Sense of Time

Writers - Tennant/Lowe
First released - 2024
Original album - none
Producer - Pet Shop Boys
Subsequent albums - (none)
Other releases - bonus track with the single "Dancing Star"

This song has been announced as one of the bonus tracks with the "Dancing Star" single. The Boys apparently composed it back in 2018 during the sessions for Hotspot. Originally calling it "In the Moment," they've said that it "sounds like Tel Aviv beach music." I'm afraid I don't know what to make of that since I haven't the vaguest idea what "Tel Aviv beach music" sounds like.

The lyrics describe in multiple ways a feeling of profound disorientation of trying to make sense of things that really don't seem to make any sense at all. Though Neil (or his narrative persona) points to a recurring dream he's had as the at least initial source of feeling out of sorts in this way, you get the distinct impression that there's far more to it than just a dream. In fact, the song's bridge spells it out all too plainly:

In these imminent dark ages
If you find it too bizarre
And nothing seems to make sense any more
Just remember who you are

It would seem that Neil is of the opinion—and, if so, he's hardly alone in this belief, what with the likes of Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin on the world stage—that our world is on the cusp of a very "dark," confusing period. Yet amidst this darkness and chaos, remaining steadfast in your belief in yourself may offer a measure of certainty and stability. In other words, gain meaning from yourself.

Perhaps there's "no sense of time" because the world in which we live today seems to offer an inexplicable mix of the past, present, and future, a strange melding of the progressive, the static, and the regressive. One of the things I find most interesting is the repeated assertion "No sense of time. It all made perfect sense." Things have become so disorienting that disorientation itself has become sensible. In a world where confusion is the rule, then confusion seems perfectly logical.


There are others as well, but this should suffice to demonstrate the feasibility of this theory. As far as I know, however, the Boys haven't yet commented on any possible relationship between "Sense of Time" and 1984.

List cross-references