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Meaning of the song ‘Contaminated’ by ‘BANKS’

Dark Light

Released: 2019

“Contaminated” by BANKS is a deep dive into the murky waters of a tainted love affair that’s both complex and enticing. The lady casts a critical gaze over the psychological struggles of a love she wishes she could change but realizes its inherent contamination, a theme revolving around love’s intoxicating but inherently damaging attributes.

The song commences with, “You wanna get to know me/You memorized the lines of my thighs”. BANKS uses clever wordplay, indicating a deep level of intimacy where her lover not just physically, but metaphorically remembers the nuances of their relationship. Here, “lines of my thighs” could represent moments of vulnerability and closeness.

When BANKS sings, “And you took the dark for granted/And you love me like you/Promised your wife”, she’s criticizing her lover for not honoring commitments, showing how promises made in love can differ from actions. The reference to “the dark” points to elements within their relationship that they’ve ignored or have chosen not to recognize. That’s some heavy emotions bottled up.

The recurring lyric, “Ooh I can attain it” lays bare the struggle. It’s like she’s fighting within herself, chasing something she knows might ruin her. That’s the addiction element in tainted love, where the hope of attainability keeps you hooked.

The chorus, “And we’re always gonna be / Contaminated / And oh / I know what we need / You start letting me go / Our love is tainted”, sees BANKS laying it bare. She acknowledges their love as contaminated, something toxic yet addictive. The repetition of ‘letting me go’ tells us about the love’s suffocating nature. It’s a cry for freedom emphasizing the need for release even with the acknowledgment that it’s hard to let go of unhealthy, yet profound love.

The verse, “You said they’d be against us / I say you care too much what they say / You said ‘do me a favor gimme some faith’ / ‘Cause you promised me you’d do it”, sees BANKS grappling with external influences on their relationship. Here, the faith requested is a plea for belief in their love, despite its tainted nature, and contrary to the opinions of others.

In the lines, “This is the face of someone who loves you babe.”, Banks drops a powerful sentiment, reaffirming her love despite all the contamination and external dismissal. It’s an open and vulnerable moment, confessing her love despite the situation’s complexity.

In a nutshell, “Contaminated” is a raw, emotional rollercoaster exploring the grappling themes of a tainted, addictive love. The narrative is robust, emotional, and heartfelt—it’s BANKS distilling the essence of a human condition we often find ourselves entangled in, making it a profound addition to any hip-hop playlist.

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