Pet Shop Boys
About Pet Shop Boys
The duo of Neil Tennant and Chris Lowe have been crafting witty, hooky synth-pop since a chance meeting at a hi-fi shop in 1981. Tennant’s reserved vocals and Lowe’s crisp instrumentation added a sardonic existentialism to New Wave. Their first single, the 1984 chronicle of urban life “West End Girls,” became a minor club hit before being reworked with producer Stephen Hague; the revamped version became an international hit a year later. In the decades that followed, Pet Shop Boys would be revered as one of synth-pop’s most beloved acts, with songs like the storming yet irony-tinged “Opportunities (Let’s Make Lots of Money)” and the winking examination of money and love “Rent” crossing over from clubs to Top 40 radio. Pet Shop Boys had a publicly coy relationship with queerness; although Tennant, who came out in 1994, eschewed gender-specific language in his lyrics, the duo leaned into camp with gusto, producing and writing for Liza Minnelli’s 1989 pop return Results, giving the Village People’s “Go West” a muscular makeover, and scoring a global hit with the feisty Dusty Springfield collaboration “What Have I Done To Deserve This?” Their discography, stretching over four decades, is one of pop’s finest, pairing keen observations with irresistible hooks even as the world around the club changes shape.