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Pet Shop Boys - Suburbia (1986)

  • Video Views 16,044,313
  • 80's Score80's Score 80's score: 2.12
  • Find this song on: Music Stack

"Suburbia" is a song by English synthpop duo Pet Shop Boys. It was remixed and released as the fourth single from the duo's ...

"Suburbia" is a song by English synthpop duo Pet Shop Boys. It was remixed and released as the fourth single from the duo's debut studio album, Please (1986), and became the band's second UK top-10 entry, peaking at number 8.

Background and music video

The song's primary inspiration is the 1984 Penelope Spheeris film Suburbia, and its depiction of violence and squalor in the suburbs of Los Angeles; in addition, the tension of the Brixton riots of 1981 and of 1985 hanging in recent memory led Neil Tennant of the duo to thinking about the boredom of suburbia and the underlying tension among disaffected youth that sparked off the riots at the least provocation.

The various versions of the song are punctuated by sounds of suburban violence, riots and smashing glass, as well as snarling dogs on the re-recorded single version (extended even further on the music video), which were derived from typical scenes in suburbia. The Please version of the song sounds very sparse in comparison. The version used for the video was the song that appeared on the PopArt compilation in 2003.

The video was directed by Eric Watson, and features footage of the duo in a Los Angeles suburb, as they happened to be there for that year's MTV Video Music Awards.

The B-sides to the single were "Jack the Lad" and "Paninaro". "The Full Horror mix" of Suburbia and the Italian Mix of Paninaro, which appeared on the Suburbia 12", both also appeared on the Pet Shop Boys' album Disco, and were later collected on the 2001 2-disc re-release of "Please".

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