Unity Tour Spoilers & Reviews

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oakey
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Re: Unity Tour Spoilers & Reviews

#136 Post by oakey »

Luke Colorado wrote: Tue 20 Sep 2022, 6:03 pm We have two bands with 40+ years of culturally defining moments with millions of die hard collectors and overlapping fans who buy *everything* they put forth, ...
Everybody is entitled to their own opinion of course, but just looking at the fact shows this cannot be true. If both bands had "millions of fans worldwide who buy everything" (and let's tone that down to the major album releases on either vinyl or CD), their latest albums would have sold millions of copies. However, they didn't.

Even though the number of records sold figures that you can find online should be taken with a pinch of salt, PSB apparently sold 50 million albums worldwide and New Order just over 3 million albums in the UK and US (their biggest markets). Let's say a PSB fan who owns "everything" owns all 25 albums (studio, live, remixalbums etc) in multiple formats (all albums on CD, further listening, most on vinyl, let's say 50 albums in total, not even everything) then at most there could have been 1 million hardcore fans in total worldwide during their long careers (there were simply not more records sold). But of course the general public bought a lot of those records too, and I am guessing that would make the majority of their sales. And some of their albums sold only a few 1000 copies (Disco 3 less than 3000 for instance). For New Order that will be way less even and both bands do not have the majority of fans in the US. So hardcore (and still active!) fans of either band (with an overlap as well) will maybe fill one arena or less on a US tour. That is why they have to appeal to the average Joe and play the hits/best-known songs.

I would say for acts like this, there are worldwide a few thousand hardcore fans who buy "everything" (as in most releases).
Last edited by oakey on Wed 21 Sep 2022, 10:29 am, edited 1 time in total.

NotInvisible
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Re: Unity Tour Spoilers & Reviews

#137 Post by NotInvisible »

vincenzosz wrote: Wed 21 Sep 2022, 6:03 amI get that your reasons for defending the tour the way it is, but it there is nothing wrong with being constructively critical of the art we consume. Even if we don't have a solution doesn't mean we don't have a right to be disappointed.
Constructive criticism would take the reality of the economics and logistics of touring into account. Otherwise it's just whining.
Sometimes just because the performance is a certain way doesn't mean its the only way it could of been.
Of course, which is why at no point have I said it couldn't be done differently per se. But it's a programmed performance with only 13 dates - half of which only have 30 minutes of setup time - to recoup costs. The reality is that that's going to have an enormous impact on what can be done, and a lot of what some fans want just isn't going to be possible due to expense. You're not going to get a bunch of dancers, for example. So our alternative suggestions are going to come up against limitations, and sadly most of our suggestions will fall down because of them.
My perception is that LukeColorado and others are making fair points and you are having a hard time conceding that anything other than the current set list is possible
I never said nothing other than the current set list is possible. However, many of these points are simply not achievable and therefore not "fair points" at all, but rather wishful thinking that does indeed deny the reality of the situation. Dancers have to be paid for. Live musicians have to be paid for. Sets have to be paid for. Projections have to be paid for. Programming for swap outs has to be paid for, since Pet Shop Boys don't play live like a rock band. Any suggestions incorporating dancers, musicians, alternate projections, alternate programming, different sets and costumes etc is going to run into these problems.

The six missing Dreamworld songs make sense as easy song swap options, but revisiting old staging - one suggestion put forward - isn't realistic on 13 dates. Playing Electronic songs during the changeover - when grips need to move gear around the stage to set up the next act - isn't realistic, it misses the entire point of being offline during the changeover in the first place.

Sometimes, things are complicated. Pet Shop Boys' portion of the Unity tour is a shortened Dreamworld presentation because that's how you make it affordable with 13 dates. They could probably have done a Release tour version instead and made it cost effective, but how much of the paying audience would want to see something like that? Hauling out the Cubism set (and attendant on-stage grips) isn't feasible. Traveling the Pandemonium dancers isn't feasible. The live musicians from the Super tour isn't feasible. Three of their old tours lost money on far more than 13 dates, so obviously none of that is feasible.

OakeyDokey
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Re: Unity Tour Spoilers & Reviews

#138 Post by OakeyDokey »

Stripped-down gigs in their dotage without any bells and whistles, semi-acoustic with storytelling between songs is the tour I wanna see.

What are "grips" by the way, stage-movers or stage props?

