Pet Shop Boys Nightlife

Nightlife finds Neil and Chris in excellent form. This sixth release, is definitely one of their best efforts to date. On a sonic level, the album has much in common with Behaviour and Very and should manage to attract the commercial appeal of the latter. The production on the album is bright and inspiring, correcting the roughness that made Bilingual club-friendly, but disappointing overall. This time around, the lads work with Rollo, David Morales and Craig Armstrong who bring the PSB back into a world where they are most comfortable — pure pop. Let’s face it, they are getting a bit old to be mucking around with hipster New York house DJs for the “album proper.” Club kids should have no fear, though — a slew of remixes will more than make up for the overall softer tone of the album. This tone is best demonstrated on tracks like “The Only One” and “You Only Tell Me You Love Me When You’re Drunk.” Aside from the ballads, the album still manages to sound very fresh, with the opener “For Your Own Good” being a prime example of their awareness of trends on the dance floor. And, “New York City Boy” should prove to be an excellent follow-up to “Go West” for the picture perfect gay disco romp. Known for their unique duets (Dusty Springfield and Liza Minelli come to mind), we are given an interesting treat on “In Denial,” which finds Neil Tennant taking on more serious subject matter with the likes of Australian pop queen Kylie Minogue. Overall, this is a superb pop record and proves that you can be over 40 and still make cool records. (EMI)