First Hit #1: April 30, 2011
The difficulty with making a pop song about sex is that you’re still trying to get radio play. So you can do innuendo, sure, but going overt in your sexual references is going to cause the clutching of pearls. This might explain why S&M was a one week wonder, and definitely explains why the video was repeatedly banned – Rihanna isn’t very interested in couching her sexy sex talk in metaphor here, and even though it’s another pretty decent bit of dance music from Loud, an album that was seemingly made with the shuffle function of your music player of choice in mind. It’s surprisingly not that sexy, Rihanna is just shouting about whips and chains and the throbbing beat is not the most erotic form of throbbing beat you can get. It’s more about the shock than the sex, and it definitely does give the shock half of the equation its full weight – this is just trying to provoke, and while it worked it’s probably a bit too transparent that this was the sole intent.
Also, does anyone actually love the smell of sex?