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Spittingcat
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Re: Unity Tour Spoilers & Reviews

#139 Post by Spittingcat »

OakeyDokey wrote: Wed 21 Sep 2022, 12:44 pm Stripped-down gigs in their dotage without any bells and whistles, semi-acoustic with storytelling between songs is the tour I wanna see.
Agreed. I think that will require smaller venues though, and perhaps a focus on new material written with that live approach in mind. They're currently going BIG, with all the big hits, played to big crowds, in big venues, with a big backdrop. And they're doing it right. IMHO.

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Patrick Bateman
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Re: Unity Tour Spoilers & Reviews

#140 Post by Patrick Bateman »

Is it really that surprising that they're playing a stripped-down Dreamworld set, while NO play their current set? It was only ever going to be thus; the only difference between Dreamworld and Unity is the name, which was obviously chosen to reflect the fact there are two acts, not one.

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Luke Colorado
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Re: Unity Tour Spoilers & Reviews

#141 Post by Luke Colorado »

When you buy a concert ticket there is often little to no description to what you will see. You have to gleam what you can from the very few clues you get. To me, the fact the band name are intentionally intertwined implies that the bands would perform together (at least at some point). Shame on me.
I sincerely *love* Disco 2 and listen to it straight through regularly.

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Patrick Bateman
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Re: Unity Tour Spoilers & Reviews

#142 Post by Patrick Bateman »

Luke Colorado wrote: Wed 21 Sep 2022, 2:33 pm When you buy a concert ticket there is often little to no description to what you will see. You have to gleam what you can from the very few clues you get. To me, the fact the band name are intentionally intertwined implies that the bands would perform together (at least at some point). Shame on me.
Pet Shop Boys of 1990 are a very different beast to Pet Shop Boys of 2022. Back then they'd probably have performed together, just like they did when Electronic supported Depeche Mode. These days it's all about the Benjamins.

Similarly, New Order seem to have mislaid their bassist.

Just be thankful you haven't had to choose between Neil Tennant's Pet Shop Boys and David Van Day's Pet Shop Boys. Yet.

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Luke Colorado
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Re: Unity Tour Spoilers & Reviews

#143 Post by Luke Colorado »

That’s been my point — well one of them — since the beginning. If the boys could see themselves today back in 1990 they’d be embarrassed. I believe I said that very thing somewhere in this thread. I’m not for it. I’m not supporting it.
I sincerely *love* Disco 2 and listen to it straight through regularly.

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Re: Unity Tour Spoilers & Reviews

#144 Post by oakey »

Patrick Bateman wrote: Wed 21 Sep 2022, 7:04 pm
Luke Colorado wrote: Wed 21 Sep 2022, 2:33 pm When you buy a concert ticket there is often little to no description to what you will see. You have to gleam what you can from the very few clues you get. To me, the fact the band name are intentionally intertwined implies that the bands would perform together (at least at some point). Shame on me.
Pet Shop Boys of 1990 are a very different beast to Pet Shop Boys of 2022. Back then they'd probably have performed together, just like they did when Electronic supported Depeche Mode. These days it's all about the Benjamins.

Similarly, New Order seem to have mislaid their bassist.

Just be thankful you haven't had to choose between Neil Tennant's Pet Shop Boys and David Van Day's Pet Shop Boys. Yet.
Or Pet Shop Boys featuring Neil Tennant versus Chris Lowe and the Darkness, the latter playing all the albums in chronological order 😀

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Re: Unity Tour Spoilers & Reviews

#145 Post by Nina »

Luke Colorado wrote: Wed 21 Sep 2022, 7:09 pm That’s been my point — well one of them — since the beginning. If the boys could see themselves today back in 1990 they’d be embarrassed. I believe I said that very thing somewhere in this thread. I’m not for it. I’m not supporting it.
This article is quite on the nose when it comes to pointing the contrast and how Discovery introduced a different live act

https://www.stevepafford.com/psbdiscovery/

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Luke Colorado
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Re: Unity Tour Spoilers & Reviews

#146 Post by Luke Colorado »

I have three main critiques which are continuously intertwined and conflated in this thread. Improvement, by the boys, on any one would be appreciated, but especially the first two.

1) Programming (song selection) - I don’t need to hear West End girls/It's a sin/Opportunities (Let's make lots of money)/Always on my mind/etc in concert ever again. I realize this is a big and extremely unrealistic ask, but I don’t. I also don’t need any more medleys.

2) If I must hear the above songs, for gods sake remix them in an interesting way a la the Nightlife tour. See: West End girls, BB, etc.

3) Give me more going on on stage than a projection and Neil’s awkward hand gestures. See: Performance, Nightlife, pandemonium.
I sincerely *love* Disco 2 and listen to it straight through regularly.

