City Boy
New York City Boy
"New York City Boy" is the second single off the album Nightlife by British music group Pet Shop Boys. In the UK, the single peaked at #14 on the UK Singles Chart...

", and their cover
Cover version
In popular music, a cover version or cover song, or simply cover, is a new performance or recording of a contemporary or previously recorded, commercially released song or popular song...

 of Village People
Village People
Village People is a concept disco group that formed in the United States in 1977, well known for their on-stage costumes depicting American cultural stereotypes, as well as their catchy tunes and suggestive lyrics....

's "Go West
Go West (song)
"Go West" is a song by the 1970s disco group Village People. The song eventually found greater success when it was covered in 1993 by the synthpop duo Pet Shop Boys.-Village People version:...

". They have written a song about a young male fan spending a night with a rapper, based on Eminem
Eminem
Marshall Bruce Mathers III , better known by his stage name Eminem or his alter ego Slim Shady, is an American rapper, record producer, songwriter and actor. Eminem's popularity brought his group project, D12, to mainstream recognition...

, called "The Night I Fell in Love", and a song about coming out, "Metamorphosis". Album tracks "It Couldn't Happen Here
It Couldn't Happen Here
It Couldn't Happen Here is a 1988 musical film starring the British pop duo Pet Shop Boys and based around their music. It was originally conceived as an hour-long video based around their album Actually, but it turned into a surreal full-scale feature film directed by Jack Bond and co-starring...

", "Dreaming of the Queen", "The Survivors
The Survivors
- Film :* The Survivors , a Cuban drama film* The Survivors , an American comedy film* The Survivors , an American science-fiction film- Television :* Harold Robbins' The Survivors, a 1969 soap opera...

", and single "Being Boring
Being Boring
"Being Boring" is a single by the British pop group Pet Shop Boys.As the second single from the 1990 album Behaviour, after "So Hard" which was released before the album, "Being Boring" was not particularly successful upon release, only reaching number twenty in the UK Singles Chart and being the...

" deal with the gay experience and the devastation wrought by the AIDS crisis. However, Neil Tennant has stated many times that his lyrics are not specifically gay. Many of their songs are written from an ambiguous viewpoint and many of their fans are heterosexual.

Pet Shop Boys have performed and worked with many artists considered to be gay/bisexual icons
Gay icon
A gay icon is a public figure who is embraced by many within :lesbian, :gay, :bisexual and :transgender communities...

, such as Dusty Springfield
Dusty Springfield
Mary Isobel Catherine Bernadette O'BrienSources use both Isabel and Isobel as the spelling of her second name. OBE , known professionally as Dusty Springfield and dubbed The White Queen of Soul, was a British pop singer whose career extended from the late 1950s to the 1990s...

, David Bowie
David Bowie
David Bowie is an English musician, actor, record producer and arranger. A major figure for over four decades in the world of popular music, Bowie is widely regarded as an innovator, particularly for his work in the 1970s...

, Elton John
Elton John
Sir Elton Hercules John, CBE, Hon DMus is an English rock singer-songwriter, composer, pianist and occasional actor...

, Shirley Bassey
Shirley Bassey
Dame Shirley Bassey, DBE , is a Welsh singer. She found fame in the late 1950s and was "one of the most popular female vocalists in Britain during the last half of the 20th century"...

, Liza Minnelli
Liza Minnelli
Liza May Minnelli is an American actress and singer. She is the daughter of singer and actress Judy Garland and film director Vincente Minnelli....

, Boy George
Boy George
Boy George is a British singer-songwriter who was part of the English New Romantic movement which emerged in the early 1980s. He helped give androgyny an international stage with the success of Culture Club during the 1980s. His music is often classified as blue-eyed soul, which is influenced by...

, Kylie Minogue
Kylie Minogue
Kylie Ann Minogue, OBE - often known simply as Kylie - is an Australian singer, recording artist, songwriter, and actress. After beginning her career as a child actress on Australian television, she achieved recognition through her role in the television soap opera Neighbours, before commencing...

, Madonna
Madonna (entertainer)
Madonna is an American singer-songwriter, actress and entrepreneur. Born in Bay City, Michigan, she moved to New York City in 1977 to pursue a career in modern dance. After performing in the music groups Breakfast Club and Emmy, she released her debut album in 1983...

, Suede
Suede (band)
Suede are an English alternative rock band from London, formed in 1989. The group's most prominent early line-up featured singer Brett Anderson, guitarist Bernard Butler, bass player Mat Osman and drummer Simon Gilbert. By 1992, Suede were hailed as "The Best New Band in Britain", and attracted...

