.Australian Music.

‘We Are Born’ – Sia.

‘We Are Born, without a care, as we grow old, but unaware. As we grow tall, begin to falter, we want to know ourselves, spread love to all. But we fall down cause we are human, yes sweet anger will feed the hunger, oh yes we push through, just me and you’.

I waited two whole months for this album to come out, and it finally arrived on the 18th June 2010… and I almost peed my pants.

The album begins in a ‘poppy’ tone with ‘The Fight‘. At the beginning of this song is a “chant like” round which at first I thought was “Yea boy, Yea boy, Yea boy”; but unbeknownst to me at the time, it is actually “We Are Born, We Are born, We Are Born” with the emphAsis on weird syllAbles .

To my utter shame and dismay, it was only when I was belting out the lyrics and dancing around in my lounge room with my little sister, did I finally and ever so abruptly (with a kick up the arse) find out that “Ooooooh my gosh Liiiiiz zzzz zzz zzzz zzzzzzzzz. You’re such an idiot. What were you saying?! Yea Boy?!? It’s not that you loser. It’s ‘We Are Born’. I pretty much shrunk.

Sia’s new album is definitely not on par with my outrageous level of ridicule however; this is her most ‘pop’ record yet. In a recent interview with Sia Furler, she reveals that the songs compiled on this album are not so much freshly written as they sound. Her barrier between her and the pop world was caused by a limitation placed upon her by her previous record companies. She was bonded to a more melancholic, down-tempo style of music for a long time following her big hit; “Breathe Me” which was released in April 2004 (and which has featured in many different types of media to this date). In simple words; Sia’s talent wasn’t given wings until recently, and now she has taken off.

Most of the songs on this record were written a while ago, and now that she has been granted the permission to write a pop album, all her pop songs are coming to the surface; and she’s had an awesome response so far.  

Both singles released from this album (‘You’ve Changed’ and ‘Clap Your Hands’) have done incredibly well on today’s charts, with both songs becoming ‘house-hold’ names. Even walking around the shopping mall recently I’ve heard ‘Clap Yours Hands’ blaring in ‘Diva’ and ‘General Pants’. Whilst I am happy for Sia and her success, I’m a little bummed to be honest. I’ve been a long time Sia fan, and now that she’s becoming more popular she’ll be doing huge gigs at places like Acer Arena, and I’ll be stuck up the front with all these teeny-bopper chicky-babes throwing their hair around and doing the twist… kill me now. She was good at pub gigs and little venues; leave it don’t kill it.

The album follows quite a basic ‘Pop’ sequence. There isn’t too much variety in the style of music on this album; however that is only fair enough considering the many years she has been held back from releasing her up-tempo stuff. You’ve heard her more melancholic music on her albums ‘Healing is Difficult’ and ‘Colour the Small One’; now shut up and hear the woman out. ‘The Fight’, ‘You’ve Changed’‘Clap Your Hands‘, ‘Big Girl, Little Girl’, ‘Never Gonna Leave Me’, ‘Bring Night’ and ‘The Co-Dependent‘ set the pace for the album, and are a consistent level throughout.

There are less ‘poppy’ songs on the album like; ‘Be Good To Me’, ‘I’m In Here’ (which is also repeated as an acoustic bonus track on the end of the album) and ‘Cloud’. These tracks do add some sort of brain food, but the majority of the album is in an exciting, poppy style.

Sia has a childlike finesse about her. It’s quite unique; not like a Regina Spektor sort of style, but her own ‘innocent / childish ‘ style – despite her being quite un-innocent in reality. Her stage sets consist of scribbled drawings and glow sticks, and her costumes are all quite op-shop-ish and cute. Sia has her own style (unlike Miss Lady Gag-Gag or P!nk). She puts herself out on a ledge with her boisterous nature, tight blue dresses and short blonde bob.

Pop music has become somewhat known as a ‘mainstream’ genre, and everything that is played on the radio has automatically been classed as ‘pop’ for this reason. However, Pop is its own genre just as metal, thrash, funk, rock, jazz, motown and classical music are. To best describe ‘Pop’ I would like to bring to your attention the great musician and artist ‘Gordon Sumner’ or more commonly known as ‘Sting’. Sting is a pop artist; however his music is an incorporation of a lot of different styles of music. This is what I believe ‘Pop’ music to be; lighter, happier, layered, consistent, singable, melodic and bright. ‘Pop’ music isn’t simply just mainstream music; it’s a specific genre, just like any other.

Now, some of you may disagree and state that ‘the reason ‘Pop’ music is called ‘Pop’, is because the word ‘Pop’ is short for popular”; and to this I say “NAY T’ISNT”. It may just happen to be that there is some sort of linguistically relative concept within the word ‘popular’, but this word is also an onomatopoeic word used to describe ‘ a short, quick, explosive sound‘ (accordingly to dictionary.com). Is not most ‘Pop’ music also of this nature? Short, quick and explosive?

To be honest, I don’t like a lot of the mainstream music that is currently being played on the radio these days. Quite frankly it’s crap. It seems that society in general has lowered its standards and expectations regarding the music it likes. It has replaced its hunger for decent musical talent, for a desire for a nice butt and chiselled abs; a musical prawn – nice face, crap voice.

Despite society’s crap music taste; I am proud to say that I don’t care if Sia goes platinum. I love her music, I love her attitude and I love her crazy blonde bob. They can pump her music all they like in ‘Diva’, for I shall remain a faithful follower of decent ‘Pop’ music.

Overall, I dub this album with 5 STARS. It is ‘Pop’ perfection, and I would recommend it to anyone who does not like mainstream crap, but who does like well produced music. This album is a layered bubble of sound; nice bass, a good treble, and a flamboyant beat. Amen.

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