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Please

4.6 out of 5 stars 46 customer reviews

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Audio CD, October 25, 1990
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Editorial Reviews

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Pet Shop Boys ~ Please

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In many ways, Please brought Euro-techno into the unsuspecting homes of millions like no other album before. This time, the boys--in this case the Pet Shop Boys--were doin' it for themselves. "I Want a Lover" and "Tonight Is Forever" are songs by boys for boys about boys that snuck past so many because of the genderless (for the most part) objects of affection in the lyrics. Please announces with every synthesizer swell layered over electronic beats, that the boys came to dance and they could complain about their love lives while they were at it. There is also a snide swat or two at the socioeconomic state of things ("Opportunities"), but the Pet Shop Boys' debut will always be most remembered for Neil Tennant's Al Stewart-like vocals in "West End Girls." --Steve Gdula
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 25, 1990)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Parlophone
  • ASIN: B000002U9K
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (46 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #128,698 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Format: Audio CD
When one looks at the history of musical acts that can be categorized as "Dance Music" or "Disco", there are few acts that have achieved the success and longevity of the Pet Shop Boys. The Pet Shop Boys have been making music for over 20 years - releasing an album usually about every one or two years. In the UK, the Pet Shop Boys have consistently produced Top 10 albums. They haven't had quite the same amount of success on American shores, but nonetheless they have still maintained a solid following. It actually didn't start out like that for the Pet Shop Boys in the U.S. They actually burst on to the music scene in 1986 with a #1 song entitled "West End Girls". They would then follow "West End Girls" up with another hit - "Opportunities (Let's Make Lots of Money)". These two songs would be part of the debut - and most successful album by the Pet Shop Boys "Please".

Just because this album was the most successful album by the Pet Shop Boys doesn't mean that their career went downhill afterwards. In fact, I would subscribe to the theory that "Please" would lay their foundation for the next two decades following its 1986 release. It might be that many may judge the Pet Shop Boys' success in terms of the pop charts and not consider things from where their sweet spot is - the Dance charts. "West End Girls" and "Opportunities" were songs that not only got airplay on the Pop and Dance clubs, but were even songs that got some airplay on some Rock stations. Eventually the Pet Shop Boys would find their niche on the Dance charts - and would never look back. The Pet Shop Boys came along at the end of the Classic Disco album.
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Format: Audio CD
This is the first, and considered by many fans and non-fans, to be the quint-essential Pet Shop Boys album. Anyone familiar with the popular music of the 1980s will know the dominant track on the CD, West End Girls. Still considered their greatest hit, the Pet Shop Boys capitalised on the synthesizer and sample-heavy sound conjured up for this song by producing a slick London-based video that catapulted the PSB into the limelight around the world for the next several years.
The music of the Pet Shop Boys defies easy explanation. The lyrics are witty and urbane, very much a product of the disco and consumer-big-money culture of the 1980s. Songs like Opportunities/Let's Make Lots of Money became a sort of capitalist anthem, spawning two different video versions and countless remixes for the disco environments.
Taking a cue from the popular television of the time, the song Suburbia has a piano overlay that sounds similar to the then massively-popular Eastenders, and the lyrics recount a East End-esque storyline which sparks familiarity with those immersed in the pop culture.
The song Love Comes Quickly highlights both synthesizer effects and masking as well as simple and elegant poetic lyric. No base or screaming lines in this disco, no banal or forced words simply to serve as fronting for a drum-machine-produced rhythm, this song perhaps shows the Pet Shop Boys at their early height in development of words to music (that was finally fully developed in the album Behaviour).
Two other songs of note on this introductory album include the first track, Two Divided By Zero, which has a simple introduction and simplistic development that ends up gradually increasing in sound complexity while the sense of 'what does this song mean?
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Format: Audio CD
I think the reason I like this album so much is because the first time I ever had cable with MTV, I turned it on and saw the video for "West End Girls" playing, and the scene there has never left my head. Strange, I thought because there were no girls in the video! But there was something about the music that hooked me, and I read someone once called the music "haunting," and in many ways it is.
The music is very electronic and the lead singer Neil Tennant is probably not what you would think of as being a great singer. However, his voice works with the lyrics, and those lyrics really make you think. They stay with you.
My favorite songs on this album in addition to "West End Girls" would be "Love Comes Quickly" and "Suburbia". I also like the very simple "Later Tonight", which I learned to play on the piano (but I am not a good musician by any stretch). The Pet Shop Boys never really made it big in America past the mid-80s and it seems after their follow-up album ACTUALLY they practically disappeared from MTV and the radio waves. But fans like me still buy their albums.
But their musical story starts here, and it is a worthwhile album to have.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I already owned Please on CD, but when it was reissued as a remastered 2-disc set, I didn't hesitate to purchase it again. The remaster of the original disc (disc 1) sounds great and you can hear great details, such as the clicking heels at the beginning of West End Girls.
Disc 2 consists of remixes and b-sides from that era (1984-1986). Highlights include the two songs released on the Disco EP - In the Night and Paninaro, as well as the dance remix of West End Girls. The full version of Opportunities is also included here, which includes the infamous spoken word ending (All the love we had/ and the love that we hide/ Who will bury us/ when we die). Yes, it's pretentious, but typical Pet Shop Boys!
Best of all is the 36 page booklet. It includes numerous pictures from that era, all song lyrics, and comments from the PSB themselves about the CD as a whole as well as each song. You get all kinds of fascinating tidbits, such as Chris' suggestion that Opportunties (Reprise) is the best track on Please! This collection is a bit pricey if you already own the original Please, but it is an essential for any PSB fan.
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