Special Lick My Love Pump Edition
I’m going to break from the random format to give a shout out to friend-of-the-blog Res Publica, el presidente de Republic of Dogs. Res had the Valentine’s Day nightmare of not only having a relationship end, but end because of infidelity.
I am a lucky man because I’ve never had to deal with that kind of breakup. My marriage to The Lovely Becky was arranged by our villages when we were very young, and I am fortunate that I found love in addition to a dowry of goats. But I’ve certainly had my share of the blues, and music provides me the muck to wallow in as well as the rope to pull myself out before I drown. Res already drowned his sorrows 31 times in one playlist, so I thought I’d post my favorite “fuck you” relationship songs out of my collection. Let's face it, most great rock music is about getting screwed over by someone, so it's perfectly suited for these kinds of situations.
1) “Barracuda,” Heart. When I’m feeling bad, I turn to comfort food in addition to music. Most comfort food has lots and lots of cheese—smothered on, backed in, or dipped into. I’ve taken the same approach here. Plus, no other guitar riff in rock history screams lying, cheating sack of shit like this one does.
2) “Take It on the Run,” REO Speedwagon. I really like cheese. And “Time for Me to Fly” is too wussy.
3) “Go Your Own Way,” Fleetwood Mac. The nacho dip is almost gone. Really, what’s more fuck you than writing a song like this about your ex- and having him/her sing backup vocals on it?
4) “Found Out About You,” Gin Blossoms. Usually after gorging on comfort food, I feel a bit guilty and also sad that there’s no more. I’m also still on the mad/sad fault line. This is the song for that moment.
5) “Stupid Thing,” Aimee Mann. Two musicians I would never want to piss off in a relationship: Nick Lowe and Aimee Mann. I would be sliced to death by their couplets. This song provides that moment of introspective anger, the you’re an asshole and I was so dumb for not seeing that moment.
6) “Stop Dragging My Heart Around,” Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. Stevie Nicks gets to appear twice because, well, she had to sing back up on her husband’s fuck you song. She’s got more pain than she does lacy dresses and Wiccan spells.
7) “Hopeless,” The Wrens. The it’s not me, it’s you time to turn the tables. A song that manages to sound hopeless and hopeful at the same time. The video really doesn't capture the awesomeness of this song.
8) “Denonair,” The Afghan Whigs. The house band at the House of Relationship Blues.
9) “Bigmouth Strikes Again,” The Smiths. It’s time to take a step back and have a good, black, bitter laugh. What better way to do that than lines like, Sweetness, I was only joking when I said by rights you should be bludgeoned in your bed?
10) “12XU,” Wire. Now is the time on Sprockets where we heal through anger. One of the all-time great fuck off songs. The video link is a little sloppier than the studio version.
11) “Stutter,” Elastica. Since “12XU” is so short, I think we need another dose of fast, in-your-face anger. Bonus points for making fun of the ex’s ability to raise the roof, so to speak. This isn’t boxing, and hitting below the belt is fair game.
12) “Kiss Off,” Violent Femmes. All healing involves 12 steps, so here’s a bonus track and the perfect end for today’s list. It's so immediate and in your face, like you’re hearing this soul-baring anger above the espresso machines of a coffee shop. And you have to love the mid-song top 10. Warning: mullet alert in the video.
I know a dozen songs won’t fix anything, but I hope Res can start to feel better.
Go ahead and add your own kiss off songs in the comments, and as the Belle & Sebastian album says, give us the dirt if you’re feeling sinister.