A couple of years ago I wrote a little piece for The Guardian suggesting that Being Boring, the 1990 Pet Shop Boys classic, was the perfect pop song.
And while their work since that golden era has been mixed – though not without its masterpieces – it’s good to see some damn fine songs filling Electric, the new album released this week and generally considered their best in aeons.
Aided by Madonna producer Stuart Price, it harks back to that liminal late 80s/early 90s sound: full on dancefloor production, lyrics embracing hedonism, K-Klass-meets-Rollo style extended mixes (ask yer dad). No mean feat for two men in their mid to late fifties. And one track – Love is a Bourgeois Construct, complete with a Karl Marx reference or two – is already an all-time PSB classic.
To celebrate this new lifeblood we decided to take a look at how the borough of Camden has helped Pet Shop Boys’ career take shape. Did you know, for example, that in 1975 Neil Tennant graduated with a history degree from the North London Polytechnic (now the former Pizza Express building) on Prince Of Wales Road? And that more than twenty years later he performed Rent with Suede at the Roundhouse?
So without further ado, click through the following pages to find out where smash hits like It’s a Sin were first recorded, why Chris Lowe got lost in a cab on the way to Spring Studios, and which late night haunt the boys frequented way back in the early 80s.