1 min

Popping culture: Pet Shop Boys and Shit Robot channel the gay heyday of disco

I remember the first time I saw the Pet Shop Boys. It was after school, and my sister and I were sitting down to watch Video Hits, CBC’s suppertime music video program. 

There was something about those opening notes on the synth and the construction of a record so completely digital. It was pop music for ears that wouldn’t normally dig a record constituted from keyboards. I was too young to understand the significance of the lyrics, but there was something there. Something that resonated in me.

Almost 30 years later, the Pet Shop Boys are still putting out records and are still master craftsmen in the creation of pop songs. Their latest single, “Axis,” sounds like a trip into the land of Moroder, circa “I Feel Love" while still bringing to mind the sounds of Patrick Cowley, a mastermind of Hi-NRG, one of the queerest forms of dance music. 

Meanwhile, the kids from Shit Robot have just put out a new single on DFA Records, featuring Sylvester-esque vocals provided by JENR (also known as Luke Jenner from The Rapture). Vocally, this track is a killer, and musically, the remixes — especially the Larse Remix — harken back to the blissful parties of the 1970s. Listen below.

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