Famously, Robyn Hitchcock only writes songs about four things: sex, death, food and insects. Take away insects (or don’t, suit yourself), and you get three most vital things in life. “I believe in sex and death”, says Woody Allen’s character at the end of Sleeper. Since compiling a list of songs about death seems like a very dull prospect, let’s deal with the second most powerful subconscious concept.
Note that these are not just songs about sex. If I had to do that, I’d post this lovely little tune. These songs are more than their lyrics. They are about the feeling, the sound or, in the case of The Go-Betweens, the rhythm.
#5. The Jesus and Mary Chain – “Some Candy Talking”
Currently I prefer the acoustic take from a John Peel session. For the vibe, for the intimate sound. Why these guys had so many songs about oral sex you will never know.
#4. The Go-Betweens – “Karen”
True story. I was once lying on the bed, listening to “Karen” and thinking how in God's name Robert Forster managed to rhyme ‘Joyce’ with ‘choice’ and still make it sound so intelligent. Girl enters the room: “You know what this song is about?” I raise my eyes. “Listen to the pacing”. Then I realise.
Days of innocence. “Karen” is not about sex. “Karen” is sex.
#3. Pulp – “This Is Hardcore”
Obvious choice, but what can you do. If you are looking for the right music, check out Peter Gabriel’s Passion – Music For The Last Temptation Of Christ. But “This Is Hardcore” will do nicely as well. The drama!
#2. Black Box Recorder – “The Art Of Driving”
Sarah Nixey might just have the most sensual voice in the history of pop music. Coupled with the lyrics and the overall feel of understated seduction – this classic song is not for the faint hearted.
#1. Kate Bush – “Top Of The City”
Seduces my soul. Kids won’t get it. But this is a hair-raising metaphor for orgasm. And, incidentally, one of the greatest songs of all time.