Sleeping with someone for the first time is always a daunting proposition (unless your name is Ron Jeremy). You’ve both suffered through the excitement and pain of trying to decode each others flirtatious signals, passed the first kiss examination and reached a point where you’ve connected (or drunk) enough to want to rip each others clothes off.
It’s the lust and intimacy on that night together which is at the core of Wild Beasts “Plaything”. Taken from their latest (and best) album “Smother” it’s simple bass and drum lines radiate like the heartbeat of a lovers body. The vocals are delivered in whispers of pillow talk that are perfectly balanced against such a sparse production, however it’s the subtext of the lyrics that make the track truly great.
When lead singer Hayden Thorpe croons “I’m wondering, how cruel I’ve been?” your thoughts start asking questions. Why is it cruel? What is he hiding? So when he sings “I’ve ransacked myself, I’ve flat packed myself for your ease” your suspicions have already been aroused. Is he being vulnerable or emotionally disconnected? After all he’s comparing sex with Ikea’s greatest invention.
These questions are never resolved, allowing the listener to fill in the blanks with their own imagination. It makes the track something of a Rorschach test, where there’s no right answer other than the one you provide for yourself. Which could reveal more about your own sexual nature than you’d like to know.