Features

Saturday Deluxe / 15 July 2017

This Saturday: T. Rex, Pet Shop Boys and David Bowie…

One of the more hotly debated releases this week was Demon’s triple vinyl set of T. Rex remixes. These are remixes created by modern-day remixers. Plenty of you were of the opinion that Marc Bolan would be turning in his grave at such treatment, although I’m not so sure myself. Even Tony Visconti said Marc was always trying to make ‘one more for the kids’ so who’s to say he wouldn’t have given the thumbs up to this album if he was still with us, to show the ‘kids’ of today how cool he once was?

Any reservations about the audio didn’t stop the 500 limited edition 3LP red vinyl from selling out in less than 10 hours! Incidentally, you can now preview snippets of the audio via this iTunes link and even pre-order the set digitally for just £4.99, although no self-respecting SDE reader would do that :)

Read more about the T. Rex Remixes compilation


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The Pet Shop Boys reissues are out in a couple of weeks and I’ve been working behind-the-scenes trying to secure an interview with Neil Tennant and/or Chris Lowe for some time. Not only have I been a very big fan since the beginning, but as any regular SDE reader will be aware we’ve been following the trials and tribulations of the reissue ‘narrative’ since February 2015.

I’m sad to report for everyone who enjoys this blog that the band have ‘respectfully declined’ to discuss the reissues with SDE. No reason was given, but they did do an interview with the BBC entertainment website, which was published the other day.

I appreciate whatever I say here might smack of sour grapes, but in my opinion, there is still a bit of an old-school mentality in the music industry with regards to PR, where perhaps with limited time available, bands and their management just go for the easy win, the ‘big’ audiences. They go home satisfied and can boast of having ‘reached’ X amount of people. But, in reality, how many people who read the entertainment section of the BBC website regularly are gearing up to actually buy the Pet Shop Boys reissues? It’s likely to be a tiny, tiny fraction. Where the knowledgeable audience at SDE you’re are engaging with the passionate fans, the influencers, the ones who rave (or otherwise) about a product in the comment section here, and other online forums.

They’ve been working on these reissues for at least two and a half years, and when the time comes to promote them they inexplicably ignore the specialist blog that discusses reissues in-depth, day-in and day-out. Also, while SDE might be perceived as ‘niche’, to give you an idea, this blog enjoys more than twice the readers of Mojo magazine in any given month.

It’s disappointing, because these are the first PSB reissues in SDE’s history and Neil is clearly very articulate when discussing pop music – I was sure he’d be up for a chat. Let’s hope they aren’t holding a grudge over PopKidsGate, when I inadvertently announced bogus details about their April 2016 single!

I’d be interested in your views. Tell me to stop moaning or let me know if you think I have a point, in the comments section.


And finally for today, who is up for a Bowie poll?!

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102 responses to Saturday Deluxe / 15 July 2017

  1. Darren Briscoe says:

    I too am surprised by the Pet Shop Boys unwillingness to chat to you and if they are so up themselves then I have decided NOT to buy the new reissues…just illegally download them….save my money for artists who do care about their fans!

    • Paul Sinclair says:

      Appreciate the support, although obviously I wouldn’t condone illegal downloading!

      • michael Khalsa says:

        Hi Paul,

        The request may have been denied by a public relations person/management rather than the band themselves. Anyway you cant always get what you want. Or to quote a line from a favourite film ‘AH, but nobody ever said life was fair, Tina’.

    • probablyrustin says:

      A bit much to say that not granting SDE an interview means they don’t care about their fans… After all, they’re still putting out 3CD reissues of two of their worst sellers (Nightlife and Release) with unheard material, and that’s not exactly aimed at a mainstream audience.

    • Don Balfour says:

      wow.. that is a bit extreme..

  2. Best album out of those four? I went with Low in the end, although “Heroes” is definitely its equal. I love Lodger and Scary Monsters too. Basically, this box set covers my favourite era by my favourite artist.

  3. Jay king says:

    Very unlike Neil. Dont hold a grudge, its probably out of his hands

  4. Auntie Sabrina says:

    The BBC interview is very good, particularly Neil’s comments regarding the re-releases of Please, Actually and Behaviour:- “I would suggest you don’t buy them again because I think it’s a bit ridiculous really. It’s exactly the same tracks and the same packaging and the same booklet, it’s just that they’ve been mastered again.”.

