Saturday, March 14, 2009


And speaking of album covers, why is it that rock music happily admits the association between food and sex, but then finds it necessary to make a joke out of it? If it's a vaguely offensive joke then so much the better, apparently.

If there's a less sexy "sexy" album cover than the one above from Juicy Lucy, I'm pretty glad not to have seen it. I guess the days when we fretted about sexism in rock are long gone, but you don't exactly need to be a member of a lesbian separatist commune to believe this cover says something pretty nasty about the male psyche.

And what about this one from the Undertones?

This one was always baffling. I have no idea what the lads in the band did in their personal lives, but the music always seemed sort of youthful and innocent and clean living; nothing like the vibe depicted on this cover. I'd believe that Joey Ramone wrapped naked girls in bacon, but not Feragal Sharkey, surely.

The Undertones were of course very young at the time, and no doubt had a lot of things still to work out. Making a joke was easier than dealing with the real thing. And maybe what we're actually talking about here is a denial of sensuality. Good food, like good sex, is actually quite a complicated pleasure. They both involve intensity and instinct but that doesn't mean there's anything exactly simple about them.

And of course this applies to the best rock music too: it has sensuality, sexuality and a subtlety that may not be initally apparent.

Finally an image that seems to me to get it about right, from the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. The moral here, I think, is that you can't have sex without breaking eggs. And maybe you don't want to.

1 comment:

  1. On the subject of Juicy Lucy - I'm sure on one record cover they used a picture of a naked woman trussed up and hung upside down in an abbatoir in a row of pig carcases! I cna't find this picture anywhere but surely I can't have imaginined this!?