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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stunning
The extended plays on this album transform a clutch of excellent songs into something far richer. The patient instrumental craftwork builds so much more emotional power into "I'm not scared" and "Domino Dancing" in particular. I am listening to it as I write this and....well there is no point in trying to put into words the feeling it fills you with, over and over again...
Published on 9 Feb. 2011 by Milo di Thernan

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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars it's ok but NO 'DISCO'!
PSB - Introspective

most of you PSB fans and/or pop fans will be aware of the existence of 'Disco' from the Pet Shop Boys.

DISCO is one of THE disco/pop albums with a very limited number of songs but each song is a terrific 12" and blends wonderfully into the next one.

INTROSPECTIVE is NOT of the same level but it still, for the fans, nice...
Published on 8 Jan. 2013 by KD


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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stunning, 9 Feb. 2011
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This review is from: Introspective (Audio CD)
The extended plays on this album transform a clutch of excellent songs into something far richer. The patient instrumental craftwork builds so much more emotional power into "I'm not scared" and "Domino Dancing" in particular. I am listening to it as I write this and....well there is no point in trying to put into words the feeling it fills you with, over and over again. If you have found this, you have found an album which will inject you with calm energy and suffuse you with the rich contentment that results from a heart beating slightly faster than normal.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A thunder clap to last a lifetime, 7 Jun. 2009
By 
Lesley T "Lel" (Stockholm, Sweden) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Introspective (Audio CD)
Introspective hit my ears in November 1988 as I drove alone all the way from Frankfurt to Berkshire in my boss's very fast car. Belgium flew past at about 120mph. Yes, that was the 80's. He had left "Introspective" in the CD player and instantly I fell in love with the whole theatricality of it.

Driving in the bleak of Stonehenge a few months later "Left to my own Devices" threw a surprise. Skies were grey and brooding, all was quiet around and then.... the heavens launched a massive thunderclap synchronised with the music, at exactly 54.5 seconds into the track. I thought the Hand of God was going to descend and pluck me from the road. Eerie to say the least ...Imagine the desolateness and a khaki coloured light in the air and listen from the start.

The fugual "It's Alright " ranks in my personal top 10 tracks of all time. Addictive to this day. perhaps best enjoyed on your own driving or with some Sennheiser wireless headphones, volume no limit.

21 years later I still foist it on others when they come around...no Norah Jones sweet easy listening. Maybe I am still an 80s girl at heart...
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pet Shop Boys, Imperial, 23 Feb. 2013
By 
Autonome (London United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Introspective (Audio CD)
This is basically where I start wondering whether PSBs are from another planet or not. To quote Neil Tennant it seems that, with "Introspective" (released in October 1988), the Boys did find "the essence of pop". Where to start? instead of ten songs of 5 minutes each, "Introspective" is made of 6 extended mixes of songs/singles that had never been on an LP before. "I am not scared" was written for Patsy Kensit and Eigth Wonder in 1987. It was a very good song but here Neil's voice and the PSB's production of the song give it a real sense of danger. "Always on my mind", one of the best covers EVER, with its very sophisticated orchestration and production values, finds in "Introspective" its "ultimate" incarnation and mix: I was gobsmacked. "Left to my own devices" is a luscious Trevor Horn-produced affair, but also a marvelous melody, and the combination of both is a riot.
"It's alright" is a great cover of a Sterling Void song but the version here is not ideal and the Boys would perfect it for the single release in June 1989.
"I want a dog" is an extremely funny track (you always want one in every PSB album). Lastly, "Domino Dancing" is a beautiful dance track with a formidable "latino twist" thanks to producer Lewis Martineé. Overall, an essential LP, a place in time where all the stars are aligned...and the best was yet to come (the next PSB review by this author appears for Liza Minnelli's "Results" album).
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great, 23 April 2012
By 
This review is from: Introspective (Audio CD)
Few tunes are enough. Great versions. The cover is also fab! It is a must for Pet Shop Boys fans. I love this compact disc.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Can disco be introspective?, 15 Nov. 2003
By 
Kurt Messick "FrKurt Messick" (London, SW1) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Introspective (Audio CD)
The Pet Shop Boys have a habit of releasing 'minor' albums between their major releases. Between their first and second albums, Please and Actually, they released Disco, a six-track piece which featured no real new material, but rather remixes of previously released tracks (some primary, some B-side works).
Between Actually and Behaviour, the Pet Shop Boys released this album, Introspective, another minor album, with six tracks. However, this time there was new material--remixes of two previously released pieces, and four new works. This was done in an interesting format--each of the tracks on the album were in the form of 'extended dance versions', usually the kind of thing one gets when purchasing the single apart from the album. However, to get the tradition 'album' version of songs such as Domino dancing, Left to my own devices, or It's alright, one had to purchase the singles. This was an interesting marketing ploy, and extended the sales and life of this small album far beyond what it otherwise would have had.
Domino dancing was released first, and a classic Pet Shop Boys sound took over dance floors worldwide, combined with a Latin rhythm which was also in vogue during the fall of 1988. This had also perhaps the last MTV-hit video for the Pet Shop Boys; after this time, the videos released by the Pet Shop Boys no longer fit the game-show-and-rap-video dominated MTV schedule, although their videos continued to be played extensively on Euro-MTV.
Left to my own devices features more of the signature obscure-intellectual lyrics that Neil Tennant has been noted for:
I was faced by a choice at a difficult age,
would I write a book, or should I take to the stage,
but in the back of my head, I heard distant feet
Che Guevara and Debussy to a disco beat.
Simple music tracks backing introspective lyrics (perhaps this is how the album came by its title--Introspective).
I'm not scared was actually written for Patsy Kensit and Eighth Wonder (not so much of a wonder, in fact!), and was produced as a single for them by the Pet Shop Boys, before Eighth Wonder decided they did not care for the collaboration. (Take note--where are they today?) The Pet Shop Boys did their own version on this album which, while it was not released as a single, fared rather better than the Eighth Wonder version critically and in radio playtime.
It's alright was released immediately prior to their tour in the summer of 1989, actually long past the 'hot' time of the album, but served to show the enduring value of the Pet Shop Boys--that their albums can sit on the shelves for some time and lose none of their luster. Originally written by Chicago-House artist Sterling Void, this song was revitalised, had some new lyrics inserted, and became a hit for the Pet Shop Boys, their last for over a year, until Behaviour and its attendant singles began to be released late in 1990.
This is an album really for fans, but it is, like most of their albums, remarkably consistent in the look-and-feel of all songs, high quality and interesting to the ear.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Long live Vinyl!!., 29 Oct. 2014
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This review is from: introspective LP (Vinyl)
Great sound on VINYL, from the PSB and what a great surprise, this is not an LP but each track is on it's own 12 in and 45rpms. Great and very fast delivery...CHEERS Pete!.
Forget Compressed Disc, as for that MP3 rubbish don't even go there. To thumb through an LP and listen to how the PSB recorded this great music,that's what music is all about..Long Live Vinyl!!!.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Introspective CD, 21 April 2012
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This review is from: Introspective (Audio CD)
A nostalgic trip back to the late 80s and early 90s. The album is a true classic and will be played for years to come.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Quality not Quantity, 20 April 2013
By 
K. Tune "mustard57" - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: Introspective (Audio CD)
At the time Introspective was a difficult album to place. At six tracks, scarcely an album proper it seemed to be easier to slot it into the category of 'Remix' album - something the PSBs had explored with 'Disco' two years earlier. On listening again, over twenty years later it is fairer perhaps to regard it as an album proper, and more importantly give it the serious attention it warrants.

