Pet Shop Boys, Critically (1)

As a follow-up to our lengthy series of conversations (in 2010 and earlier this year) about Roxy Music and Bryan Ferry, Alfred Soto and I embark on a similar excursion into all things Pet Shop Boys. Over a series of who-knows-how-many discussions, we will delve into the music and the guiding aesthetic behind our mutually-agreed-upon favourite synth-pop duo of all time (better than Erasure, better … Continue reading Pet Shop Boys, Critically (1)

Zappa (14): “Dance Fever”!

I noted in my last post that the footage of Zappa on Deney Terrio’s “Dance Fever” had been removed from YouTube. Managed to find a version anyway — hideous quality, but pretty cool nonetheless. Frank appears on the panel (“I thought they were very sincere and I gave them a 96”) with “disco mama” Doris Roberts and one of the sons from “The Waltons.” American … Continue reading Zappa (14): “Dance Fever”!

Interview with Frank Owen

At Spin, writing the Singles column, you were sounding the horn about dance music. Did you go in there with that as a mission? At the time that was definitely it. Nobody treated dance music seriously at all. Melody Maker was wall-to-wall rock ‘n’ roll when I arrived. It was only by a lot of fighting with editors – a lot of fighting – and by the fact … Continue reading Interview with Frank Owen

Pet Shop Boys vs. Rock Critics (1986)

“When the subject of critics arose, Tennant just laughed. ‘I love to give them a hard time,’ he said in an interview here. ‘In America, I proudly go around and say to these critics that we’re a disco group. I know they hate disco. We kind of rub their faces in it. ‘I don’t like the way they turn up their noses at dance music. … Continue reading Pet Shop Boys vs. Rock Critics (1986)

From the Archives: Writing About Dancing (2001)

Writing About Dancing: Disco Critics Survey By Scott Woods (March 2001) “He tried pretending a dance is just a dance/But I see.” — “Let the Music Play,” Shannon (1983) Cineaste magazine recently ran a feature called “Film Criticism in America Today: A Critical Symposium,” in which they asked 24 well-regarded movie critics five questions primarily about the frustrations and rewards of writing movie criticism. It dawned … Continue reading From the Archives: Writing About Dancing (2001)