Bet She's Not Your Girlfriend

Writers - Tennant/Lowe
First released - 1990
Original album - Alternative
Producer - Pet Shop Boys
Subsequent albums - Behaviour 2001 reissue Further Listening 1990-1991 bonus disc
Other releases - bonus track on the Japanese edition of Behaviour; b-side of single "Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes Off You)"

This fast-paced track was originally inspired, as the Boys have put it, by seeing a newspaper photo of George Michael with a woman (Chris: "We can say that now"). But then Neil turned it into a song about his close relationship as a teenager with an absolutely gorgeous young woman named Krysia, a longtime friend who eventually ended up running the early PSB Fan Club. But back in Neil's pre-fame days, friends and acquaintances couldn't figure out what Krysia saw in him, who was—as his own lyrics put it—"kind of shy and dry and verging on ugly." (Now you mustn't be so hard on yourself, Neil.) Although the two of them were just close friends who enjoyed going out together, they delighted in making others thinking there was more to it than that. Neil imagines others guessing the truth (as it were), prodding him with the title line. But, as far as Neil is concerned, it's none of their business: "I'd rather die than satisfy their curiosity."

With its clever lyrics and exciting house-style arrangement, it's amazing that this tour de force was for so long essentially relegated to the b-side of the "Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes Off You)" single. (At least some fans—this writer being among them—feel that it's strong enough to have been a single in its own right.) It was, in fact, originally slated for inclusion on Behaviour, but our musical heroes ultimately decided to leave it off that album. Fortunately, its subsequent reappearance on Alternative rescued it from obscurity.


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