Many of our favourite artists no longer walk among us, from David Bowie and Prince to Leonard Cohen and so many more. But, as Dr. Rickey Vincent, reminded us on The History of Funk, we can’t wallow in despair. We gotta keep it moving, people, and appreciate what we have and the people we still have with us. Electronic music veterans Pet Shop Boys are definitely still with us. And they are just as fresh as ever, with a new collection of electronic symphonic beats, instrumentals, and songs.
Super is the thirteenth studio album by English synthpop duo Pet Shop Boys, released on 1 April 2016, on the band’s own label, x2, through Kobalt Label Services. It is available on vinyl and compact disc along with a digital download. The album debuted at number three on the UK Albums Chart. Lead single “The Pop Kids” reached number one on the UK Physical Singles Chart and narrowly missing out on the top 100 in the main chart.
The album’s release was announced on the band’s website and social media pages on 21 January 2016. It was made available for pre-order via the iTunes Store on the same day. Those who pre-ordered Super received an instant download of the album’s first track, “Inner Sanctum”. Additionally, the band announced a four-performance residency at the Royal Opera House, scheduled for July 2016. The album’s opening track. “Happiness”, was released as a second teaser track on 23 March 2016. The video for “Twenty-something” was released on 10 May 2016.
As well as this, a pop-up shop was opened in London between the 1st and 3rd of April 2016 to promote the release of the album.
“The Pop Kids” was released as the album’s lead single on 16 February 2016. A CD single and a digital extended play was released on 18 March 2016, and features two remixes of “The Pop Kids” and two new tracks, “In Bits” and “One-hit Wonder”. A white vinyl 12″ of “The Pop Kids” was released on May 27. It features five remixes of the song. On 24 June “Twenty-something” was released as the album’s second single on CD and download, featuring the single edit, two new tracks “The White Dress” and “Wiedersehen”, and two remixes.
On 22 July new versions of “Inner sanctum” were released on 12-inch vinyl and digitally to celebrate their sold out shows at the Royal Opera House in London. Both formats feature the Carl Craig C2 Juiced RMX. The vinyl release also featured two demo versions of the song. On 16 September “Say It to Me” was released digitally and on CD as the third and final single. Like “The Pop Kids” there were two separate digital bundles. The first includes an alternate mix of the song, as well as two new tracks, “A cloud in a box” and “The dead can dance”. The second bundle includes remixes by Tom Demac, Real Lies, and Offer Nissim. A 12″ vinyl format was released a week later. The song entered the US Billboard Dance Chart at number 31 on 21 October. On 10 December the song reached number four. No promotional video was created for “Say It to Me”; and it remains the only single not performed on their 2016 Super Tour.
Super received generally favorable reviews from music critics.
The album debuted at number three on the UK Albums Chart, selling 16,953 copies in its first week, becoming their 13th consecutive top 10 studio album. In the United States, Super debuted at number 58 on the Billboard 200 with first-week sales of 10,000 copies. It also debuted at number one on Billboard‘s Dance/Electronic Albums chart, becoming Pet Shop Boys’ first number-one album on the chart since Disco 3 (2003).
|2||“The Pop Kids“||3:55|
|5||“The Dictator Decides”||4:50|
|9||“Sad Robot World”||3:18|
|“Say It to Me“||3:08|
|“Into Thin Air”||4:17|
- Pet Shop Boys – performers and programming
- Stuart Price – production, mixing and additional programming
- Jessica Freedman – additional vocals on “Undertow”
- Nayana Holley – additional vocals on “Burn”
 Track #2, taken from Super (2016) by Pet Shop Boys. Video posted to YouTube by Pet Shop Boys on 16 FEB 2016.
 Track #3, taken from Super (2016) by Pet Shop Boys. Video posted to YouTube by Pet Shop Boys on 10 MAY 2016.
 Track #5, taken from Super (2016) by Pet Shop Boys.
 Track #7, taken from Super (2016) by Pet Shop Boys.
[Album cover image of Super by source fair use law.]
[18 DEC 2016]
[Last modified at 17:11 PST on 18 DEC 2016]