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RECORD RACK

Passive Pet Shop

April 27, 1986|SHARI OKAMOTO

"PLEASE." Pet Shop Boys. EMI-America. "West End Girls" is a refreshing, well-crafted mixture of funk and European techno-pop, but it's taken two years since the single's release for the Pet Shop Boys' first album to appear, and it's a real disappointment--tedious, passive and devoid of color. The LP focuses on Britain's unemployed, piling broad generalizations on melancholy foundations. Lead singer Neil Tennant makes matters worse with his nasal voice, which is limited in both range and emotion. His vocals are adequate on a few of the uptempo numbers, but on others, especially the ballads, they're an awkward embarrassment. Though songs like "Suburbia" and "West End Girls" provide some diversity, "Please" is simply too flat and lifeless to please.

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