Sia – We Are Born

It would seem Sia Furler has been on the fast track to success since the release of Colour The Small One. And prior to that, since she collaborated on Zero 7’s debut Simple Things.

Now Sia has released her fourth full length album. The only thing I had heard prior to listening to it, was that is was more uptempo than her previous work. It is an album Sia has apparently wanted to make for a very long time.

Sia is also quite a free spirit type of person, which the listener would not have guessed based on her previous work. Also despite the fact she makes music, she does not actually listen to music herself. And worth noting, she is vegetarian and encourages people to have their pets spayed and neutered to control animal overpopulation. Bob Barker would be proud.

The title from the new album came from the first words on the new album. This to avoid having to answer questions about where the album title came from. As that question came up a few (thousand) times during promotional work for Some People Have Real Problems.

Having just listened to Some People Have Real Problems, I would not have guessed the next album would be so upbeat, however Some People Have Real Problems does have a couple more uptempo tracks (“The Girl You Lost to Cocaine” and “Buttons”). The videos for both of those songs also gives a good insight into her upbeat personality. Go from those songs to “Breathe Me” and “Soon We’ll Be Found”, and it is hard to believe it is the same singer. Which goes to show how versatile a singer Sia is. The first line of this review came to me as I realised I have quickly become a Sia fan upon hearing We Are Born, and listening to Some People Have Real Problems as well.

We Are Born starts off with “The Fight”. With this track it is quickly evident how upbeat and uptempo it is, with a drum beat backing the track. It continues onto track two, “Clap Your Hands”, a more traditional pop song, with a very catchy chorus.

I do not consider myself to be too great at nailing down genres when listening to music, also I am not too big a fan of stapling genres to music all the time, however it can be of assistance when finding similar artists. Regardless, I like to check Wikipedia and All Music to see the genres of a specific album. We Are Born on Wikipedia is listed as “pop, dance-pop, soul jazz”. I was a little surprised too see the jazz label. “Be Good to Me” fits the soul jazz label well, it even hints at Amy Winehouse territory. Again, showing the great singing ability of Sia. It is more a mid tempo track, while the next track “Bring Night” brings back the uptempo spirit with a song backed by handclaps that will get the listeners head nodding to the beats, and singing along with the whoas and ohs!

If Some People Have Real Problems collided with Colour the Small One, “Hurting Me Now” could certainly be a resulting song, as it has the uptempo elements, yet also has a hauntingly good feel.

The album ends with a fantastic cover of Madonna’s “Oh Father”. Sia initially was going to personalise the lyrics somewhat, however that was disallowed by Madonna. It worked out well regardless.

Who knows where Sia would have been, or what albums may have been released if Six Feet Under had not used “Breathe Me”. However it is safe to say Sia has now solidified herself as an artist that will be around for years to come. We Are Born is a definite must have if you like pop music. No doubt it will be on many top ten lists at the end of this year!

A couple of sources used for this review:
“Sia frolics in the shallow end of the pop pool” – The Vancouver Sun
Sia artist spotlight on Last Call with Carson Daly

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