Monday, July 6, 2009

Single Review: Battlefield

I wouldn't be a very good American Idol fan if I didn't review the latest single from one of my favorite winners, Jordin Sparks. On July 21st, the pop ingenue is dropping her sophomore CD, Battlefield. Based on the strength of her lead single (using the wildly original title, Battlefield), I have high hopes for this disc.

Let's get the bad out of the way right now. The lyrics aren't all that special. She analogizes love with a battlefield and I bet most people can think of at least one other song that makes that comparison. Cough. That being said, I am partial to the line, "Better go and get your armor." I think that's a turn of phrase that doesn't make me immediately recall other pop songs. Perhaps from the 80s. From a former opera singer. Am I being obvious enough? Nevertheless, the Pat Benatar (I couldn't keep it in anymore!) rip-off loses a few points in my book.

The good? There are two things I really enjoy about this track. First of all, I've always enjoyed the way that Jordin's songs use unusual or atypical instrumentations. From the weird cries in Freeze to the odd beats in See My Side, Jordin isn't afraid to experiment with different sounds. Thankfully, she hasn't lost that creative spark (shameless name pun, sorry) with Battlefield. The opening drum march with the sonar beep are a bit unsettling at first, but later effectively blend into the track.

The other aspect I love is the song's crescendo. It builds and builds until there's an outstanding middle eight where she bellows, "WHY DOES LOVE ALWAYS FEEL LIKE A BATTLEFIELD" and the backing track drops out and we're left with these odd sliding sounds. The overall effect is extremely dramatic and well-executed by her producers.

Hopefully this song will continue to climb the charts. Unfortunately, it's stalled around #30 on the Hot 100 but I'm optimistic it can continue its march (battle pun?) to the top.

Sorry for all of the lame jokes in this one. It's late.

Rating: 3.5/5 stars

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