What You Need To Know - January 29, 2016

Sia's This Is Acting: What You Need To Know
by James
by James hmv London, Bio "Like the legend of the Phoenix, I've just eaten a whole packet of chocolate HobNobs..." Editor, hmv.com

Sia's This Is Acting: What You Need To Know

Sia Furler's career has taken a route more unusual than most. First emerging onto the scene as a backing vocalist for Jamiroquai in the late 1990s, then as lead vocalist for electronic chill merchants Zero 7 in the early 2000s, Sia enjoyed patches of success over the next decade or so, slowly growing an audience in the US with tracks included on shows like Six Feet Under and scoring the odd hit with songs like 'The Girl You Lost To Cocaine' before being approached by Christina Aguilera in 2009 to write some ballads for her Bionic album.

Since then, her career as both a songwriter and an artist in her own right has gone from strength to strength, penning hits for the likes of Rihanna, Britney Spears and Beyonce while scoring plenty of her own, including 'Chandelier' and 'Elastic Heart', both of which featured on her last album 1000 Forms of Fear.

This week sees the release of the follow-up, This is Acting, which includes among its track list the single 'Alive', a song originally written with Adele for her 25 album before the chart-busting singer had a change of heart and Sia decided to keep the track for herself. The album hits the shelves today, here's everything else you need to know about it...

Who's producing it?

The majority of This is Acting is produced by Greg Kurstin, who himself has contributed three songs to Adele's 25, as well as having worked with a range of artists from Beck and The Shins to Kylie Minogue and Ellie Goulding. Elsewhere there are production credits for Tobias Jesso Jr., who worked on 'Alive' along with Sia and Adele, as well as Kanye West, who has produced and co-written on of the albums tracks, 'Reaper'.


Any special guests?

Nope. Besides the handful of co-writers and producers that have contributed to the album, This Is Acting is pretty much all Sia.


Does it deliver?

If 1000 Forms of Fear was the sound of Sia really hitting her stride as a solo artist, that's very much continued on This Is Acting. Equally at home with powerful ballads like the piano-led opener 'Bird Set Free' and shimmering electro-pop anthems in the vein of 'Cheap Thrills', Sia has grasped a winning formula here and her talent as a songwriter is matched by her vocal performances on sings like the huge-sounding 'Alive' and 'One Million Bullets'. Kanye's touch on 'Reaper' is a light one and the track fits neatly into an album that takes in a wealth if influences while still maintaining a very definite sound of its own. If you've been enjoying her output over the last few years, tis is well worth adding to your collection.


This is Acting is available in stores and online now. You can also preview and download the album at the top right of this page...

This Is Acting
This Is Acting Sia

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