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Nightlife (Bonus Track Version)

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Album Review

Nightlife is a loose concept album — more of a song cycle, really — about nightlife (naturally), a collection of moods and themes, from love to loneliness. In that sense, it's not that different from most Pet Shop Boys albums, and, musically, the album is very much of a piece with Very and Bilingual, which is to say that it relies more on craft than on innovation. Depending on your point of view, this may not be such a bad thing, since Pet Shop Boys specialize in subtle craft and masterful understatement. Such skills serve them well when they're essentially following familiar musical territory, which they are on Nightlife. At its core, the record is very much like Very — a clever, skillful updating of classic disco, highlighted by small contemporary dance flourishes, and infused with a true sense of wit, sophistication, and intelligence. Pet Shop Boys do this music better than anyone else ever has, and they're at the top of their form here, but it's hard to shake the initial impression that they've done this before. Each individual song works beautifully, from the wistfully dejected "I Don't Know What You Want But I Can't Give It Any More" to the exhilarating Village People homage "New York City Boy," but as a whole, Nightlife seems less than the sum of its parts. Repeated listens reveal the songs' charms, yet Nightlife coasts on its craft a bit too much, which makes it feel like one of their second-tier albums.

Customer Reviews

The Soundtrack of Your (Night)life

Pet Shop Boys capture the beauty and loneliness of nightlife. The lyrics suggest personae who are longing (sometimes quietly, sometimes vigorously) to be seen, heard, acknowledged, wanted. The music keeps you dancing just out of reach of the others on that crowded dance floor. Shadows and flashing lights offer so much potential, keeping you on the "horizon of love." As those of us who've spent too much time clubbing already know, Nightlife is a lovely trap where you can enjoy getting lost in the possibilities.

All Petheads (Pet Shop Boys Fans) this is a must have!

This is an awesome addition to their already nearly perfect portfolio. The Pet Shop Boys have done it again two thumbs along with my two big toes are up for this thoroughly enjoyable album. They do not seem to stop! If you are a Pet Shop fan, this album is a must!

Last of the GREATS!

A classic from start to finish. I love the PSB, but the last few releases have been spotty. This was the last truly great album. I wish they would make music like this again. When they first started using acoustic guitars it was a nice change. Sort of updated their sound, but this all electronic, trance-y dance-y sound is what made them famous... they need to return to it. New York City Boy is arguably the best club song they ever recorded. Add "You Only Tell Me You Love Me When You're Drunk" and you have what the PSB's do best. I also love "Je t'aime...moi non plus". A song I first heard by Donna Summer on the "Thank God It's Friday" soundtrack.

Biography

Formed: August, 1981 in London, England

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Post-modern ironists cloaked behind a veil of buoyantly melodic and lushly romantic synth pop confections, Pet Shop Boys established themselves among the most commercially and critically successful groups of their era with cheeky, smart, and utterly danceable music. Always remaining one step ahead of their contemporaries, the British duo navigated the constantly shifting landscape of modern dance-pop with rare grace and intelligence, moving easily from disco to house to techno with their own distinctive...
Full Bio
Nightlife (Bonus Track Version), Pet Shop Boys
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