Pet Shop Boys ''Together''

The last couple of years have been great for the veteran synth-pop duo Pet Shop Boys – lead singer Neil Tennant and everything-else-guy Chris Lowe. In 2009, 25 years into their career, they released Yes, one of their best (and happiest sounding) albums ever, and they followed it up with a very retro retrospective tour, documented in the live album and DVD Pandemonium released earlier this year. Now they’re getting set to put out a new greatest hits collection.

The set’s called Ultimate and though the track-list leaves much to be desired, treading ground already well-documented in two previous compilations (1991’s essential Discography, and 2003’s massive PopArt), it does pick up one track each (definitely not enough) from their two most recent studio albums, and adds a new single, called “Together”. It’s a fine song, but hardly enough to justify buying another greatest hits CD. Chris and Neil largely cede the stage in the song’s video to two dueling gangs of dancers in a depressed looking workaday Russian (?) hamlet. It’s street toughs vs. a flock of ballerinas, who after an initial battle, teach each other their moves, hit the discos, and then put on a big show! Huzzah for Kinetic Young People! (The Pet Shop Boys make a couple of cameos, one at the beginning in costumes – Chris in his usual sunglasses, Neil with his usual big dog – and then again at the end looking on from the wings of the stage.)