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Paul McCartney: music legend, Liverpool myth, Kanye West-collaborator, bounciest and most benign of Her Majesty’s knights, 76-year-old father of five, and author of the new hit single “Fuh You”.
“Fuh You”: an island bop, sounds like it could have been written by notorious cringe-pop group Imagine Dragons, a song about a woman who makes Paul McCartney want to commit robberies, also, a song about Paul McCartney almost but not actually getting laid.
Who could have anticipated that alongside artists like Childish Gambino and Ariana Grande, Paul McCartney would join the ranks of the 2018 summer hits crew. “Fuh You” is a song of strange and entrancing duplicities: on the one hand, you have a powerful pop structure, a beat so catchy and cheerful that it makes you feel like you’re jumping on Elton John’s water bed in moon boots.
On the other hand, you have an undisguised song about diddling being sung by a 76-year-old pop star with the voice and face of your grandfather.
The key to the song’s success lies in its ability to bury the unsolicited sex-talk of an ex-Beatle in an opiate of familiarity. As the song begins, we get that sunshine-soaked beat, the promise of a “Band On The Run” style safety-bop. We feel nothing but comfort as Paul begins to lay out the plot of another classic love song, “I can stay up half the night, trying to crack your code / I can stay up half the night, but I’d rather hit the road”.
Alas, this is but the polite offering of an Advil before the doctor readies the colonoscopy scope. Disaster strikes when Paul brings the chorus around; the chorus we all knew was coming but didn’t want to believe could affect us.
With the voice we all know so well, the same voice that has soothed us at our darkest hours with songs like “Let It Be” or “Till There Was You,” Paul launches into the stratosphere of hedonistic self-destruction, warbling: “I just wanna fuh you, I just wanna fuh you”.
“I Can Still Bone” the song might have been called. My question is this: why “fuh”? Is it an ode to mumble-rap? A bid to stay radio-friendly while still packing a punch? Or is it because, in his heart of hearts, Paul knows that few humans could survive the blow of having a man they’ve known and loved since childhood, the Mr. Rogers of rock & roll, the purest of The Beatles, put his mouth to their ear and say, with strain and earnestness, “I just wanna fuck you”.
There’s no doubt in my mind, that hard “ck” sound, uttered by Paul McCartney, could mean the fall of our civilization. I suppose we should all be grateful that Paul stayed his hand. Nevertheless, “Fuh You” is wondrously catchy and almost impossible to listen to just once. With this bold and spicy single, equal parts pain and pleasure, Sir Paul proves that he is still fully capable of fuh’ing his way to the top.
By Emily Yaremchuk