, Pete Burns
Pete Burns
Pete Burns is an English singer-songwriter, author and television personality who founded the band Dead or Alive in 1980, for which he acted as the vocalist and songwriter, and which rose to mainstream success with their 1985 single "You Spin Me Round "...

, Girls Aloud
Girls Aloud
Girls Aloud are a British and Irish pop girl group based in London. They were created through the ITV1 talent show Popstars The Rivals in 2002. The group consists of Cheryl Cole , Nadine Coyle, Sarah Harding, Nicola Roberts and Kimberley Walsh. They are signed to Fascination Records, a Polydor...

 and Lady Gaga
Lady GaGa
Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta , better known by her stage name Lady Gaga, is an American singer and songwriter. Born and raised in New York City, she primarily studied at the Convent of the Sacred Heart and briefly attended New York University's Tisch School of the Arts before withdrawing to...

. Pet Shop Boys attempted to organise and perform in a planned 2001 tour of out gay musicians, entitled Wotapalava. However, the plans were later put on hold and the idea seems to have been discarded.

Major awards

  • 1987: BPI ("Brit") Awards (U.K.) - Best Single (for West End Girls
    West End Girls
    "West End Girls" is a song by British pop duo Pet Shop Boys. Written by Neil Tennant and Chris Lowe, the song was released twice as a single. It is a synthpop song, influenced by hip hop music. The lyrics focus on class, and inner-city pressure, and were inspired by T.S. Eliot's poem The Waste Land...

    )
  • 1987: Ivor Novello Awards (U.K.) - Best International Hit (for West End Girls
    West End Girls
    "West End Girls" is a song by British pop duo Pet Shop Boys. Written by Neil Tennant and Chris Lowe, the song was released twice as a single. It is a synthpop song, influenced by hip hop music. The lyrics focus on class, and inner-city pressure, and were inspired by T.S. Eliot's poem The Waste Land...

    )
  • 1988: BPI ("Brit") Awards (U.K.) - Best Group
  • 1988: Ivor Novello Awards (U.K.) - Best International Hit (for It's a Sin
    It's a Sin
    "It's a Sin" is a song recorded by Pet Shop Boys which reached number one on the UK Singles Chart for three weeks in 1987.-Background and writing:...

    )
  • 1988: Houston Film Festival (U.S.) - Gold Jury Award (for It Couldn't Happen Here
    It Couldn't Happen Here
    It Couldn't Happen Here is a 1988 musical film starring the British pop duo Pet Shop Boys and based around their music. It was originally conceived as an hour-long video based around their album Actually, but it turned into a surreal full-scale feature film directed by Jack Bond and co-starring...

    )
  • 1988: Berolina Awards (Germany) - Group of the Year
  • 1991: Music Week (U.K.) - Best Video of the Year 1990 (for Being Boring
    Being Boring
    "Being Boring" is a single by the British pop group Pet Shop Boys.As the second single from the 1990 album Behaviour, after "So Hard" which was released before the album, "Being Boring" was not particularly successful upon release, only reaching number twenty in the UK Singles Chart and being the...

    )
  • 1994: Siggraph Wave Awards (U.S.) - Best Music Video (for Liberation
    Liberation (song)
    "Liberation" is the fourth single released by UK electronic music group Pet Shop Boys from their album Very. It peaked at #14 on the UK Singles Chart, making it the lowest-charting single in the UK from Very....

    )
  • 1994: Effects & Animation Festival (U.K.) - Best Music Video (for Liberation
    Liberation (song)
    "Liberation" is the fourth single released by UK electronic music group Pet Shop Boys from their album Very. It peaked at #14 on the UK Singles Chart, making it the lowest-charting single in the UK from Very....

    )
  • 1999: Viva Comet Awards (Germany) - Best International Video (for I Don't Know What You Want But I Can't Give It Any More
    I Don't Know What You Want But I Can't Give It Any More
    "I Don't Know What You Want But I Can't Give It Any More" is a song by British electronic music group Pet Shop Boys, featured on their 1999 album Nightlife...

    )
  • 2000: RSH Gold Awards (Germany) - Best International Band
  • 2000: Ivor Novello Awards (U.K.) - Outstanding Contribution to British Music
  • 2003: A-Ward (Germany) - Pioneers of Pop: Outstanding Contribution to Pop Music
  • 2003: World Awards (International) - The World Arts Award
  • 2004: Q Inspiration Award (U.K.) - Q Magazine
  • 2005: Song of the Decade 1985-1994 (U.K.) - West End Girls
    West End Girls
    "West End Girls" is a song by British pop duo Pet Shop Boys. Written by Neil Tennant and Chris Lowe, the song was released twice as a single. It is a synthpop song, influenced by hip hop music. The lyrics focus on class, and inner-city pressure, and were inspired by T.S. Eliot's poem The Waste Land...

