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dot_clear.gif (43 bytes) 4 of 5 (by HM)
Return to Music Page Pet Shop Boys - Release (CD Album)

"Release" marks a significant departure from earlier Pet Shop Boys (PSB) releases in that it's almost an acoustic / rock album. Gone are the madly syncopated synth riffs that have made other PSB club floor hits, replaced by contemplative guitar solos and pensive compositions. Upon my first listen, I'll admit I was a little disappointed. Admittedly I am a huge PSB fans and
have been since high school back in the eighties. Although their sound has grown and matured over the years as one would expect, a certain familiarity has been retained. One of the greatest assets of this UK based pop duo have been their ability to write incredible compositions both musically and lyrically. After listening to "Release" a second and a third time, I'll admit, the album has grown on me.

NAJM Dance Culture
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dot_clear.gif (43 bytes) First thing you will notice is the lack of any clear lead singles (like New York City Boy) that could propel them to the top of the charts. That's not to say that there won't be any singles, as a matter of fact the first is "Home And Dry" with club ready remixes (including one by Peter Rauhofer). The second track on the album "I Get Along" is another clear candidate for the remix treatment with it's Beatleseque treatment. It will be interesting to hear the plethora of remixes that usually accompany a PSB album. Track #4 "London" has a very nice instrumentation, while track #9 "Here" is a classic boy meets boy love pop single that sounds like it could have come off of an earlier album. One of the catchiest tracks is #5 "Email" which chronicles an internet relationship.

In the end, there is a lot of great new material here, it's just presented a little differently. I give them a lot credit for doing things a new way. With an album name of "Release" you have to wonder if this is the kind of album that the boys have been longing to make? So what is the bottom line? If you're a hard cord PSB's fan, you should add this to your collection, if you're looking for hard core dance, you're not going to find it. There is a limited edition 2 CD set available with the second disk containing some additional songs and a remix or two so perhaps that's the route to go? Either way, I look forward to what these guys have up their sleeves next. "Release" is released through Sanctuary Records and is distributed through BMG- so it is available everywhere. Check it out.
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