Christian Woman

Album: Bloody Kisses (1993)
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Songfacts®:

  • When Catholic guilt collides with carnal desire, the results can be... uneven. In "Christian Woman," Type O Negative lead singer Peter Steele explores this scenario based on real-life experience. In the liner notes to the 2009 reissue of the Bloody Kisses album, he explained:

    "I was, uh, incorporated with this girl. She was a Roman Catholic, much as I am. But she would get off on breaking the rules a little bit. She would ask me to dress up as a priest and, well, I guess you can just imagine what would happen after that. So, I guess you could say I have a bit of a priest infection."
  • "Christian Woman" was the lead single from Bloody Kisses, the third Type O Negative album. It marked a departure from their previous work, with a more melodic sound and Peter Steele singing in his low, operatic voice instead of screaming, hardcore style. It went over surprisingly well; the album earned a buzz, and umlauted acts like Queensrÿche and Mötley Crüe enlisted Type O as an opening act. Even after the album was released, the band members kept their day jobs (Steele worked for the New York City parks department) and had to be coaxed into quitting them so they could devote themselves to music full-time. The more they toured, the bigger their fanbase grew, and the album eventually sold a million copies in America, blowing away all expectations.

    And it wasn't just the size of their new fanbase that got the band's attention, it was also the composition. For the first time, women were coming to their shows, drawn to Steele's sensitive side and the more accessible sound. Asked about their move toward more pop-oriented music, the band explained that they were big fans of The Beatles and also of '80s rock, so those influences were always there. Their next album, October Rust (1996) was even more accessible and willfully targeted to their female fans.
  • The album version of "Christian Woman" runs 8:58 and is broken into three sections: "Body of Christ (Corpus Christi)," "To Love God," and "J.C. Looks Like Me." The single uses just the first section and runs 4:24. It was labeled the "New And Unimproved Version," and another edit was called the "Butt-Kissing, Sell-Out Version."

    Cutting down their songs for single and radio play was a sore spot for Type O Negative, but the only way they could get airplay. The "Christian Woman" edit was fairly straightforward because they could just shave off the last two sections, but trimming the next single, "Black No. 1 (Little Miss Scare-All)," from 11:15 to 4:38 was more of a challenge.
  • This is the second track on the album, preceded by 40 seconds of moaning by keyboard player Josh Silver's girlfriend on a track called "Machine Screw."
  • The music video was directed by Jon Reiss, who also made videos for Slayer ("Dittohead") and Nine Inch Nails ("Gave Up"). Like the song, it's very provocative, opening with a young woman praying to a crucifix. She's then joined by a man for some congress, although it's not clear if he's real or in her reverie.

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