Sex, Drugs, Rock & Roll:
The Velvet Underground Loaded
To start with, let's check out a record which is the perfect musical instigation for that classic melange of sex, drugs and rock & roll. The Velvet Underground have always been the musical apex of all three ingredients, so it makes a lot of sense to spin them when you're still buzzing from a night out. Loaded isn't their most famous album, but it's probably the best to get down to. The more celebrated Velvet Underground & Nico has its fair share of sensual pop songs but also kills the mood frequently with tales of heroin abuse and dense feedback experiments. Their self-titled LP also shows promise as a make-out album but is a bit too relaxed and post-coital for its own good. With its glam rock verve, drug-addled atmosphere, hip-shaking guitar riffs and sweetly climaxing pop choruses, this LP is the perfect soundtrack to fumbling around in the back of a car in the dim of the dashboard light with someone of the opposite sex.
See Also: T-Rex Electric Warrior, The Rolling Stones Some Girls, David Bowie Let's Dance.
Marvin Gaye Let's Get It On
If you get yourself into the situation where you've invited someone back for coffee, it's 3am and you're standing together in the kitchen with tentative awkwardness, there's a very easy way to translate the state of affairs into a hot and heavy bedroom scene. Simply grab Let's Get It On from the shelf, and on Side One, Track One, you can unleash the initiator for a billion pregnancies. Along with tracks like 'You Sure Love to Ball', full to the brim of sweaty shag-sounds, this is a record tailor-made for bonking, to a level that even pint-sized fuck terrier Prince couldn't hope to reach. As Marvin himself said, 'I don't believe in overly moralistic philosophies. Have your sex, it can be exciting, if you're lucky. I hope the music that I present here makes you lucky.' He's being modest; it's hard not to get lucky when this is on the stereo.
See Also: D'Angelo Voodoo, Barry White Complete Discography, Isaac Hayes Hot Buttered Soul.
Slow, Deep and Hard:
Serge Gainsbourg & Jane Birkin Je t'aime... Moi Non Plus
It's an obvious one, but the pairing of lovers Serge Gainsbourg (who, despite looking like sleaze personified managed to bed pretty much every mythologically beautiful French woman of the Sixties) and Jane Birkin is an eternal staple of love-making music. The whole LP is a throbbing totem to physical love, each bass note trembling with desire and each buzz of wah-wah guitar a narcotic thrill. The centre-piece, 'Je t'aime... Moi Non Plus' is the true classic, a masterpiece of soft, funky eroticism that combines two adoring, barely-contained vocals from Serge and Jane that spill into impassioned moaning and groaning that puts even the orgasms on Guns & Roses 'Rocket Queen' to shame. It's the kind of record that makes you look at your shoes when you're watching Top of the Pops 2 with your mum, but in the bedroom it's a revelation.
See Also: Chris Isaak Forever Blue, Francoise Hardy La Question, Massive Attack Mezzanine.
My Bloody Valentine Loveless
If you've headed out on a twee date, catching a black and white French film at City Screen before eating an atmospheric meal at some non-chain restaurant in the glow of the lights reflected in the river, be sure to have this lying on the record player when you make it home. As well as being a touchstone of hip for almost two decades, Loveless (despite its title) is the perfect dreamy make-out record. While recent Mercury Prize snaggers The XX are currently the go-to for seducing those of the indie persuasion, My Bloody Valentine blow them out of the water with the lush, velvety textures of Kevin Shields' meticulously carved feedback, a wall of sound that chimes with a thousand first kisses. Bilinda Butcher's waiflike, breathy vocals drift over the thunderstorms of candy-coated noise in an enchantingly woozy fashion; this is the perfect record to drift off into the night to with someone you love.
See Also: Cocteau Twins Heaven or Las Vegas, The XX XX, Jesus and Mary Chain Darklands.
