Lilian Min
September 10, 2015 2:19 pm

The past few years has given us a lot of unconventional female pop artists. Two of the best recent examples: Sia, the reclusive Australian genius whose songwriting career has birthed her own set of anthemic songs, and FKA twigs, the body-bending and voice-morphing provocateur. Naturally, it was only a matter of time before the two collided with each other; sadly, this first contact hasn’t come in the form of a collaboration. Instead, twigs popped by BBC Radio 1’s legendary Live Lounge to deliver an intensely beautiful rework of Sia’s “Elastic Heart.”

Most Live Lounge covers involve bands crossing genres and adding new harmonies and instrumentals, but twigs went a step further in her stripped down (but not at all sparse) cover. The original “Elastic Heart” stretches like bubblegum, all see-sawing vocals and backgrounds converging in a chorus that seems destined for the heavens. Its music video distilled the song’s push-and-pull dynamics into physical avatars (played by Maddie Ziegler and Shia LaBeouf); it’s a striking visual counterpoint for an epic song.

In twigs’ rendition, the stakes are just as high, even though the music itself doesn’t swell and break in the same traditional pop song structure. Instead, the singer pulls in the expanse of Sia’s vocal range and adds breathiness and dissonance (and a dancer — for radio!) for her own take on the tune.

Twigs’ last Live Lounge cover was Sam Smith’s “Stay With Me”; it seems she’s developed a taste for taking grandiose songs and translating them to fit her own slightly macabre, electronica-heavy style. Watch and listen to her performance below:

Related reading:

Jaw drop like woah: FKA twigs’ new EP ‘M3LL155X’ is out in music video form

Currently listening to: Hozier’s upbeat cover of Sam Smith’s “Lay Me Down”

Image via here.

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