Number 10


  • This raw and gritty song finds Paul Banks relating a tension-filled love story between a domineering boss lady named Ella and her employee. The Interpol frontman recounts their unconsummated desire for each other from the employee's perspective.

    Your secret's safe here, it'll never leave
    It's in the basement for ya, na'mean?
    Won't seek replacements, my ballerina
    There's many faces in my gallery

    The pair are determined to keep their office romance secret.
  • The song title does not appear in the lyrics; it alludes to the fact that it is the tenth track on Interpol's Marauder album.
  • Paul Banks explained to NPR: "The lyrics are about an office drama. The narrator is tired of his supervisor, Ella breathing down his neck. She's a tough boss. But there is also a love there, a secret attraction. A mutual secret attraction. But alas, business is business and their desire is never sated. I think that feeling of frustration and desire suits the temperament of the music. The flighty intensity. Pent up lust."
  • The song was originally earmarked to be a B-side, rather than an album track. Banks explained:

    "I had written a fun surfy baseline that jived well with the drums but I was never super stoked on the song. In the studio we just recorded it because we had some time. But there was no second guitar and no vocals.
    When we tracked it, it came out really explosive and fun. The additional guitars and vocals were written in a few hours over two afternoons. No fuss no muss."


Be the first to comment...

Editor's Picks

Van Dyke ParksSongwriter Interviews

U2, Carly Simon, Joanna Newsom, Brian Wilson and Fiona Apple have all gone to Van Dyke Parks to make their songs exceptional.

Songs Discussed in MoviesSong Writing

Bridesmaids, Reservoir Dogs, Willy Wonka - just a few of the flicks where characters discuss specific songs, sometimes as a prelude to murder.

Def Leppard QuizMusic Quiz

Can you name Def Leppard's only #1 hit in America? Get rocked with this adrenalized quiz.

Sending Out An SOS - Distress Signals In SongsSong Writing

Songs where something goes horribly wrong (literally or metaphorically), and help is needed right away.

Al KooperSongwriter Interviews

Kooper produced Lynyrd Skynyrd, played with Dylan and the Stones, and formed BS&T.

Tanita TikaramSongwriter Interviews

When she released her first album in 1988, Tanita became a UK singing sensation at age 19. She talks about her darkly sensual voice and quirky songwriting style.