North Pointe Now

Sia releases captivating new album

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By Alex Harring, Staff Reporter

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Rating: 4 stars

In her lyrics, Sia claims to not care about singing on key, but someone on her team must. Her new album, This Is Acting, is by far her most powerful set yet. Boasting a power-plop sound, Sia clearly moved past provocative cage dancing to convey her message.

The beginning of the album is just as hummable as the tunes that put her on the charts. Broody numbers like “Birds Set Free” and “Alive” open the album and show off the classic Sia: mysterious, chilling and loose. Repeating lyrics accompany layered melodies, making listeners reminiscent of Sia’s former pieces, such as “Elastic Heart”.

As the album progresses, the tracks become more cerebral. Songs like “One Million Bullets” and “Unstoppable” deliver depth to the album, similar to what “Chandelier” did for 1000 Forms of Fear. Even though her voice sounds over-produced at times, it’s that pile-driving sound that makes Sia’s album and brand captivating.

Although the album’s vibe may change across its twelve-song set, specific musical elements connect the various songs making it unified. This Is Acting delivers a noticeable, angular rhythm throughout. Similarities, like the rhythm, allow the pieces to be intertwined, even with the differences in style and message. Robotic and pulsating songs like “Cheap Thrills” and “Reaper” are balanced with hypnotic, lyrical pieces such as “Space Between” to give the audience a diverse set.

It’s clear that the girl masked by the wig has done it again. Sia’s new album, This Is Acting, brings a rhythmic, soulful sound that couldn’t be hidden even if she tried.

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