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Music / Pretenders

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I'm special, so special, I gotta have some of your attention—give it to me!

Pretenders is the first studio album by The Pretenders. Released within the first breaths of 1980, the album often considered one of the foundation bricks of Alternative Rock and New Wave as we know it.

The album was recorded in 1979, with the first track recorded being their cover of The Kinks' "Stop Your Sobbing". However, the original producer, Nick Lowe, found them hard to work with and quit production early on, so they replaced him with Chris Thomas, who stayed throughout the rest of the production. The band recorded 18 tracks for the album, of which four were released as non-album singles, and two were released as B-sides to "Brass in Pocket."

Since its release, the album has received a ton of acclaim from music critics, appearing at #155 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time, and currently ranked at #159 on Acclaimed Music's compendium of various critics' greatest albums lists.



Side One

  1. "Precious" (3:36)
  2. "The Phone Call" (2:29)
  3. "Up the Neck" (4:47)
  4. "Tattooed Love Boys" (2:59)
  5. "Space Invader" (3:26)
  6. "The Wait" (3:35)
  7. "Stop Your Sobbing" (2:38)

Side Two

  1. "Kid" (3:06)
  2. "Private Life" (6:25)
  3. "Brass in Pocket" (3:04)
  4. "Lovers of Today" (5:51)
  5. "Mystery Achievement" (5:24)

"It is time for you to stop all of your troping...":

  • Cover Version: "Stop Your Sobbing", originally by The Kinks.
  • Epic Rocking: "Private Life" (6:25). "Lovers of Today" (5:51) falls just short.
  • Fading into the Next Song: "Space Invader" -> "The Wait".
  • Homesickness Hymn: "My City Was Gone" by the takes a look at "home" being lost to the passage of time as opposed to physical absence: while the narrator does go "back to Ohio" where she is from, she laments that what she remembers of her home turf is lost to progress.
  • Advertisement:
  • Instrumentals: "Space Invader".
  • Pep-Talk Song: "Kid":
    Kid, my only kid
    You look so small, you've gone so quiet
    I know you know what I'm about
    I won't deny it
  • Precision F-Strike: "Precious" has two examples:
    But you know I was shittin' bricks 'cause I'm precious
    But not me baby I'm too precious I had to fuck off
    • And also "Private Life":
    Attachment to obligation through guilt and regret
    Shit that's so wet
  • Uncommon Time:
    • "Tattooed Love Boys" switches between 7/8 and 4/4 every measure.
    • "The Phone Call" is at 7/4 in the verses.


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