Pet Shop Boys are an English electronic dance music duo, consisting of Neil Tennant, who provides main vocals, keyboards and occasional guitar, and Chris Lowe on keyboards.
The duo's debut single, “West End Girls,” was first released in 1984 but charted lowly. However, it was re-released in late-1985 and became their first #1 single to top the U.K. Singles chart and the Billboard Hot 100 Singles chart.
Parlophone Records released the duo's debut album, “Please,” in the United Kingdom in March 1986. The album peaked at #3 on the U.K. Albums chart and was certified platinum by the British Phonographic Industry (BPI). It also peaked at #7 on the Billboard 200 Albums chart in the United States and was certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).
The following summer they released “It's a Sin,” the lead single from their second album, “Actually.” The single became another U.K. #1 and also reached #9 in the U.S. This was followed by “What Have I Done to Deserve This?,” with Dusty Springfield, which peaked at #2 in both the U.K. and U.S.
In the summer of 1987 the Pet Shop Boys recorded “Always on My Mind,” a cover of the Elvis Presley track, and it became their third U.K #1 single over Christmas 1987. This was followed by another U.K #1, “Heart” in spring 1988. The album “Actually” was released in September 1987, peaked at #2 in the U.K. and was certified 3x platinum by the BPI.
The duo's third album, “Introspective,” was released in October 1988 and peaked at #2 in the U.K. and was certified 2x Platinum by the BPI.
“Behaviour” was released in 1990 and became their third album in a row to debut and peak at #2 in the U.K. The duo then released their first hits compilation, “Discography,” which included all of their single releases as well as two new tracks.
In 1993 they released a cover of the Village People single “Go West,” which reached #2 in the U.K. The duo's fifth album, “Very,” followed and is the only Pet Shop Boys album, so far, to reach #1 in the U.K.
In 1994 they recorded the Comic Relief charity single, “Absolutely Fabulous,” under the pseudonym “Absolutely Fabulous.” The duo does not consider it as a Pet Shop Boys single release and it was not included on any of their compilation albums. The duo then released a B-side collection album, “Alternative” in 1995. “Se a vida é (That's the Way Life Is),” was released in the summer of 1996, a Latin American music-inspired track, featuring a drum sample, which preceded the sixth Pet Shop Boys album, “Bilingual.”
“Nightlife,” the duo's seventh album came in 1999, followed by the modestly successful album “Release” in 2002. In November 2003, Pet Shop Boys released a second greatest hits album, “PopArt: Pet Shop Boys – The Hits.”
The ninth Pet Shop Boys studio album, “Fundamental,” was released in 2006, reaching #5 in the U.K.
Also in 2006, “Concrete” was released, a live album recorded at the Mermaid Theatre, in London. Released in U.K. in March 2009, “Yes,” was a critical success and hit #4, their highest album chart peak in more than a decade.
The Pet Shop Boys also received the BPI's award for Outstanding Contribution to British Music, at the 2009 Brit Awards ceremony. In December 2009, they released an EP of covers, remixes, and new material, entitled “Christmas.”