Behaviour (Pet Shop Boys album)

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Pet Shop Boys - Behaviour.png
Studio album by
Released22 October 1990 (1990-10-22)
RecordedMay – June 1990
Pet Shop Boys chronology
Discography: The Complete Singles Collection
Singles from Behaviour
  1. "So Hard"
    Released: 24 September 1990
  2. "Being Boring"
    Released: 12 November 1990
  3. "How Can You Expect to Be Taken Seriously?"
    Released: 11 March 1991
  4. "Jealousy"
    Released: 27 May 1991

Behaviour (released as Behavior in the United States) is the fourth studio album by English synth-pop duo Pet Shop Boys. It was released on 22 October 1990 by Parlophone. A Japanese special edition included a bonus Mini CD, exclusive artwork and printed lyrics in a white velvet-like box.


Harold Faltermeyer produced Behaviour at his Red Deer studio in Munich, Germany.[1] Because they were dissatisfied with the available digital synthesisers and samples, Pet Shop Boys wanted to use analogue synthesisers. Faltermeyer was a good choice for producer as he happened to be an expert on analogue equipment. The result was a Pet Shop Boys album different from both the previous album, Introspective, and the 1993 follow-up, Very. In places, the album expands upon the synth-pop genre with flavours of guitar pop ballads, as with "This Must Be the Place I Waited Years to Leave" and "My October Symphony" (a song about the decline of the Soviet Union) featuring guitarist Johnny Marr. Later, singer Neil Tennant would reflect on the different style of Behaviour: "It was more reflective and more musical-sounding, and also it probably didn't have irritatingly crass ideas in it, like our songs often do". Tennant stated the album was inspired by fellow synth-pop group Depeche Mode's album Violator,[2] released that same year.


  • "So Hard" (R 6269 – 24 September 1990)

The video was directed by Eric Watson. The b-side was "It Must Be Obvious", with the USA release also featuring the Italian Mix of "Paninaro", which was originally released on Disco. Remixes were by the Pet Shop Boys themselves, The KLF and David Morales. The KLF also remixed "It Must Be Obvious", which was only available on The KLF versus Pet Shop Boys CD and 12" of the single.

The video was directed by Bruce Weber. The b-side was "We All Feel Better in the Dark". There were Pet Shop Boys Extended Mixes of both a-side and b-side, and there was a remix of "Being Boring" by Marshall Jefferson and two remixes of the b-side by Brothers in Rhythm on a limited edition 12" and CD of the single.

The video was directed by Liam Kan. The single was radically remixed from the album version by Brothers in Rhythm, and this become the version on the double a-side released in the UK with "Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes off You)". This US release featured the Techno Funk mix of "I Want a Dog", the Marshall Jefferson remix of "Being Boring" and the Trevor Horn 7" mix of "It's Alright". There were also remixes by David Morales, which were released on a limited edition 12" and CD. The single mix was not featured on either of the Pet Shop Boys' greatest hits albums (Discography: The Complete Singles Collection and Pop Art: Pet Shop Boys – The Hits), although the video was featured on the Pop Art DVD and Videography.

The videos for both songs were directed by Liam Kan, which drew on iconography from the Pet Shop Boys' then current tour and featured Neil Tennant spoofing several 'rock' stars including U2, Bruce Springsteen, Elvis Presley and George Michael. There was an additional b-side, "Bet She's Not Your Girlfriend", and in addition to some extended mixes of both singles, there were additional remixes of both songs by David Morales.

The video was directed by Eric Watson. The b-side was the Pet Shop Boys' tidied-up demo version of "Losing My Mind", which they produced for Liza Minnelli in 1989 for her album Results. The single mix was more electronic than the version on the album, and there was an extended mix of "Jealousy" which featured Neil Tennant reading excerpts of Shakespeare's Othello, which is a play about jealousy. There was also a Disco Mix of "Losing My Mind". On the limited edition CD, an edit of the Extended Mix of "This Must Be the Place I Waited Years to Leave" (which was originally available with the Japanese version of Behaviour) was included along with David Morales' Red Zone mix of "So Hard". "Jealousy" was later covered by Dubstar. It is known to be one of Robbie Williams' favourite Pet Shop Boys songs, and he sang it with the duo for their 2006 Radio 2 concert, which was later released on the 2006 Pet Shop Boys' live album Concrete.