    Congratulations on getting more readers than MOJO. A good moan never hurt anyone (add your own punchline here…)

    Scary Monsters is the best Bowie album for me. It came out when I was a mere strip of a thing (17)!

    Wishing everyone a great weekend….

  5. Robin Pullen says:

    I have a feeling that there is more to the PSBs refusal to do an interview than the ‘PopKidsGate’ incident (although it may play a small part); recently they have (Neil especially) been refusing to have photo’s taken at interviews/talks etc which seems strange for a band in the public eye (however diminished their fanbase is these days) and at first it appeared nothing more than contrariness but apparently, reading the forums etc its more of a management decision than their own (although obviously they will have had a big part to play in that). I’ve been a fan since day one, always will be, they are far above my most favourite group (I have over 900 separate releases of theirs) but even I’m finding if difficult to understand their unwillingness to do various promotional duties; age it seems has not made them any more amenable to participate in interviews and/or pose for press photos which is a huge shame as I would have loved to see an interview here by a passionate music fan who actually knows what they are talking about as opposed to someone who only has a passing knowledge of them and their music.

    • Don Balfour says:

      Robin..
      I would say you are right on the money about there PROMO interviews..
      I have been a fan since day one myself.. and I know the guys love there fans, but there are very private people. I had a wonderful run in with the Pet Shop Boys when they Toured Australia in the early 90’s in Sydney..
      I knocked a coffee over there table in a cafe in New Town …….. “”IT’S a long story…””
      But they both still signed my Record….

  6. Neal says:

    I would would have thought Heroes would have been peoples favourite – its mine anyway… I do like Neil Tennant but I think its a bit mean not to give you an interview. Those PSB albums aren’t particularly their best anyway so I would have thought they would need all the promo they could get! Only the fans will buy them.

  7. mike says:

    Tbh, i doubt an interview here would affect sales, as the hardcore psb fanbase will buy it regardless and any other sde followers, likely to be preaching to the converted. The Bbc interview got a lot of coverage on other sites and may re-awake a few of their old fanbase to upgrade vinyl or cd, which would be incremental sales. Loved his comment about not buying them again, their PR machine must have despaired!

  8. Tim-meh says:

    Scary Monsters hands down. Out of the 70s into the 80s. More influenced by new wave than Krautrock, and contains the greatest n0.1 single of all time. Still arty but more direct and less pretentious, and sadly the last truly great Bowie album.

  9. Daniel says:

    Seeing the PSB recent touring schedule, I’m sure it’s time/logistics that would make an interview tough. Would love to read it though. You’d ask about things that we want to know. The Bowie box contents look great…my fave period…except for the box title and outer cover art. Seems rushed and not well thought out.

  10. steve says:

    We have no idea what is going on in the PSBs personal lives at the moment. It would be a bit sad to throw a hissy fit over entitlement issues.

  11. Marcel says:

    You dissappointment is apparant and i guess rightfully so. However I wouldn’t take it personal and hold it against the PSB. Your day will surely come (expect if you bitch about them some more)
    In short: stop moaning ;-)

  12. Ben Williams says:

    Hopefully these bands will reconsider when doing promo for reissues – they only talk to music magazines in a world that gets most if it’s news from the internet.
    I’m sure once one or two of these ‘legacy’ bands and singers talk to SDE about their reissues, more will follow.
    Think of the sales they’re missing out when they don’t speak to a website that specialises on reissues!

    Keep trying I suppose and they might talk to SDE one day!

    You might of thought of it already but how about an interview with Tony Visconti about the new Lodger remix? That would be amazing.

    • Paul Sinclair says:

      I am going to be talking to Tony actually (probably in Sep) so thats good!

      • Rob says:

        Paul –

        Please ask Tony if we will ever see the unreleased Bowie 5.1 mixes released. He has confirmed in interviews that both Low & Lodger have already been mixed into 5.1. He has also said that some of Blackstar was, as soundtracks for the “Lazarus” and “Blackstar” videos. (There are rumors that several other titles including Scary Monsters have completed 5.1 mixes.)

        Thanks!

      • Ben Williams says:

        That’s very cool! Look forward to reading it.

      • bob says:

        Hi Paul
        If you can edge in a couple of Bolan questions to Tony ask him what he thinks of this horrible remix project and if he thinks that 40 years of cheapo compilations etc have damaged Bolan’s legacy.
        Gutted about you not getting the PSB interview. I always read their interviews as they are so good but a SDE interview would have been just fantastic.

