Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes off You)

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"Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes off You)"
Single by Pet Shop Boys
A-side "How Can You Expect to Be Taken Seriously?"
B-side "Bet She's Not Your Girlfriend"
Released 11 March 1991
Format 7", 12", cassette, CD
Genre Synthpop
Length 4:31 (7" version)
Label Parlophone / EMI
Writer(s) Bono, The Edge, Larry Mullen, Adam Clayton; Bob Crewe, Bob Gaudio
Pet Shop Boys singles chronology
"Being Boring"
(1990)
"Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes Off You)"
(1991)
"Jealousy"
(1991)

"Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes off You)" is a song by English synthpop duo Pet Shop Boys. The song is a medley of covers of U2's "Where the Streets Have No Name" and "Can't Take My Eyes Off You", the 1960s single by Frankie Valli, though in an arrangement informed by the 1981 disco version of the song by Boystown Gang rather than the original.[1] The song accompanied "How Can You Expect to Be Taken Seriously?", the third single from their 1990 album, Behaviour, as a double A-side in the UK (both singles were released separately in the U.S.). Released in March 1991, this song was the band's fifteenth consecutive Top 20 hit in the UK, peaking at #4 on the UK Singles Chart. The band have said that they thought the guitars in the original sounded similar to a sequencer.[2]

Background and inspiration[edit]

In the liner notes for the album Discography: The Complete Singles Collection, the Pet Shop Boys stated that they wanted to turn "a mythic rock song into a stomping disco record."[1]

Content[edit]

The Pet Shop Boys version has been significantly changed in its musical arrangement from the original version. In contrast to the U2 version's instrumental build-up, the Pet Shop Boys version opens abruptly with synthesized and sampled noises and a drum machine. The musical climax of the song is also changed in other elements; a background vocal sample of "burning down love" is played right at the start, and synthesized horns erupt with even higher notes immediately following each chorus. Singer Neil Tennant performs the lyrics with no vocal exertion or stresses, in contrast to Bono's performance. In addition, at the transition between "Where the Streets Have No Name" and "Can't Take My Eyes off You", Tennant sings the two lines one after the other, with no change in pitch — pointing out the similarities in the two songs.[3] Following the release of the single, U2 issued a statement saying "What have we done to deserve this?". Tennant mentioned to The People in 2002 that he had "managed at long last to patch things up with Bono" after meeting him at one of Elton John's homes in the south of France.[4]

This version has been paired with "How Can You Expect to Be Taken Seriously?", a song criticizing the insincere humanitarian messages of a number of pop stars during the 1980s and the institutionalization of rock and roll.[3][5]

Track listing[edit]

7"
Parlophone / R 6285 (UK)
  1. "Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes off You)" (7" edit) – 4:31
  2. "How Can You Expect to Be Taken Seriously?" (single version) – 4:10
MC
EMI USA / 4KM-50351 (US)
  1. "Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes off You)" (original 7" mix) – 4:31
  2. "Bet She's Not Your Girlfriend" – 4:28
12"
Parlophone / 12 R 6285 (UK)
  1. "Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes off You)" (extended mix) – 6:44
  2. "How Can You Expect to Be Taken Seriously?" (extended mix) – 6:03
  3. "Bet She's Not Your Girlfriend" – 4:28
12"
Parlophone / 12 RX 6285 (UK)
  1. "Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes off You)" (David Morales Remix) – 6:24
  2. "How Can You Expect to Be Taken Seriously?" (Mo Mo Remix) – 6:51
  3. "How Can You Expect to Be Taken Seriously?" (Ragga Zone Remix) – 6:27
  • All tracks remixed by David Morales
  • Also released on CD in the Netherlands (560-20 4266 2)
12"
EMI USA / V-56217 (US)
  1. "Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes off You)" (12" Dance Mix) – 7:35
  2. "Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes off You)" (Sound Factory Mix) – 4:37
  3. "Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes off You)" (Red Zone Mix) – 6:18
  4. "Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes off You)" (Eclipse Mix) – 1:38
  5. "Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes off You)" (Ska reprise) – 2:59
  6. "Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes off You)" (7" version) – 4:33
  • Tracks 1-5 remixed by David Morales
CD
Parlophone / CD R 6285 (UK)
  1. "Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes off You)" – 5:35
  2. "How Can You Expect to Be Taken Seriously?" (extended mix) – 6:03
  3. "Bet She's Not Your Girlfriend" – 4:28
  4. "How Can You Expect to Be Taken Seriously?" (Classical reprise) – 3:05
CD
EMI USA / E2-56217 (US)
  1. "Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes off You)" (original 7" mix) – 4:31
  2. "Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes off You)" (12" Dance Mix) – 7:36
  3. "Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes off You)" (Red Zone Mix) – 6:20
  4. "Bet She's Not Your Girlfriend" – 4:28
  5. "I Want a Dog" (Techno Funk Mix) – 4:08
  • Tracks 2–3 remixed by David Morales

Charts[edit]

Chart positions (1991) Peak
position
Australia (ARIA)[6] 9
Austria (Ö3 Austria Top 40)[7] 5
Belgium (Ultratop 50 Flanders)[8] 8
Germany (Media Control Charts)[9] 7
Ireland (IRMA)[10] 2
Italy (FIMI)[11] 11
Netherlands (Dutch Top 40)[12] 13
New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)[13] 42
Spain (AFYVE)[14] 2
Sweden (Sverigetopplistan)[15] 13
Switzerland (Schweizer Hitparade)[16] 3
UK Singles (The Official Charts Company) 4
US Billboard Hot 100 72

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Where the Streets Have No Name". Retrieved 2010-03-28. 
  2. ^ Heath, Chris (2001). "Where the streets have no name (I can't take my eyes off you". In Behaviour / Further Listening 1990-1991 [CD liner notes]. London: Pet Shop Boys Partnership.
  3. ^ O'Hanlon, Eamonn (21 April 2002). "Bono and Neil's row ends with a splash". The People. Retrieved 3 November 2010. 
  4. ^ Chris Heath (2001). "How can you expect to be taken seriously?". In Behaviour / Further Listening 1990-1991 [CD liner notes]. London: Pet Shop Boys Partnership.
  5. ^ "Australian-charts.com – Pet Shop Boys – Where The Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes Off You)". ARIA Top 50 Singles.
  6. ^ "Austriancharts.at – Pet Shop Boys – Where The Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes Off You)" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40.
  7. ^ "Ultratop.be – Pet Shop Boys – Where The Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes Off You)" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50.
  8. ^ "Chartverfulgong > Pet Shop Boys > Where The Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes Off You) – musicline.de" (in German). Media Control Charts. PhonoNet GmbH.
  9. ^ "Irish Singles Chart – Search for song". Irish Recorded Music Association. Retrieved 6 July 2011. 
  10. ^ "Hit Parade Italia - Indice per Interprete: P". Hit Parade Italia. Retrieved 6 July 2012. 
  11. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – Pet Shop Boys search results" (in Dutch) Dutch Top 40.
  12. ^ "Charts.org.nz – Pet Shop Boys – Where The Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes Off You)". Top 40 Singles.
  13. ^ Salaverri, Fernando (September 2005). Sólo éxitos: año a año, 1959–2002 (1st ed.). Spain: Fundación Autor-SGAE. ISBN 84-8048-639-2. 
  14. ^ "Swedishcharts.com – Pet Shop Boys – Where The Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes Off You)". Singles Top 60.
  15. ^ "Swisscharts.com – Pet Shop Boys – Where The Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes Off You)". Swiss Singles Chart.

External links[edit]