Rocky Horror purists who have been wringing their hands with worry over Fox’s upcoming The Rocky Horror Picture Show: Let’s Do The Time Warp Again finally have a full-length track that will either alleviate or add to their concerns: Nickelodeon veteran Victoria Justice’s remake of “Touch A Touch A Touch A Touch Me,” a lusty little number performed in the 1975 film by Susan Sarandon, is now available for streaming.
In a way, “Touch A” is the song that best encapsulates much of the Rocky Horror phenomenon. Both the film and the original stage musical are about taking bland, repressed suburbanites out of their comfort zone and indoctrinating them into the world of sex and decadence, and virginal heroine Janet Weiss gets to address those themes very directly in this number. At first, she talks about her aversion to sins of the flesh: “I thought there’s no use getting into heavy petting.” But, as the song progresses, she shows a naughty side: “I’ve tasted blood and I want more.” Transitioning from child stardom to a more mature career, Justice may be able to relate to this song on a personal level. So how does she handle it?
This new “Touch A Touch A Touch A Touch Me” is perfectly adequate and professional, if not terribly memorable on first listen. Justice is much more of a trained singer than Sarandon, but the latter brought a good deal more humor to the song. Justice seems to take the song more seriously, as if it’s a precious artifact she doesn’t want to break. Arrangement-wise, the twangy, spare verses are somewhat reminiscent of the music Nancy Sinatra once made with Lee Hazlewood. The chorus has been given a more modern pop sound, but this is not a drastic makeover either.
If this song is any indication, the new Rocky Horror will be familiar in many ways while still striving to be contemporary. The complete soundtrack is available for pre-order on iTunes now and is scheduled for release on October 21, the same day as the Rocky Horror live TV event.