  13. James Lee says:

    How can they use the word respectfully when they show you no respect by failing to give you a reason. Jay may well be right that it is out of their hands but even with tour commitments etc a telephone interview is possible. It’s their loss. Very surprised but delighted to hear you get more readers than Mojo- many congratulations. I would personally love you to interview OMD ahead of their new album. By the way apologies if it has been asked before but what is the music you use at the start and end of your videos? I hope I am not revealing hopeless ignorance by asking!

    • hamicle says:

      To “respectfully decline” is to decline politely. It doesn’t require that a reason is given.

      In a general sense, could it be that given these are catalogue releases from a previous label (albeit a longstanding one), they would just prefer to do a small amount of promo and have limited the time they make available?

      • Paul Sinclair says:

        I think the general point is, if you are going to go to all the effort of creating the reissues (and they have both been involved, especially Neil) then you should at least support them with appropriate media. I don’t think there is any question that SDE is ‘appropriate’!

  14. Alan says:

    Yes, I liked the Pet Shop Boys BBC interview. I did like it that he advised anyone that already owned the 2001 reissues not to get the new versions of those six albums. I can’t imagine many would anyway just for slightly different mastering.

  15. Aaron says:

    Do you have any contacts at cherry red? How about asking them what happened with the tony banks reissues we were promised last year? We only got 2 then nothing!

    • Straker says:

      Better questions to address to Cherry Red would be “Why is every other release of yours such a bloody cock-up? Do you exercise any quality control whatsoever?!”

  16. Dean says:

    As a Bowie fan of long standing, there is simply no way to choose from the titles in the poll. Each of them has a character of their own. The term “Berlin Trilogy” suggests these are part of a series – and while there are ways to argue the point, they are also fantastic albums within themselves. Not only that, but in reality no two of them are really alike. Low has a rock side which are like fragments of songs, none of them are fully developed. The second side has long instrumentals. Heroes has some straight forward rock on it, and the instrumentals on side two are book-ended by tracks with vocals. Lodger is a concept album with a completely different sound and style, and no instrumentals.

    Scary Monsters is a pop record.

    Choose between them? No. It was the height of Bowie’s creativity, imo. They’re all wonderful.

    • RJS says:

      I’d hardly call Scary Monsters a “Pop” album! Let’s Dance maybe, but not Scary Monsters.

      • Dean says:

        Well, it had two huge hits in the charts, with the songs all over MTV, Radio 1, and other shows. They were features on Top of the Pops, etc. It was a hugely popular album. While Let’s Dance took it to another level, Scary Monsters started the ball rolling on Bowie making it to the very top of public awareness. Scary Monsters was far more successful than any of the other three albums here.

  17. Lee Realgone says:

    I agree with your thoughts re: Pet Shop Boys interview, or lack there of. It’s hard to get the decent breaks when you’re a “smaller website”. Too many PR idiots just think in terms of potential numbers and not target audiences. We just have to keep trucking on and putting out our best work.

  18. Adam says:

    It’s the PSB’s loss of they don’t want to be interviewed by someone who respects their work, and thinks they’ll get more exposure from a BBC interview, when their fans who still collect are more likely to read an article here. The Pete Burns interview you did, was one of the, if not the, finest I’ve ever read with him, and he seemed happy and comfortable with it too.

  19. Jan says:

    Did you go via Murray Chalmers?

  20. RJS says:

    “Where the knowledgeable audience at SDE you’re are engaging with the passionate fans…”

    Who will still buy the product regardless of whether you interview them or not! Commiserations nonetheless for not securing an interview.

  21. Kauwgompie says:

    The decision to not do an interview w SDE is probably their publicist’s. But indeed very short-sighted. Every SDE reader will potentially buy PSB reissues. The cream of the crop in terms of reissue buyers is this particular blog. Worldwide. I can’t even imagine the annual collective amount of money that SDE readers spend on reissues. May be worth another poll Paul. That will show everyone out there the true power of SDE. It really should be the other way around, these publicists should be pursuing you Paul.

