1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
not the type of style I like,
This review is from: Electric (Audio CD)
I have heard the Pet Shop Boys criticised for their more melodic and much slower songs over the last decade and more. Many claim they should get back to more dance orientated tracks. I, personally, prefer them for their more melodic and soft output. I loved 'behaviour' and found 'very' extremely melodic also. I love their later efforts - songs like 'a silver age' and 'love is a catastrophe' are brimming with melody and great emotion.
The things I like least in the Pet shop boys catalogue are their 'disco' albums and 'relentless'. These are more discoish and lacking in melody, as far as I'm concerned.
This album is most closely related to those albums. It is more like an EP to my ears. It is also all upbeat with no ballads and softer moments. Never a good start for me.
I abhore 'Axis', menadering and boring. However, 'Bolshy' has a horrible chorus melody and soon grates. One of their worst songs ever. 'Love is a borgeois construct' is far better, reminding me a bit of the 'screaming' b side. It is a tuneful number, with 'shameless' backing vocals. I like it.
'Fluorescent' is good, and reminds me of visage - fade to grey. Very dark with strong, haunting synth sounds. 'Inside a dream' is another miss. Just boring. 'The last to die' is slightly more melodic, and has some lovely lala parts that are extremely melodic, very nice chord changes. This is better but it has been given a dance arrangement, when I could see it with a more soft, sympathetic arrangement. Yet it is still a decent cover.
As for 'shouting in the evening', starts out promisingly enough, sounding like a mid 1980's throwback. I like the softer bits of the track, but this is not enough to redeem it; a blatant b-side.
'Thursday' is one of the only tracks that I don't see as B-side material. It is more developed. Unusual, in that Chris Lowe is back doing is trademark spoke vocal in places. This has got a nice melody and is catchy. Unfortunately it has the most inane lyrics ever. 'Starting tonight, let's do it right'. Yuck. Still, one of the better tracks, the backing string synths are reminiscent of 'west end girls' in places.
Lastly is the track 'vocal', slightly ironic as there is not that much vocal work that stands out on this album. So I was expecting more from this track. Unfortunately, I don't like the lyrics again. 'everything about toight feels so right'....boring. The tune is dull and does nothing for me.
I am sure many will like this, but for me it is not a return to form, nor even a return to their roots. It's just like their disco albums, a stop gap, if you will, until the next album proper. Taken with a pinch of salt, it is ok.
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 30 Sep 2013 12:08:33 BDT
Mr. Mark R. Nolan says:
Absolutely couldn't disagree more if I tried. The songs referred to as PSB-canon highlights in this review are largely "meh" and this album is about as far from "meh" as you can get, apart from Love is a bourgeois construct" which is "meh" and an album low point, for me, as its PSB by numbers. Behaviour was good, but as a change from the norm. In the last few years the "meh" has become the norm and this album brilliantly stops that trend.
Posted on 1 Oct 2013 18:57:22 BDT
I mostly agree, pretty similar to how I feel about this release.
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