Bands like Pet Shop Boys, Yazoo and Erasure all possessed a horrendously sharp ear for brilliant pop songs, whilst maintaining a careful balance between mass-acceptance and an archly distant art-school aura.
Maybe they could make it now. Maybe they’re not cool/attractive/perky enough.
Maybe they’d write songs for Jessie J instead (which, frankly, would not be the end of the world). Maybe we need hybrid bands like An Blonds, who keep the ultra-pop aesthetic masked behind a cool facade to bridge the gap.
Breathed You Out is packed with the pop hooks, lovelorn lyrics and has the mildly bored delivery that Neil Tennant perfected in about 1986.
It is a super, lazy pop song, yet even the hippest of hipster would struggle to sneer at its supple, lithe charms.
And maybe that is where true pop exists now – not in the histrionics-by-numbers of the aforementioned Jessie J, but in the same place it has always been: in the hands of a small number of obsessive, unusual music makers, hoping to slip through the net of cool.