    I have a feeling that many artists, including PSB, are a bit weary of reissues. “All this attention that is going to passed glory and hardly anything when it comes to my newest album”. I guess some artists embrace them and some don’t. PSB don’t really. I remember Blank & Jones saying that they don’t want to release anything with “80’s” on it. I understand they don’t want to be a an over-the-top 80’s act (when they ruled the charts) but you also have to be realistic about it. Many of their 80’s fans, are still fans today. I doubt they picked up a massive amount of new fans with their last 4 or 5 albums. Their 80’s fans are still the ones who buy their stuff today. So to ignore or downplay the 80’s and 90’s glory days should only go so far. And if you properly release and promote a reissue, chances that people will buy your next new album will go up too.

    • Paul Sinclair says:

      Even if they don’t ‘like’ reissues, a quick scan through SDE would confirm I’ve supported and publicised virtually every contemporary release including their CD singles!

    • Stan Butler says:

      Every SDE reader a potential buyer? No offence and undoubtedly the Pet Shop Boys have produced some great music, but even accounting for the eclectic tastes of all that visit SDE, surely not everyone will be a fan. Having said that I used to enjoy listening to my sister’s copy of Disco. Great post by the way.

  22. Alan Jones says:

    The moment you sit back in complete smugness at the thought that you are one of the lucky 500 to secure the red vinyl T.Rex remixes album only to discover that in your haste to click the order button during your limited lunchtime period whilst trying to down a prawn salad at the same time you have inadvertently ordered the black vinyl version.

  23. Eamonn says:

    The interview you did with Bernard Butler a couple of years ago was top-notch and I’m sure he appreciated the thoughtful questions too.

  24. phil says:

    Dear Paul,

    PSB respectfully declined’ to discuss the reissues with you. I’m so sorry for you!
    You work is amazing. I’m very disappointed about the PSB reaction (i’m a very big fan since the beginnings)
    I’m sure you would make a GREAT interview.

    Maybe the reason is that they don’t want this reissues? or something like that?

    • Paul Sinclair says:

      Thanks Phil. I’m not really sorry for me, more for SDE readers, because the fun of doing interviews for me is to try and deliver some insights that you may not get elsewhere. Oh well.

  25. JackC says:

    Since we’re just playing guessing games here I’d suggest that after almost fifty years in the business Neil & Chris just don’t really give a rip. They must have piles of money and a million opportunities to make more so deciding on whether to give an interview or washing their hair they’d choose the later! Simple as that.

    • Paul Sinclair says:

      But I’ve always liked their attention to detail and understanding of the fan-artist relationship. I don’t think they’ve ever had a holier-than-thou attitude.

    • Daran says:

      Do they have much hair left? I was watching the great PSB ‘A Life In Pop’ documentary last weekend as I always treat myself on a Saturday night to put on a music concert DVD or documentary with along with a glass or three of cheap beer :), anyway Neil had little hair even going back 3 or 4 years, and as for Chris, well does anybody know the state of play with his head. It’s usually got a hat on it. Which is always suspicious (ala Edge).

      Anyway, no interview with SDE = their loss. I used to be a HUGE pets fan. Slowly over the years they have annoyed me enough to not care so much about their declining popularity. Doubtless they are wealthy, and rightly so. They were mega successful in the 80’s and early 90’s. Now just a curio i’m afraid, their product of little interest to me. Having said that, if they released their film ‘It Couldn’t Happen Here’ on DVD or BD I would be 1st in-line to buy it.

      • Paul H says:

        I have to say that, though I loved the first album and the Liza Minelli album (a reissue with two discs containing 3 songs is a bit much for me though), I have always found Neil Tennant to be a bit pompous. But, that could still be down to a Smash Hits single review for Gary Numan back in 1983 to be fair.

  26. JackC says:

    Opps meant to say Forty years in the business….

  27. Phil G. says:

    I’m a huge fan but declining an interview with SDE is definitely a missed opportunity for the PSB.

    The BBC interview is very good (and illuminating) but having a conversation with someone like yourself, Paul, would have been fascinating. You have the first-hand experience of curating a reissue and your questions would have reflected that.

    Anyway, I’m off to Twitter to politely make my thoughts known to @petshopboys. May I suggest that others do as well…?

  28. WILLIAM ENGLAND says:

    You’d have probably had more success interviewing Jon Savage about the reissues – he knows as much about PSB as Chris (and maybe only a little less than Neil).

  29. Normand says:

    LODGER, definitely the best one. When I bought it in 79, all songs stayed in my head for weeks. This album was far different and sounded new and fresh at the time, more then the previous two. And what a Side 2!!!

