Monday, March 17, 2014

Sia & Cher Lloyd: It's all gone mid-tempo

I blame Katy Perry.

Ever since Firework became a multi-platinum worldwide soundtrack to a generation (© Pepsi), pop has gone mad for midtempo. We Are Young, Diamonds, Roar, Wrecking Ball, the entire oeuvre of Emeli Sande: If you hooked them up to a cardiac monitor, an alarm would go off.

Still, if the BPM is going to hover around 87, then you could do worse than these two songs - both "hot off the presses" (freshly delivered from a record company Macbook) this weekend.

First up is Sia - who, along with Perry, is the chief architect of mid-tempo's popularity, having written Diamonds for Rihanna and Pretty Hurts for Beyonce, amongst dozens of others.

Chandelier is the first single from her forthcoming solo album. She recently told Billboard she "doesn't want to be famous" - but releasing a stunning, euphoric pop record won't help on that front.

Sia - Chandelier

If you're interested in the lyrics to that song, by the way, Sia herself has been annotating them on RapGenius. Turns out she hasn't actually swung from a chandelier, but would like to one day. So now you know.

Meanwhile, Cher Lloyd (remember her?) has been off in America working on her second album. It was supposed to come out last November but, in a rather candid interview, Lloyd basically admitted it wasn't good enough and she was going back to the studio "to try and find some more magic".

It seems to have worked... Sirens, the singer's second attempt at a first single, has a chorus so strong it almost eradicates the memory of Swagger Jagger.

The song premiered last Friday on the Sirius XM Hits One Morning Mashup, which is probably the least memorable breakfast show title since "Nick Grimshaw's Breakfast Show".

So there you have it: Mid-tempo wins. It's all ballads from here til Christmas. You only have yourselves to blame.

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