Sunday, December 18, 2011

The Top 100 Songs of 2011 -- #65: "Lights" -- Ellie Goulding

After landing a number of singles on the UK Singles Chart, British songstress Ellie Goulding broke into the United States with a performance on Saturday Night Live in May. After singing a cover of Elton John classic "Your Song," Goulding appeared with "Lights," a disco-like pop tune that has proved to be her biggest (and, well, only) hit in America.

"Lights" presents Goulding as a sort-of Robyn figure, a dance pop damsel with a flair for the electronic. The song is synthpop at its finest, with Goulding as the vulnerable female lead whose saccharine vocals preside over electronic blips and a pulsing beat.

The song's airy production keeps it from becoming too dense, as many dance tracks often do. Goulding is not an artist suited for pulsating club tracks, so this befits her. The instrumentation is sparse, slightly growing in volume by its end but never losing sight of the main attraction -- Goulding herself.

2011 marked a year during which many a pop diva threw her hat into the dance-y electronic ring. With "Lights," Goulding shows them how it's done. Few could top this in the genre.

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