  30. Ralph says:

    Paul, I agree with your point of view regarding the PSB’s behaviour towards SDE a hundred percent. And even if the masses were still buying PSB records like they used to SDE would be the right place.

  31. Edward Bates says:

    Low is the best by far. Sound and Vision is my ringtone and Warszawa is my alarm. ‘Nuff said!

  32. Brad says:

    I think your blog is incredibly interesting, insightful, and informative. As far as I am concerned, if artists do not want to cooperate with you, it is their loss. I understand your frustration when as a journalist, you are thwarted in attempting to provide news for your readers, but, as they say, you can’t win em all. There still is plenty to keep us informed. Thank you.

  33. bonnin eric says:

    Well psp used to be psb.
    they lately changed litterally.. some french here will remind french concert is a catastrophy story as were related infos of the why..they let poeple think that Frenchies were out when it was about laser shows… amnesia i guess.. jean michel jarre…oh nit he duetted them so they knew..more to cancel a show because witjout lasers..and make an symphonic one nect week..and a laser one in montreux..
    sorry psb…u turned bad bad bad…what have PAul done to deserve this? Fans paid your rent for years now, some could at least been respected and also best site for actual promotion.
    Beware we could feel left by your own devices and stop to biy everything related to the new psb.
    PAul you did and still do a perfect job.
    groumpy frenchy .

  34. Gary Clutterbuck says:

    To be honest Paul, I’d disagree about the holier-than-thou attitude of the Pet Shop Boys. I’ve been a massive fan right from the start, but like Daran’s post above, I too have been annoyed by them or a little disappointed at times. It seems they are keen to promote themselves when they feel like it, but are very strict about what ‘work’ they do, and wish to keep their work very much limited to what they want and when they want it. I remember Neil stating how he was annoyed to be asked by a fan in a supermarket for an autograph, and how dare they ask him for one when he’s not ‘on’.
    My biggest disappointment of all was reading an interview when asked have you ever felt like giving up, and he recalled a performance in Grimsby on the Nightlife tour. I remember that well as I was there. The fans sang happy birthday to him, and he just turned his back on them as though he hadn’t even heard them.
    It’s annoying to think that they can’t spare a few minutes for even a short interview with you, as I’m sure you’d ask questions that other interviewers wouldn’t even think of. This site is ‘must read’ for me each day, irrespective of whether the Pet Shop Boys appear or not. Thanks for all your hard work in giving us news on the latest releases, superb interviews, and great bargain deals.

  35. Mark says:

    Yes, would have been great to have read an interview with them…but at least they had the decency to reply, even if it was to decline….

  36. Andrew Roberts says:

    It’s the readers who are most disappointed. Paul goes into the creative process of songs, how tracks are remastered, the reasoning behind which tracks are chosen. Quite simply, this blog reviews the reissue whereas traditional mags just review the album and perhaps a ‘why now’ question. I do hope whatever interviews they give to Q et al there is at least something of interest rather than just ‘i meet Neil as he orders a cappuccino at the cafe, sits back and sighs’ type interview.

  37. Gary Hunter says:

    “Scary Monsters” for me is Bowie’s best album ever, a brilliant album.

  38. Chris Lancaster says:

    Never mind the grumpy PSB; very cool to be talking to Tony Visconti in September. Hopefully he’ll let slip something about what might be coming up in Bowie-land – I’m hoping for more official live albums, such as Montreal ’83 or Perth ’78, and news of what might happen with 50th anniversary releases and any 2018 box set. Oh, and Low edged it for me in the poll.

  39. JohanE says:

    Just voted Lodger. Realised it would not be the winner but sad to see it clearly at the bottom. Such a wonderful album.

  40. Hello Bongo says:

    I think PR and Record Labels do recognise the smaller sites and blogs. I used to admin for a certain other music blog and was bombarded with offers of album previews, promos CD, gig passes etc – depending on the PR interviews could be arranged too.

    As others have said Neil and Chris probably aren’t aware they’ve ‘politely declined’ an interview with SDE, and perhaps given Neil’s background at the swingorilliant Smash Hits his loyalty might be with old pals in the journalism fraternity still trying to make a living ‘writing stuff’.

