16. Suede – Animal Nitrate

He said he’d show you his bed and the delights of a chemical smile.

Suede may have had a string of hits, but in my brain there’s only the one. I am not a fan of Suede and the only thing of theirs I can name is Animal Nitrate, but that song has been capturing my attention for fifteen years. Rage would play the video and I’d stare at it, amazed by the music and by Brett Anderson’s floppy hair.

The music is dominated by Bernard Butler’s guitar playing. Every line in this song is outstanding – the intro builds up the tension and I feel something big is going to happen, then the verse cuts through with a riff so good that it obliterates the rest of the band. Bernard has fired an Imperius curse at me and I am compelled to listen to him alone.

The lyrics are about an abusive gay relationship and in the video Brett works his androgyny. He has the hair, he shows off his flat belly, he stares with his innocent-little-boy eyes. He even bites his knuckle. (At 2:36 – I had to go back and check.) He sings with a falsetto edge, like a country singer. In some cultures they call it yodelling.



When I see the lady in the leopard print bikini I am reminded of Mrs. Biggs, the the fat cleaner in Porterhouse Blue who seduces Zipser. I’m sure you can find the clip somewhere online if you’re into that sort of thing.


Next: 15. Abba – Dancing Queen

Previous: 17. Roxy Music – Same Old Scene


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