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Readers recommend playlist: songs about obsession

Thom Yorke of Radiohead
Everything in its right place … Thom Yorke of Radiohead. Photograph: Jim Dyson/Getty Images

Here is this week’s playlist – songs picked by a reader from hundreds of suggestions on last week’s callout. Thanks for taking part. Read more about how our weekly series works at the end of the piece.

I sought your suggestions with a relatively open remit for interpretations, and some readers shared songs they obsess over, but many of those featuring in our playlist this week contain lyrics that describe a deep passion and compulsion towards something or someone as the object of the artist’s obsession.

The playlist on YouTube.

If you feel an affinity with Gang of Four’s Outside the Trains Don’t Run on Time (“Order – he’s obsessed with order / Discipline is his passion”), misplaced and mistimed items become an obstacle to your search for order in the home and out. So you might want, as do Radiohead, Everything in Its Right Place. But even still, sounds might set you on edge, as in Juana Molina’s Ferocisimo, a song whose narrator – says our Spanish-speaking nominator – is “obsessed with the noise around her”.

You might have a little fun with your obsessions, as with Beatrice Eli and her Girls – “I’ve got the girls on my mind all the time (all the time)” – or Fine Young Cannibals on their 1989 hit She Drives Me Crazy, in which, memorably: “She drives me crazy like no one else / She drive me crazy and I can’t help myself.”

Your romantic obsessions may inevitably take on a dark side, as in Dinah Washington’s Mad About the Boy (“I know it’s stupid to be mad about the boy”) or Moses and Joshua Dillard’s My Elusive Dreams. They are overtly unhinged when they sound like Steven Wilson’s Index.

Unhinged obsessions can feed each other, as in Jane’s Addiction’s Ted, Just Admit It... What explains the 1980s era media and societal fixation on the crimes of Ted Bundy? Let’s not think about that too long and hard when we can put John Martyn’s The Easy Blues on repeat instead.

New theme: how to join in

The next theme will be announced at 8pm (GMT) on Thursday 1 February. You will have until 11pm on Monday 5 February to submit nominations.

Here is a reminder of some of the guidelines for readers recommend:

This article titled "Readers recommend playlist: songs about obsession" was written by Samantha Birchard, for theguardian.com on Thursday 1 February 2018 12.00pm

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