    Not sure if any SDE-rs are listeners to the excellent Sodajerker on Songwriting Podcast? – they’ve had a pretty mind boggling roll call of guests happy to talk to two easy going scousers about their craft – Paul Simon, Nick Heyward, Andy Partridge, Alica Keys, Lamont Dozier, Harry Shearer – anyway their recent 100th ‘Bonus episode’ explains how they make it all happen and their trials and tribulations securing guests for the show. The trick seems to be dogged determination – although they came within a whisker of getting McCartney – and Howard Jones is still holding out on ’em!
    https://www.sodajerker.com/

    So I’d say keep trying – and keep plugging away and adding to your growing list of guest SDE interviews – SDE ‘s reputation will surely stand you in good stead next time you request an audience with the PSBs or whoever.

  41. Eric says:

    Re: PSB – I found Neil’s comments in the BBC piece a bit contradictory. His awareness of pop music and intelligent, nuanced perception of how the whole thing works, both as a writer/performer and a fan himself, has long gone before him yet there he was making odd statements like “music should get louder as time passes”, and not seeming bothered about the whole “why is the Singles chart not actually a Singles chart anymore?”. You feel that once upon a time he would have had plenty to say about it, rather than defend the Ed Sheeran-led fiasco.

    Maybe he’s just past being that fussed anymore, PSB were arguably the forerunners of presenting their work in a very detailed way, with real care taken over the process, from the mixes and liner notes to the Further Listenings which were way ahead of their time. If he sees little point – creatively – in the original FLs coming out again, and probably sees the new ones which round up the story as nothing very interesting, perhaps the thought of going over it all with a microscope yet again simply does not appeal very much these days, however much fans (like me) would love to read it, and SDE would doubtless offer up some decent questions beyond the usual BBC/Q/Uncut level of interrogation.

    Ah well!

    • bob says:

      Eric, I wish I had taken the time to write your post, as they are my thoughts exactly….

    • Alan says:

      Most people have given up on the “singles” chart, though, it means so little now. I’m on the fence with the Ed Sheeran thing. Rigging the charts so that one act can only have three songs on it at a time seems wrong, but on the other hand the album chart can and does cover songs that aren’t actually singles. It was amusing that he was keen to point out he was no fan of Sheeran before defending him.

      I’m still trying to work out why, when PSBs left Parlophone, they didn’t “do a Kate Bush” and take the albums they held the rights to (everything from Behaviour onwards) with them. Or were they actually dropped by Parlophone/Warners but allowed to save face by saying they left? But if this was the case, it’s unlikely Warners would have been persuaded to release these reissues (particularly as the original albums from Nightlife onwards didn’t sell all that well). I suppose the difference between PSBs and Bush is that Bush still employs Warners’ services for distribution etc, while PSBs have Kobalt to do that.

  42. -sg- says:

    I have found PSB to always go for the sure thing with their press. For a time I was interviewing a lot of bands for radio and had a good relationship with their label yet I could get nowhere interview wise. I think a site like this would likely get passed around a lot and generate interest, but they have that big mindset from being multiplatinum, which just does not go for the smaller core audience. I just think after getting so big, most of those older stars just are not that hungry anymore, or have just said it all 100 times and are not that into the press parade, granted I think they would get a good interview out of you. I also find that generally management for the older acts go for the sure thing and shelter the acts from public access, avoiding anything that is not seen as BIG, even if the artists might be interested if they had a clue about the request. It is everyone’s loss really, as a good interview would be a good read, and may remind a few curious fans who have fallen off the PSB train.

  43. Daniel ( from Berlin ) says:

    i had 2 early books of mine dedicated to PSB in the 90’s and they sent a very friendly letter back
    and said that i took their lyrics perfectly into my nude art works. i cannot say anything bad about PSB. i thought the last years about to making a whole book with my works combined with lyric parts of PSB but everytime a better idea comes and i think “o.k. next year”.
    paul, if you will be the next time in berlin i can show you the works, but caution you could be shocked about the frontal nudity! ;)

  44. Ern says:

    Considering those that you have previously interviewed, both musicians and producers, your portfolio and readership, of whom a lot like or are fans of PSB, should hopefully be enough to get you an interview with them one day, maybe for the next studio album.

    From one fan to another, I hope that it does happen for you because we all know that it will be a great read.

    As always keep up the great work you do.

  45. Kris from Perth says:

    Went for Low, but so wanted to vote for Lodger, Bowies most underrated album of the 70’s.
    God…what a decision to make!!!