Leonard Cohen The Best of Leonard Cohen
In the sleepy, half-woken morning you may well want to roll over and have one for the road in the golden light of daytime. In which case, you've got to opt for Mr. Cohen. Without doubt the high priest of the erotic, this man knows how to please a lady more than Casanova and Johnny Depp combined. With such swooning couplets as 'I loved you in the morning, our kisses deep and warm / Your hair upon the pillow, like a sleepy golden storm', how could anyone resist him? This album, collecting his finest early acoustic hymnals is the perfect record to soundtrack long mornings lying entwined in bed, sunlight dappling through the curtains, best enjoyed to coffee and cigarettes. If you feel love stirring deep within you after a night of passion, there's no better way to conjure a romantic spell than with Leonard's dusky baritone and tales of bohemian affairs that will forever live and breathe in his songs.
See Also: Tom Waits Closing Time, Bob Dylan Nashville Skyline, Bright Eyes I'm Wide Awake It's Morning.
John Coltrane A Love Supreme
For the classier lady or gent, there's no jazz smoother or more tantalising than the passionate power of mid-Sixties Coltrane. Romantic, loose and energetic, you can't really go wrong with these washing cymbals and crooning saxophone lines. While it's an undoubtedly spiritual album, its mantra-like qualities lend themselves to long bouts of Sting-and-Trudie style tantric love. Just a few minutes into Side One and there'll be suit trousers and ballgowns tossed about the room; this really is too classy to shag to up against a bin in an alley by Efe's. Sorry Ziggys fans. You've got to show this album some respect - only get down to it if you're going to end up as two souls forever intertwined, reaching sexual enlightenment by the fireplace. Forgive the muso pun, but spin this in a compromising situation and it can only lead to a 'hard bop'.
See Also: Django Reinhardt The Best Of Django Reinhardt, Lester Young & Teddy Wilson Pres & Teddy, Jimmy Smith Walk on the Wild Side.
Doing It Rough:
Nine Inch Nails The Downward Spiral
Not everyone likes it gentle. As anyone who's watched Sexcetera late night on Freeview will know, there's a whole world of hurtin' kinda love out there. So if your partner whips out the leather chaps, ball-gag and whips don't scream like a fairy and run for the window. The fall would probably be more painful than the sex, anyway. While BDSM has recently slapped and thrusted its way into the pop world with the likes of Rihanna espousing the joys of doing it rough, breathe deep and reach for this 90's industrial classic instead. With it's soundscapes of filthy synth-bass and Trent Reznor's breathy, frustrated delivery, it's a one way ticket to pain town. Especially with lyrics like 'You let me desecrate you' - ooh err. Word of warning though; if, like me, you hail from a rural background, don't try this at home. Trent yells 'I'm gonna fuck you like an animal' quite a bit... Don't want anyone getting the wrong idea.
See Also: Marilyn Manson Mechanical Animals, Smashing Pumpkins Adore, Cradle of Filth Nymphetamine.
Only the Lonely:
The Divinyls I Touch Myself
Of course, if you look like the Elephant Man or suffer from chronic halitosis, you may well be spending tonight curled up on the shower floor, weeping and alone. But don't be tempted to play Celine Dion's 'All By Myself' for god's sake. Instead, pull yourself together, make yourself a dainty candlelit meal, treat yourself to a glass of full-bodied red wine and have a good old fashioned night of self-love. There's no shame in masturbation, especially when you can make a whole mixtape out of pop songs with wanking sub-texts. And what better way to finish than to the glorious strains of 80's one-hit wonders The Divinyls' 'I Touch Myself', which is probably playing in Reflex as I type. Don't be sad, now: be your own best friend. Bash the bishop. Go a couple of rounds with ol' Josh. Make the bald man cry. Badger the witness. Date Handrea and Palmela. As Woody Allen said, 'don't knock masturbation. It's sex with someone I love'.
See Also: The Buzzcocks Orgasm Addict, The Vapors Turning Japanese, Cyndi Lauper She Bop.