    (winner of voting by six million BBC Radio 2 listeners in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the Ivor Novello Awards)
  • 2008: Cannes International Advertising Festival (France) - Gold Cyber Lion Award for "Other Interactive Digital Media Innovative Ideas" (for the "Integral" video)
  • 2009: BPI ("Brit") Awards (U.K.) - Outstanding Contribution to Music
  • 2011: Evening Standard Award (U.K.) - Beyond Theatre Award

Nominations

  • 1987: Best British Group
  • 1988: Best British Album for Actually
  • 1988: Best British Single for "Always on My Mind"
  • 1989: Best British Album for Introspective
  • 1989: Best British Group
  • 1992: Best British Group
  • 1994: Best British Video for "Go West"
  • 1994: Grammy Award – Best Recording Package for "Very Relentless"
  • 1997: Grammy Award – Best Dance Recording for "To Step Aside"
  • 2002: Grammy Award – Best Recording Package for "Release
    Release (Pet Shop Boys album)
    Release is the twelfth studio album, the eighth of entirely new music, by the English electronic music duo Pet Shop Boys. It was first released in 2002....

    "
  • 2006: Grammy Award – Best Electronic/Dance Recording for "I'm with Stupid"
  • 2006: Grammy Award – Best Electronic/Dance Album for "Fundamental
    Fundamental (album)
    Fundamental is the thirteenth album by Bonnie Raitt, released in 1998 .-Track listing:#"The Fundamental Things" – 3:45#"Cure for Love" – 4:11...

    "
  • 2007: Grammy Award – Best Electronic/Dance Recording for "Minimal
    Minimal (song)
    "Minimal" is a song by British synthpop band Pet Shop Boys and is featured on their 2006 album Fundamental. It was released 24 July 2006 as the second single from that album in the UK, entering the UK Singles Chart at #19 in the first week of its release . It was their 37th Top 20 hit in the UK...

    "
  • 2009: Grammy Award – Best Electronic/Dance Album for "Yes
    Yes (album)
    Yes is the 1969 eponymous debut album from British progressive rock band Yes, considered among the first progressive rock albums. The original Yes line-up of vocalist Jon Anderson, bassist Chris Squire, guitarist Peter Banks, keyboardist Tony Kaye, and drummer Bill Bruford remained intact for the...

    "
  • 2010: The BRITs Hits 30

Discography

  • Please (1986)
  • Actually
    Actually (album)
    In 2006, Q magazine placed the album at #22 in its list of "40 Best Albums of the '80s".-Track listing:# "One More Chance"  – 5:30...

    (1987)
  • Introspective (1988)
  • Behaviour (1990)
  • Very (1993)
  • Bilingual
    Bilingual (album)
    Bilingual is the tenth album by the English dance music group Pet Shop Boys. It has sold about 1,000,000 albums world-wide.-Overview:...

    (1996)
  • Nightlife (1999)
  • Release
    Release (Pet Shop Boys album)
    Release is the twelfth studio album, the eighth of entirely new music, by the English electronic music duo Pet Shop Boys. It was first released in 2002....

    (2002)
  • Fundamental
    Fundamental (Pet Shop Boys album)
    Fundamental is the sixteenth album, the ninth of entirely new music, by the British band Pet Shop Boys. It was released in May 2006 in the United Kingdom, Europe, Japan, and Canada, and was released in late June 2006 in the United States. The album entered the UK Albums Chart at number five on 28...

    (2006)
  • Yes
    Yes (Pet Shop Boys album)
    Yes is the tenth studio album by English electronic duo Pet Shop Boys. The album was recorded throughout 2008 and is produced by Brian Higgins and his production team Xenomania. Xenomania also co-wrote three of the tracks. Guitarist Johnny Marr and string arranger Owen Pallett appear as well...

    (2009)
  • TBA (2012)

External links

  • Pet Shop Boys – official website.
  • PSB discography – detailed discography site.
  • Pet Shop Boys discography at Discogs
    Discogs
    Discogs, short for discographies, is a website and database of information about audio recordings, including commercial releases, promotional releases, and bootleg or off-label releases. The Discogs servers, currently hosted under the domain name discogs.com, are owned by Zink Media, Inc., and are...

    .
  • Pandemonium CD Review – Pandemonium CD Review by SLUG
  • Official YouTube Channel Pet Shop Boys Official YouTube Channel
The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
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