  46. Alan Clarke says:

    Wouldn’t it be easier (and better) to get an interview with PSB (Public Service Broadcasting)? I’m sure they’d be more interesting than the Pet Shop Boys… ;-)

  47. Geert De Wilde says:

    Could it be the fact that you produced this rather nice and professional looking publication of your excellent interviews with the Flowers In The Dirt Producers some time ago? I bought and loved it, but it might still be construed as bootlegging and making money off someone else’s product? Some sort of a backlash that way? Or do you think that’s totally out of the question?

    • Paul Sinclair says:

      It won’t be anything to do with that. Also, by your definition any magazine that costs money to buy or makes money from advertising is “making money off someone else’s product’! Also, let’s get it straight… “Bootlegging” is selling or distributing something illegally. Interviews I conduct are mine and I can do what I like with them :)

  48. Stevie B says:

    In regards to Pet Shop Boys. I’m surprised to hear that they have declined an interview… but not too surprised. I’ve been a fan since 1986 I’ve had many occasions to be able to meet them and get autographs most recently at an award ceremony at the Brixton Academy. Chris bolted straight for his car (I think I was the only person who recognised him under his hoodie), any fans waiting at the Stage Door afterwards were after bigger fish if I’m honest. Neil did stop for the 3 fans that were there for PSB, he signed my T-Shirt but when he saw my iPhone asked me not to take any ‘sneaky photos’ (I would never not ask before taking a photo (Theo from Hurts VERY graciously said Yes to a photo in the pub pre-event).
    Apparently they have I quote ‘They have decided they will not be having their photos taken with fans’ As he signed my T-Shirt he said ‘this is a very Pet Shop Boys thing to do’ (!?). It wasn’t even a PSB T-Shirt it was a Bowie one (Scary Monsters is my fave btw). I think they are caught up in new marketing strategies and hope to appeal to more ‘with it’ media savvy youngsters… Lot of good it’s done them so far… as apart from Vinyl Chart success, all their recent singles have bombed as regards Streaming, Downloads and your actual ‘chart’ charts.
    Interesting that he’s urging fans not to buy the Further Listenings that were previously released and are due for remastering and reissuing after these initial three ‘new’ bonus content albums. You would think if they had any investment in the products they would make more tracks available for these early albums (The Bobby O Demos, The Abbey Road Demos, The ‘Closer to Heaven’ Demos and all the remixes on vinyl that haven’t been on CD before).

    Maybe all is not well between Parlophone, Warners, Universal etc etc etc and PSB?

  49. Paddy says:

    Voted “Lodger” and have seen that I’m very much in the minority, really?.
    Two words.
    Red. Sails.
    Plus ‘Boys Keep Swinging’ was my first Bowie record bought after seeing him on the Kenny Everett show. Ashes to Ashes was also, for a 13 year old, a super amazing video when I saw it on Top of the pops, but Lodger gets my vote.

    • Dan says:

      Yeah, I voted for ‘Lodger’ too. I bought it (aged 16 or 17) for ‘Boys Keep Swinging’, but it was ‘Red Sails’ and ‘African Night Flight’ which truly blew me away.

      • Dan says:

        In fact ‘African Night Flight’ seemed to anticipate Byrne & Eno’s ‘My Life In The Bush of Ghosts’.

  50. Mic Smith says:

    I voted for Scary Monsters. As good as the other albums are they don’t have the pure consistency that SM has. Plus it has Teenage Wildlife on it – one of Bowie’s greatest songs.

    Heroes (the song) is a classic but I prefer Stage for the versions of Blackout and Beauty and the Beast. And the experimental side of Heroes hasn’t aged as well as Low’s equivalent stuff.

    Looking forward to the remix of Lodger. Look Back in Anger, Fantastic Voyage and Boys Keep Swining aside that album as always felt under produced somehow. Having said that though Bowie was always ahead of most of the competition during this time and any criticisms are really just nit-picks.

  51. Craig says:

    Proud but a bit dismayed voter of Lodger. I dunno, there is something completely cool about that album front to back. Ill hold my framed album cover proudly in hand.

  52. Dan says:

    Great news about the Tony Visconti interview, Paul. :) I’d be very interested to know whether we’ll ever get official releases of any Bowie demos (such as those for ‘Lodger’ and ‘Scary Monsters’). And after the box set issues are completed, are there plans for any box sets collecting unreleased live shows and/or studio rarities/outtakes? Aside from his rightly lauded work with Bowie and Bolan, it’s always worth remembering that TV produced the brilliant Sparks album, ‘Indiscreet’.