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic4.5/5 stars[3]
Chicago Tribune3.5/4 stars[4]
Entertainment WeeklyA+[5]
Los Angeles Times3/5 stars[6]
Q4/5 stars[9]
Record Mirror4/5 stars[10]
The Rolling Stone Album Guide4.5/5 stars[11]

In a contemporary review of Behaviour, Jim Farber of Entertainment Weekly wrote that the album contained the Pet Shop Boys' "best tunes yet" and "their most consistently beautiful melodies to date", noting "an easier way with the beats and greater vulnerability in the lyrics" compared to the group's prior work.[5] Greg Kot of the Chicago Tribune stated that Behaviour "may strike some listeners as even wimpier and blander than earlier releases, but its subtle brilliance emerges with repeated plays", calling it "a record that'll seduce dance clubs for a few months, and haunt the stay-at-home crowd for long after."[4] In a mixed review, Robert Hilburn of the Los Angeles Times felt that the album's highlights leave "the occasional lapses and the forays into slower tempos" feeling "flat by comparison".[6] NME's Roger Morton conceded that it was "probably no more a disconsolate record than Introspective or Actually", but questioned its relative lack of a "defiant surge of rhythm".[7]

Q included Behaviour in its list of the 50 best albums of 1990 and wrote: "Some of their dance fans may be a trifle disappointed ... but the best ballads here are as wry and touching as vintage Broadway. Frank Sinatra should be calling shortly."[13] Robert Christgau, in The Village Voice, cited "Being Boring" and "My October Symphony" as highlights,[14] later assigning the album a two-star honourable mention rating, indicating a "likable effort consumers attuned to its overriding aesthetic or individual vision may well enjoy."[15] Q later placed Behaviour in its list of the 90 best albums of the 1990s,[16] while critic Ned Raggett ranked the album at number nine in his 1999 list of "The Top 136 or So Albums of the Nineties".[17] Behaviour is featured in the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.[18]


Along with the others of the group's first six studio albums, in 2001 Behaviour was re-released as Behaviour/Further Listening: 1990–1991. The re-released version was digitally remastered, and accompanied with a second disc of B-sides, and some previously unreleased songs, recorded from 1990 to 1991. Notable songs on the second disc include "Miserablism", "DJ Culture", "Was It Worth It?", and the Ambient Mix of "Music for Boys". "Miserablism", a poignant satire of Morrissey,[19] was intended for inclusion on Behaviour up until the day it was sent for mastering. It later became the b-side for "Was It Worth It?" and was remixed by Moby for the 12-inch single; it was also featured on the limited edition version of the duo's 2003 compilation album PopArt: The Hits. "DJ Culture" and "Was It Worth It?" were the two singles recorded for the Pet Shop Boys' 1991 compilation album, Discography: The Complete Singles Collection. "Music for Boys" was originally credited as "Music for Boys Part 2" and was the B-side to "DJ Culture". The original B-side version can also be found on the 1995 compilation album Alternative. This reissue was re-released in 2018 along with the Further Listening editions of Very and Bilingual.

Another re-release followed on 9 February 2009, under the title of Behaviour: Remastered. This version contains only the 10 tracks on the original.