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Re: Unity Tour Spoilers & Reviews

#147 Post by Shopper »

Was listening to the Nightlife tour and the music selection was excellent! such a cool blend of the hits and album tracks. It's alright is so brilliant. Is there a studio version lurking somewhere ?!!
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Patrick Bateman
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Re: Unity Tour Spoilers & Reviews

#148 Post by Patrick Bateman »

Nina wrote: Wed 21 Sep 2022, 8:17 pmThis article is quite on the nose when it comes to pointing the contrast and how Discovery introduced a different live act

https://www.stevepafford.com/psbdiscovery/
Big Boy is correct of course, but as he observes, you can understand why they just wanted to have a South American party in 1994.

The current tour does feel valedictory; I can't imagine them doing it again in another ten years. It's a lap of honour, rather than anything new.

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Luke Colorado
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Re: Unity Tour Spoilers & Reviews

#149 Post by Luke Colorado »

It’s remarkable how few posts there have been from people who were at these shows (so far). Hopefully that will change when they hit NY and California.
I sincerely *love* Disco 2 and listen to it straight through regularly.

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Re: Unity Tour Spoilers & Reviews

#150 Post by DopeFiend »

NotInvisible wrote: Wed 21 Sep 2022, 8:09 am
vincenzosz wrote: Wed 21 Sep 2022, 6:03 amI get that your reasons for defending the tour the way it is, but it there is nothing wrong with being constructively critical of the art we consume. Even if we don't have a solution doesn't mean we don't have a right to be disappointed.
Constructive criticism would take the reality of the economics and logistics of touring into account. Otherwise it's just whining.
Sometimes just because the performance is a certain way doesn't mean its the only way it could of been.
Of course, which is why at no point have I said it couldn't be done differently per se. But it's a programmed performance with only 13 dates - half of which only have 30 minutes of setup time - to recoup costs. The reality is that that's going to have an enormous impact on what can be done, and a lot of what some fans want just isn't going to be possible due to expense. You're not going to get a bunch of dancers, for example. So our alternative suggestions are going to come up against limitations, and sadly most of our suggestions will fall down because of them.
My perception is that LukeColorado and others are making fair points and you are having a hard time conceding that anything other than the current set list is possible
I never said nothing other than the current set list is possible. However, many of these points are simply not achievable and therefore not "fair points" at all, but rather wishful thinking that does indeed deny the reality of the situation. Dancers have to be paid for. Live musicians have to be paid for. Sets have to be paid for. Projections have to be paid for. Programming for swap outs has to be paid for, since Pet Shop Boys don't play live like a rock band. Any suggestions incorporating dancers, musicians, alternate projections, alternate programming, different sets and costumes etc is going to run into these problems.

The six missing Dreamworld songs make sense as easy song swap options, but revisiting old staging - one suggestion put forward - isn't realistic on 13 dates. Playing Electronic songs during the changeover - when grips need to move gear around the stage to set up the next act - isn't realistic, it misses the entire point of being offline during the changeover in the first place.

Sometimes, things are complicated. Pet Shop Boys' portion of the Unity tour is a shortened Dreamworld presentation because that's how you make it affordable with 13 dates. They could probably have done a Release tour version instead and made it cost effective, but how much of the paying audience would want to see something like that? Hauling out the Cubism set (and attendant on-stage grips) isn't feasible. Traveling the Pandemonium dancers isn't feasible. The live musicians from the Super tour isn't feasible. Three of their old tours lost money on far more than 13 dates, so obviously none of that is feasible.
We're talking hypotheticals here and you're fixated on the number of dates
as if that's not also something that could be changed.
Luke Colorado wrote: Wed 21 Sep 2022, 2:33 pm When you buy a concert ticket there is often little to no description to what you will see. You have to gleam what you can from the very few clues you get. To me, the fact the band name are intentionally intertwined implies that the bands would perform together (at least at some point). Shame on me.
Agreed, I was going to say that. The poster has the band names intertwined which really implies some kind of mash up, not just the two acts in the same venue an hour apart.
A point I'd like to make, there weren't any interviews either. Typically there are promotional interviews explaining what the tour will be, whether it's on radio or video or written articles.
We had to deduce and assume what this Unity tour would be.
I think it's perfectly reasonable to expect some variation from the previous tour given not only the above facts but since it's titled differently, had it's own rehearsals and had a 2 month gap from Dreamworld.

It's not too late for them to change it up. Program a couple of Electronic tracks for the UK leg of the Unity tour scheduled next year.
I'd like PSB to impress us with something surprising, whether it's live or a studio release.
I think it's overdue, that's why we're having this reaction.

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