  53. James says:

    Scary Monsters for me.

    ‘Same old thing in brand new drag’ – could well be the motto for all SDE readers / collectors ;)

  54. 2wicky says:

    PSB:
    I think the PR teams of the record companies still have to realize who big the impact of internet blogs have become. If not for the mentioning and the link on this blog I’d never known of and read the PSB interview on the bbc.com website.
    Don’t let yourself get discouraged Paul, I guess that over time more and more people at the industry will realize the massive marketing potential of blogs like yours and maybe very shortly you’ll have those guys ringing yourself up and hoping not to be declined by the SDE-blog ;-)

    One thing struck me in that BBC interview:
    Neil Tennant said that he wants the reissues to be ‘louder’ which would be brickwalled. Usually most readers blame the brickwalling on the record companies but here we obviously have the artist voting for the ‘loud’ mastering and claiming that ‘louder is better’.

    Here’s the quote from the BBC interview which I’m referring to:

    Q: Your first six albums are also being remastered again – how much difference will there be?

    A: Well, it’s a controversial thing in some ways because I think records should just get louder. If you bought the collection in 2001, I would suggest you don’t buy them again because I think it’s a bit ridiculous really. It’s exactly the same tracks and the same packaging and the same booklet, it’s just that they’ve been mastered again.
    I asked our mastering engineer, ‘Do you think you can make them sound better than they did in 2001?’ And he said, “Yes we can, definitely.” And part of me is even slightly sceptical about that. You’re not getting any extra tracks or anything. Stick to your old ones, that’s my advice.

  55. daveid76 says:

    Just been singing your praises on the Pet Shop Boys forum in the ‘Reissues project’ thread. You have some fans there.

  56. bob says:

    Pet Shop Boys gave an interview to online only magazine The Quietus a few months ago as I remember reading it…

  57. Trash says:

    I’m surprised (and pleased) that Low is winning the Poll. I presumed that Heroes would win in terms of the Trilogy but that Scary Monsters might pip it to the post as it is clearly the most commercial of the lot.
    I’m pleased that Low seems to be getting recognised for the groundbreaking artistic statement that it was (and is).

    One thing though – it seems that the only way to see the results of the poll is to vote again so I hope I am not skewing the results with all the times I have been clicking on Low (in truth I have only viewed the results about 4 times….).

    Great idea Paul – I really do love this site!

    • Paul Sinclair says:

      Thanks. I didn’t think it let you vote more than once… I might have to check the settings. I’ve noticed that on a mobile device it doesn’t show you the current ‘standings’ but it DOES on a standard desktop or laptop. Again, will have a look into it…

  58. Dance to disco says:

    Might be worth contacting PSB management: info@beckerbrown.com

    • Paul Sinclair says:

      Thanks. To be honest I’m pretty sure Warners got in touch with the band directly. If not then at the very least their management. So what’s done is done.

  59. Paul Waddington says:

    It’s a shame they wouldn’t give you the interview, as their interviews are always great reads if they are done with people who ask the right questions. For example the interviews with Chris Heath for their fan club magazine. I’ve never really been a fan of Pete Burns, but I really enjoyed your interview with him. You’d never get anything like that in one of the remaining music magazines, although Classic Pop can sometimes come close. I would have enjoyed an SDE Neil Tennant interview.

    In fact, I’d quite like to see you branch out into career overview type interviews that aren’t aimed at specific new reissues (I’m good at spending other people’s time!). People like Holly Johnson, Stephen Duffy and Paddy McAloon would be great subjects for starters.

    • Chris Squires says:

      If Paul could do a career overview interview with Stephen Duffy I would a) be thrilled and b) go buy a lottery ticket.

      • Trash says:

        Add my vote to Paddy McAloon and Stephen Duffy – both excellent songwriters (not to knock Holly Johnson but my knowledge of his work begins and ends with the Frankie singles and a vocal he did on a Sakamoto album).

  60. Keith Brittain says:

    On Bowie, I’ll go with Scary Monsters, Lodger, Low, and Heroes. FYI, John Lennon cited Bowie’s (Scary Monster) videos as spuring him to do some. Sadly, he only had time to start “Woman.”

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