MM: Pet Shop Boys – Yes

Pet Shop Boys

Pet Shop Boys - Yes

Ten albums in 23 years. It would seem that the boys from London care more about quality than quantity which, of course, is why their entire catalogue ranges from electropop genius down to merely engaging indulgence. Looking through their discography is a realization that these two masters of ironic pop are incredibly consistent even when inspired by the stage more than the pop scene. Their last album, Fundamental, was an over-the-top musical and, while it was excellent, it turned some fans off in its nod to Sondheim and Webber.

With Yes it is quite obvious the Boys missed the bubble-gum pop of the past. This is unabashedly, commercially-minded music, but with the style and grace of two masters of the pop genre. In other words, it is the catchiest thing they have cobbled together since 1993’s Very.

In order to pull this off, they went to the current hit making machine in the United Kingdom called Xenomania who helped coalesce PSB’s sound with the current feel of today’s hits. The outcome is an album that is all Pet Shops Boys, but with an added bounciness of today’s British hits like in “Love, Etc.” and “The Way It Used To Be.” Included also are some of the best ballads they done in a decade with “King Of Rome” and “Vulnerable.” Fans of PSB rejoice. Here is the album you’ve been waiting for since the sweetness of Very. And if you didn’t even know they were still making music, this is the perfect chance to rekindle that old relationship.

(Look for the B-side of “We’re All Criminals Now” which didn’t make the album, but is still great nonetheless. It’s on the “Love, Etc.” single.)

“Love, Etc.”

3 thoughts on “MM: Pet Shop Boys – Yes

  1. A very nice review! I saw ‘Fundamental’ as their finest hour, and still do. It’s dark, gothic, political but, if anything, needed a bit of fun. ‘Yes’ for me goes too far in the opposite direction sometimes, being too lightweight for my taste. I think it is, as you suggest, close to ‘Very’ but, unlike that album, I listened to ‘Yes’ almost non-stop for a month and then got to a point where I needed more from the music in order to keep listening and couldn’t find more. It’s not got the addictive quality of most previous PSB albums for me, but that’s not to say it isn’t good. It’s great. I just wish they’d release ‘Pandemonium’ which is one of the finest tracks, and was so disappointed to find out ‘Beautiful People’ is only being released as a single in Germany.

    I’ve found something of the more substantial side of PSB on their B-sides (can we still call them such really?). ‘We’re All Criminals Now’ is fantastic, nice to see it get a mention above but I absolutely love the Tom Stephan remix of ‘Up and Down’ which was given away on the PSB website absolutely free to anyone who wanted it. It’s now strangely one of the additional tracks alongside ‘Beautiful People’ in Germany.

    I read that ‘Beautiful People’ was originally envisioned as the theme for the wonderful BBC sitcom of the same name, which is a six-episode riot of laugher all about one very young boy growing up gay in a dead-end town, dreaming of London where the ‘beautiful people’ live.

    Try to get hold of the series if you can. They didn’t use the PSB track in the end but it’s amazing. Along with many other gay guys in the UK I could see so much of my early years in the lead character. It’s the funniest, sweetest comedy ever and I’m pleased it’s going to get a second series.

    I will return to ‘Yes’ eventually. I just overdosed on its sweetness for a time! :-)
    .-= Andy´s last blog ..Poem: Midnight Haunts =-.

  2. Scott

    I thought this was an old post that was showing up in my Bloglines again for some reason. Didn’t this album come out months and months ago?

    That being said, I love this album- Their best in many years!

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