Track listing[edit]

All the songs were written by Neil Tennant and Chris Lowe, except "Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes off You)" (Bono, The Edge, Larry Mullen, Adam Clayton; Bob Crewe, Bob Gaudio)

Original album[edit]

  1. "Being Boring" – 6:49
  2. "This Must Be the Place I Waited Years to Leave" – 5:30
  3. "To Face the Truth" – 5:33
  4. "How Can You Expect to Be Taken Seriously?" – 3:56
  5. "Only the Wind" – 4:20
  6. "My October Symphony" – 5:18
  7. "So Hard" – 3:58
  8. "Nervously" – 4:06
  9. "The End of the World" – 4:43
  10. "Jealousy" – 4:48[20]

Japanese bonus disc[edit]

  1. "Miserablism" – 4:11
  2. "Bet She's Not Your Girlfriend" – 4:26
  3. "This Must Be the Place I Waited Years to Leave (Extended mix)" – 9:30[20]

Further Listening: 1990–1991[edit]

  1. "It Must Be Obvious" – 4:26
  2. "So Hard" (extended dance mix) – 6:38
  3. "Miserablism" – 4:07
  4. "Being Boring" (extended mix) – 10:40
  5. "Bet She's Not Your Girlfriend" – 4:30
  6. "We All Feel Better in the Dark" (extended mix) – 6:48
  7. "Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes off You)" (extended mix) – 6:46
  8. "Jealousy" (extended version) – 7:58
  9. "Generic Jingle" – 0:14 *
  10. "DJ Culture" (extended mix) – 6:53
  11. "Was It Worth It?" (twelve-inch mix) – 7:15
  12. "Music for Boys" (part 2) – 6:13 [incorrectly labelled as "Music for Boys" (Ambient mix)]
  13. "DJ Culture" (seven-inch mix) – 4:26[20]


  • (*) Previously unreleased.



Pet Shop Boys

Guest musicians


  • Artwork by [design] – Mark Farrow/3a, Pet Shop Boys
  • Engineer – Bob Kraushaar, Brian Reeves
  • Mixed by – Julian Mendelsohn
  • Photography – Eric Watson
  • Producer – Harold Faltermeyer, Pet Shop Boys
  • Programmed by [additional programming] – Dominic Clarke
  • Recorded by [orchestra and strings] – Haydn Bendall (tracks 2, 5, 6)
  • Recorded by [vocals] – Bob Kraushaar (tracks 1, 4, 6, 10)

Further Listening: 1990–1991[edit]

Guest musicians

  • Vocals [additional] – Juliet Roberts (track 6)
  • Vocals [additional] – Tessa Niles (tracks 7, 11, 13)
  • Vocals [additional] – Carol Kenyon, Guida De Palma (track 11)
  • Guitar – J.J. Belle (track 7)
  • Guitar – Greg Bone (tracks 10, 11, 13)
  • Percussion – Andy Duncan (track 11)
  • Keyboards [additional] – Gary Maughan (track 5)


  • Engineer – Pete Schwier (tracks 1, 5), Brian Reeves (tracks 2–4), Bob Kraushaar (tracks 5, 6), Paul Wright (tracks 6, 10, 11, 13), Ren Swan (track 7)
  • Mixed by – Pete Schwier (track 1), Julian Mendelsohn (tracks 2–5), Brothers in Rhythm (track 10), Pet Shop Boys (track 8)
  • Remixed by – Pet Shop Boys (tracks 6, 11), David Jacob (track 6), Stephen Hague (track 13)
  • Producer – Pet Shop Boys, Harold Faltermeyer (tracks 2–4, 8), Brothers in Rhythm (tracks 10, 11, 13)
  • Programmed by [additional programming] – Dominic Clarke (tracks 1, 2, 3)
  • Programmed by – Scott Davidson (tracks 10, 11, 13), Pete Gleadall (track 11)
  • Programmed By [sequencing] – Dominic Clarke (track 7)
  • Arranged by [orchestral arrangement] – Harold Faltermeyer (track 8)
  • Recorded by [orchestra] – Mike Jarrett (track 8)
  • Mastered by [remastered] – Tim Young[21]



Region Certification Certified units/sales
Brazil 120,000[39]
Canada (Music Canada)[40] Gold 50,000^
Finland (Musiikkituottajat)[41] Gold 41,480[41]
Germany (BVMI)[42] Gold 250,000^
Spain (PROMUSICAE)[43] Gold 50,000^
Sweden (GLF)[44] Gold 50,000^
Switzerland (IFPI Switzerland)[45] Gold 25,000^
United Kingdom (BPI)[46] Platinum 300,000^

^ Shipments figures based on certification alone.


