Of course, Sia’s rasping, treacly, athletic tones have been pounding the airwaves for months now. She’s not new. But I’ve come around to her slowly, and after a lot of listens to 1000 Forms of Fear, I think it’s a truly great album.
It’s a weird one, though: this voice isn’t instantly likeable. It ranges from incomprehensible (AnIwannitIwanmylifesobaad WHAT) to shrieky, so unusual I assumed she must be some sort of elusive Scandi type before reading up on her (she’s Aussie). But once you tune into the words, they’re pretty profound, and painful. And there’s something about the production and drums on it that make me go back again and again.
THEN you read up on Sia herself and realise she’s totally kickass, a 39-year-old, anti-fame maverick who’s as playful with her public appearances as her arty videos. She simply doesn’t do ‘promo’. And judging by the way this album crept up on me, she doesn’t have to.
Top tracks: Elastic Heart, Fair Game, Big Girls Cry.