After over a year of delays, setbacks and public squabbles with Avicii, Leona Lewis finally released her third studio album, Glassheart, this week. Rejoice!
I’m not sure if I’ll get around to doing a proper review of the record since I have no time because I just moved and I’m like, living out of boxes and eating off of the floor or whatever (EXCUSES), but there’s one song in particular that I simply adore too much to ignore (aside from “Glassheart,” which remains a game-changer): “Shake You Up.”
The track was produced by Rodney “Darkchild Jerkins (who just happened to be sitting in a recording studio with Britney on X Factor recently, totally casual) and co-penned by “Now I’m That Bitch” Bajan chanteuse Livvi Franc, who also wrote “Trouble For Me” for The Holy Spearit, “The War Is Over” for Kelly Clarkson, and the still off-the-charts amazing “Walking On Snow” for Jordin Sparks. In other words, Livvi Franc is the Diane Warren of our time.
Set atop a bouncy ’80’s-encrusted synth pulse, “Shake You Up” evokes shades of Thriller-era Michael Jackson (think “Billie Jean”) as Leona flips the switch on an ex-flame that’s gotten the best of our girl one too many times. But this time around, she’s got the upper hand: “But now you’re standing just an inch from my face/And your drop of crazy is all I can taste/But what you don’t know is I came out of the dark/I know exactly how to shake you, to shake you up,” Lewis taunts on the irresistibly catchy chorus.
The song plays like Gwen Stefani‘s similarky ’80’s-infused “Crash” from her first solo effort, as well as Nelly Furtado‘s springy Loose throwback track, “Do It”–especially with that call-out at the beginning. But instead of Furtado’s bossy yelp of “Someone needs to rap off the top!”, Miss Leona is serving us all a killer dose of polite pop star realness: “Can you turn the music up a lil’ bit, please?” she inquires.
There are a few billion teeny things I love about this song: The 8-bit twinkles of electronica throughout, the xylophone beat that reminds me of ATC‘s “Around the World (La La La La La),” her falsetto bits right before the chorus, the line “Flashback/Broken bottles in a trash bag”, the final yelps of the middle eight (“Me-e-e, ooh-oh-oh!”). ALL SO GOOD.
And there you have it: A MuuMuse Approved jam.