  1. ^ Orchestra and strings


  1. ^ Zuberi, Nabeel (May 2001). Sounds English: transnational popular music. University of Illinois Press. p. 100. Retrieved 4 February 2012.
  2. ^ "10 years of Being boring". Retrieved on 18 January 2013.
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  4. ^ a b Kot, Greg (22 November 1990). "Pet Shop Boys: Behavior (EMI)". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 24 October 2015.
  5. ^ a b Farber, Jim (9 November 1990). "Behavior". Entertainment Weekly. No. 39. ISSN 1049-0434. Retrieved 28 September 2011.
  6. ^ a b Hilburn, Robert (4 November 1990). "Pet Shop Boys 'Behavior' EMI". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 9 November 2015.
  7. ^ a b Morton, Roger (27 October 1990). "The Pet Shop Boys: Behaviour". NME. ISSN 0028-6362. Archived from the original on 22 November 1999. Retrieved 28 September 2011.
  8. ^ Walters, Barry (29 January 2017). "Pet Shop Boys: Behaviour". Pitchfork. Retrieved 29 January 2017.
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  10. ^ "Pet Shop Boys: Behaviour". Record Mirror. 20 October 1990. ISSN 0144-5804.
  11. ^ Hull, Tom (2004). "Pet Shop Boys". In Brackett, Nathan; Hoard, Christian (eds.). The New Rolling Stone Album Guide (4th ed.). Simon & Schuster. pp. 630–31. ISBN 0-7432-0169-8.
  12. ^ Page, Betty (November 1990). "Pet Shop Boys: Behaviour". Vox. No. 2. ISSN 0960-300X.
  13. ^ "Albums of the Year: 1990". Q. No. 50. November 1990. ISSN 0955-4955. Retrieved 28 September 2011.
  14. ^ Christgau, Robert (7 May 1991). "Consumer Guide". The Village Voice. Retrieved 9 November 2015.
  15. ^ Christgau, Robert (2000). "Pet Shop Boys: Behavior". Christgau's Consumer Guide: Albums of the '90s. Macmillan Publishers. ISBN 0-312-24560-2. Retrieved 28 September 2011.
  16. ^ "90 Best Albums of the 1990s". Q. No. 159. December 1999. p. 68. ISSN 0955-4955. Retrieved 28 September 2011.
  17. ^ Raggett, Ned. "The Top 136 Or So Albums of the Nineties". Freaky Trigger. Archived from the original on 20 January 2000. Retrieved 28 September 2011.
  18. ^ Dimery, Robert, ed. (2010). 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die: Revised and Updated Edition. Universe. ISBN 0-7893-2074-6.
  19. ^ "Neil Tennant on his songs about Morrissey in Behavior reissue liner notes". 9 May 2001. Retrieved 20 February 2016.
  20. ^ a b c "Pet Shop Boys discography". Retrieved 1 October 2007.
  21. ^ "Pet Shop Boys – Behaviour / Further Listening 1990–1991". Retrieved 28 September 2011.
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  32. ^ Salaverrie, Fernando (September 2005). Sólo éxitos: año a año, 1959–2002 (in Spanish) (1st ed.). Madrid: Fundación Autor/SGAE. ISBN 84-8048-639-2.
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  39. ^ "Discografia marcada pela 'Dance music'". Jornal do Brasil (in Portuguese). 9 December 1994. Retrieved 7 April 2020.
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  43. ^ Salaverrie, Fernando (September 2005). Sólo éxitos: año a año, 1959–2002 (PDF) (in Spanish) (1st ed.). Madrid: Fundación Autor/SGAE. p. 929. ISBN 84-8048-639-2. Retrieved 16 June 2018.
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External links[edit]