'Left To My Own Devices' is truly epic. It was the first collaboration the PSBs made with Trevor Horn, a marriage made in Heaven and is a magnificent mash up of drama and dance music. Neil's lyrics are some of the finest he ever wrote including the celebrated line 'Che Guevara and Debussy to a disco beat' which had puzzled readers writing to Smash Hits in search of more information on these unfamiliar characters. What you might term Neil's 'rapping' gives it a 'West End Girls' feel, and I do wonder if the Boys set out to write a WEG even better than the original ( something that perhaps they achieve, depending very much on your mood when you listen, such is the strength of the song ). Neil's dry wit on this song easily matches that of more celebrated wordsmith Morrissey and it remains a masterpiece of pastoral whimsy ( 'Che Guevara's drinking tea ' ) .

'I Want A Dog' - a reworking of the B-side of 'Rent' sees Neil's dry wit again take centre stage with some deep Chicago house style backing. 'Domino Dancing' is noteable in the PSB's canon as being one of their first lyrics to be readily interpretible as relating to the gay community ( specifically HIV / AIDS ) and a song which to a certain extent reduced their reach in the US ( for the same reason ).

'I'm not Scared' was originally written for Eighth Wonder / Patsy Kensit - but reclaimed in epic style by the PSBs. The street sounds make one think of Suburbia, with the lyrics 'if I was you / if I was you / I wouldn't treat me / The way you do' being genuinely moving.

Always on My Mind / In My House sees the high standard of the first four tracks falling just a little. Their re-working of the Elvis song ( originally for a TV tribute show ) is a classic, a worthy Xmas number one, and their best selling song of all in the UK. This remix, although interesting is perhaps not as enjoyable as their original - a shame in a way that it is the remix and not the original that finds its way onto this album.

The final track "It's Alright" ( credited to Sterling Void ) is something I find a little of a puzzle. Others have praised its 'fugal qualities' but I am mystified as to why the Boys chose to cover it- it just doesn't seem that interesting. At over nine minutes, it maintains interest, but fails to hit the high notes of earlier tracks.

Overall however, the first four, fairly stunning tracks make this well worth buying, and there is much to commend in the final two also. I think I'd buy it for just one of the first four.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply the best PSB record, 26 Sept. 2009
By 
Helcio H. Moraes "HELCIO HENRIQUES MORAES" (rio de janeiro, rio de janeiro Brazil) - See all my reviews
Introspective is the best PSB record by far.
Left to my own devices and Always on my mind are fantastic songs.
I listen to this record day after day and in every audience it is getting better and better.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars One of the best PSB albums, 30 April 2003
By 
M. Simmonds (England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Introspective (Audio CD)
It sounded great then, it sounds great now. An album containing only 6 tracks lasting about 45 minutes is definitely their best album of the 80's. The PSBs managed to squeeze Latin (Domino dancing), House (Always on my mind) and orchestral pop (Left to my own devices) into Introspective and it sounds particularly good remastered. The only slightly weak track is It's alright. As with the other enhanced versions of old PSB albums, the second CD contains a good selection of B-sides, most of which are available on 1995's Alternative if you already have the original albums.
I'm not going to write a detailed review for every PSB album, so here's my top five: Behaviour (most accomplished but least upbeat album. Beautiful songs but quite melancholy), Introspective, Very (Perfect pop. Most of the tracks could have been singles), Actually (PSBs at their peak commercially, a couple of weak tracks but two no.1s) and Release (mostly soft rock. Excellent songs throughout).
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