Love Is a Bourgeois Construct

by Peculate

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This is my very loose arrangement (ahem, derangement) of Pet Shop Boys' "Love Is a Bourgeois Construct."

It's an anti-love song with a side of barrel bombs, child slave labor, police brutality, natural disaster, and revolution.

You can listen to the original song here:

Composition credits: Norton/Pachelbel/Nyman/Tennant/Lowe/Purcell

SCORE available at

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Everything in this composition is based (albeit loosely) on the harmonic progression and primary theme of "Love Is a Bourgeois Construct"—which is in turn based on a composition by Michael Nyman, which itself is based on a composition by Henry Purcell. In my arrangement (derangement), this harmonic and melodic material is chromatically inverted and developed in a variety of ways.

The intro and outro of the composition also consist of counterpoint I composed based on this material and the theme of Pachelbel's Canon.

I was planning on releasing this song on Valentine's Day, but I did not finish it in time. Not a problem, however: It is relevant any time.


released March 1, 2015





Progressive math metal meets jazz-infused avant-garde classical music — Peculate is the solo project of composer and musician Ben Norton

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Track Name: Love Is a Bourgeois Construct
I don’t want your stupid chocolates,
made with processed cocoa,
grown and harvested by wage slaves,
on monoculture farms,
in impoverished 21st-century colonies.

I don’t want your stupid cards,
made with processed paper,
grown and harvested by wage slaves,
in disappearing rainforests,
in impoverished 21st-century colonies.

Don’t give me those stupid flowers,
grown and harvested by wage slaves,
who break their backs,
and poison their bodies with chemical pesticides,
just so you can show your vacuous “love,”
with empty acts of commercial kindness,
on a state-sanctioned holiday,
when they give you permission,
when the card and candy companies give you permission.

Love is a bourgeois construct,
used to distract us from our pain,
defined to maximize profit.

Who needs religion
as the Opiate of the Masses
when you have love,
almighty Love?

It’s the answer to everything.
Or so they say.
But you can’t just love all
the world’s material problems away.

You can’t eat love.
Love doesn’t fill empty stomachs.
And you can’t find shelter in love.
Love doesn’t house the homeless.

No matter how high the dose,
love won’t stop the endless war,
the ecocide, the exploitation,
the poverty, the plight of the poor.

The oppressed couldn't care less if you pretend to love them.
They don’t need your condescending charity.
They just want the oppression to end.
The world doesn’t need love;
it needs solidarity.

Love is a bourgeois construct,
used to distract us from our pain,
defined to maximize profit.
It doesn’t have to be this way;
capitalism kills love.
Destroy capitalism to save it.