156 of 164 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: 1000 Forms Of Fear (Audio CD)
Sia has had an unconventional trajectory. Diagnosed with Graves disease, boyfriend killed in a car accident, addiction to drugs and alcohol, attempted suicide. Plus, she hates fame so much that she poses with a paper bag over her head, and performs with her back facing audiences. Responsible for a plethora of international smashes for some of pop's biggest names, and while working on many other projects, there was still time to produce an own record. As the title and cover art might reveal, Sia goes back to her darker side for this, her 6th studio album, spiralling into destructive depths of weakness, vulnerability, desperation and struggles, all returning points for her.
Longtime fans know what to expect from her, new followers are probably curious to learn about the person behind the colossal hits. Perhaps all too aware of what the public wants from her, Sia gives the public exactly what they want. She offers strong and well-produced pop ballads, some uptempo tracks, and the occasional slower numbers, all accompanied with her unique and always impressive voice, the sound of someone singing for their life. She is dabbling with pop, experimenting once again with indie pop, electronica, acid jazz, soul, dance, and trip-hop. Produced by Lily Allen's former collaborator Greg Kurstin, they have sculpted a beautiful masterpiece of an album.
Her enrapturing talent and torment shines throughout "1000 Forms of fear"'s 49 minutes. Very often I found myself paying more attention to the lyric metaphors and the dramatic vocals, rather than enjoying the songs. Sia has a certain vibe in her music which, although it cannot be missed, it tends to overshadow the sonic excellence of this album. First single, "Chandelier" is indicative: a gorgeously reggae-electronica fused number about a never ending party life, with Sia's titanic voice bursting open the chorus like a cannonball; a closer reading between the lines makes clear that it is a song about alcoholism. It is obvious that the artist writes genius texts, this is her biggest talent, combined with her distinctive voice.
Built around sterling melodies, standouts "Big girls cry", "Straight to the knife", "Elastic heart", "Fire meet gasoline", "Cellophane", and "Dressed in black", they convey emotion that is unmatched by any other contemporary artist. Despite her personal hardship, Sia is able to produce exceptional power balladry and intelligent lyricism. "1000 Forms of fear" rings true to its dramatic title. It is a consistent, brilliant, deep pop record, by one of pop's best artists. After producing so many hits over the years, perhaps one's fear would be Sia's transformation into an mainstream artist. As long as she insists on performing wearing that paper back on her head, there is absolutely no fear of that happening.
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Showing 1-8 of 8 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 16 Aug 2014, 01:09:33 BST
One question, are you a professional music reviewer? If not, why not? This is a fantastic review of a truely unique talent. I just pray that Sia can overcome her anxieties and realise that she is loved by so many people.
In reply to an earlier post on 14 Sep 2014, 12:21:32 BST
Last edited by the author on 26 Jan 2016, 01:42:20 GMT
Mickram23, the attention her work has been receiving, thanks to her decision to not expose herself in public, has made Sia feel rather overwhelmed. She may have been in the industry for over a decade, but she finally seems to have been enjoying herself both professionally and personally. I believe many sympathize with her, I know I am.
I'd love to write professionally, I've been receiving positive feedback which is rather encouraging. Thanks for the nice comment, I appreciate it.
In reply to an earlier post on 5 Nov 2014, 13:28:06 GMT
Helpful Henry says:
You should start a music blog. I'm sure you will get plenty of followers given enough time.
Posted on 23 Jan 2015, 11:59:43 GMT
I'am simply echoing what the guys above have said. It was a fantastic review and helped convince me that this album was worth buying. I wasn't very pleased with her previous album, but newly released songs and your insightful review have helped. Thanks.
In reply to an earlier post on 24 Jan 2015, 12:45:51 GMT
Last edited by the author on 26 Jan 2016, 01:49:13 GMT
S. James and Paul, thanks for your nice words. Being a non-native speaker, and a hopeless perfectionist, it takes time and effort to write these reviews, so it's always nice to read positive and encouraging comments. Some artists's work calls for a more insightful reviewing, and Sia is certainly one of them. Even on my shorter reviews, I try to go a little deeper, not just write a simple opinion, I like to present pieces that I'd enjoy reading if I were a reader. Thanks again.
In reply to an earlier post on 17 Apr 2015, 21:04:08 BST
What's the point in my writing a review of this wonderful album - I wouldn't do it justice.
S. James and Paul speak for me, too, in saying that your review is fantastic. I need not say anymore ...
... except I remember, in 2001, I went to the Shepherd's Bush Empire in London to see Zero 7 perform - and, having heard Sia on their "Simple Things" album, knew how good she was. I bought "Some People Have Real Problems" after 'seeing her' (I use the term guardedly) on Jools Holland and thought the album was great - but this may be the best album I have heard by a female artist in donkey's years - since Joni Mitchell (different genre, I know, but Joni could do no wrong).
I need to get my act together and check out Sia's other albums.
Thanks again for the wonderful review.
Posted on 25 Jan 2016, 23:44:48 GMT
R. Moss says:
There is a short vid on You Tube of her working in the studio , where she feels comfortable so does not wear the bag , I echo others on here Scarlet Jupiter , a very good review , this lady makes me cry and there are few that can do that.
In reply to an earlier post on 2 Feb 2016, 21:27:37 GMT
Last edited by the author on 2 Feb 2016, 21:30:29 GMT
R. Moss, "1000 Forms of fear" is a small revelation. Sia has been around for ages, but only recently she became popular as a performer. As soon as I listened to "Chandelier", I knew the album would be as brilliant as it actually turned out to be. You might want to know that she's just released a follow-up which is just as good as its predecessor, called "This is acting" (I've written a review for it, too, if you want to read it).
Cloudberry, thanks for the nice words, hope you got to find more about Sia's past work. Greetings, everyone.
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