Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines" has taken the internet and airwaves by storm, thanks to a combination of a catchy Pharrell Williams–approved beat, cheeky lyrics just risqué enough to spark a few minutes of attention-grabbing controversy, and — above all, perhaps — that notorious unrated "Blurred Lines" music video.
It's a safe bet that the success of Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines" was boosted significantly by the unrated version of the video, which features the 36-year-old R&B vocalist along with Williams, rapper T.I., and a glowing bevy of topless models in nude thongs and white sneakers, pursing bold red lips as their bare breasts bounce lightly along with the flirtatious summer anthem.
"I feel so lucky / you wanna hug me," Thicke croons sweetly into the ear of brunette model Emily Ratajkowski before pondering, "What rhymes with hug me?"
Of course, Robin Thicke has more in his toolkit than boobs and ambiguously sexual rhetorical questions. "Blurred Lines" is incredibly catchy, with a weirdly magnetic plunking bass line (Thicke describes it as "banjo-like"), minimalist percussion and a sprinkling of well-placed whoops from Pharrell. But the combination of a catchy beat, mildly controversial but appealing lyrics, and an unrated video full of pretty girls and their nipples has proved much more potent than any one of those ingredients would have been alone.
In fact, Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines" is even bigger than you might think. Interscope Records, Robin Thicke's label, issued a press release Friday announcing that "Blurred Lines" has "broken the record for the highest radio audience every recorded. As of this week, the track has reached more than 242.65 million listeners" across a number of formats, the label said.
The most impressive thing about the success of "Blurred Lines" is that it is far from Thicke's first effort. The sexy song is the title track of Thicke's sixth studio album, which hits stores next week. The smooth-talking crooner had already been plugging away at the soul thing for awhile now before "Blurred Lines" launched him into the mainstream big time, which is great news for new listeners, who will have plenty more of Thicke to get into if the rest of Blurred Lines doesn't break the spell.