Years & Years' Olly Alexander (left) and Pet Shop Boys' Neil Tennant (right) performing live on stage together

Pet Shop Boys have responded to the recent comparisons of their classic single ‘It’s A Sin’ to Olly Alexander’s Eurovision entry ‘Dizzy’.

Alexander released the track last month ahead of the Years & Years singer representing the UK at the Eurovision Song Contest in Malmö, Sweden next month.

‘Dizzy’ was co-written by Alexander and electronic producer Danny L Harle (Charli XCXDua LipaCaroline Polachek). Upon the track’s release, the former explained that it was “inspired by a lot of music we love from the ’80s like ErasureAdamski and of course Pet Shop Boys”.

Some listeners have pointed out similarities to Neil Tennant and Chris Lowe’s 1987 hit specifically. In a review, The Guardian wrote: “The chorus echoes that of ‘It’s A Sin’, right down to the church bells, the glittering verses sound like the past decade in banging Stuart Price-era PSB and the monotone spoken-word middle eight is pure Tennant.”

During a new interview with NME, Tennant revealed that he had been made aware of the comparisons – but dismissed there being any likeness between the two songs.

“When I read people saying it sounded similar, I immediately listened to it and I don’t think it does,” he said.

“But personally, I always think Pet Shop Boys sound like something else to what everyone else does. I think I hear what it’s meant to sound like.”

Alexander starred as Ritchie Tozer in the acclaimed Channel 4 series It’s A Sin in 2021. Created and written by Russell T Davies, the show explored the devastating impact of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the 1980s.

Elsewhere in Pet Shop Boys’ NME interview, Tennant said it felt like “the straight community finally faced up to the AIDS crisis” after watching the drama.

“Oh God, I found It’s A Sin painful to watch,” he recalled. “We put that into songs at the time, then you move on, but it’s like soldiers remembering the First World War. It wasn’t discussed for a long time, but it’s still lurking in your history, in the back, in your memories, the pain is still there.”

Pet Shop Boys revealed to NME that their 2019 single with Alexander, ‘Dreamland’, was originally written for, then ultimately rejected from, Years & Years’ 2018 album ‘Palo Santo’.

Tennant explained: “The other two [ex-Years & Years members Mikey Goldsworthy and Emre Turkmen] came in and one of them said it sounded like [The Weather Girls’] ‘It’s Raining Men’. Didn’t make me very happy, that remark!”

Years & Years released an acoustic cover of Pet Shop Boys’ ‘It’s A Sin’ when the TV series premiered, with a portion of the proceeds going to the HIV support charity George House Trust.

Alexander also teamed up with Elton John for a collaborative live rendition of the track at the BRIT Awards 2021. A studio version of the pair’s cover – co-produced by Pet Shop Boys and their collaborator Stuart Price – was shared to benefit the Elton John AIDS Foundation.

On New Year’s Eve 2021, Alexander joined forces with Tennant and Lowe to perform ‘It’s A Sin’ in London. The singer then appeared on stage with the synth-pop duo at Glastonbury 2022.

The original version of ‘It’s A Sin’ saw a huge streaming surge after the Channel 4 show of the same name aired.

Meanwhile, Pet Shop Boys are due to release their new album ‘Nonetheless’ this Friday (April 26). They’ll play an intimate show at London’s Koko on May 26, in addition to their 2024 ‘Dreamworld’ greatest hits tour dates.

The post Pet Shop Boys respond to comparisons of ‘It’s A Sin’ to Olly Alexander’s Eurovision entry ‘Dizzy’ appeared first on NME.


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