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"Birds of Prey" is a song by American recording artist Christina Aguilera for the deluxe edition of her sixth studio album Bionic (2010). The song was written by Aguilera, Cathy Dennis, Helen Marnie, Daniel Hunt, Mira Aroyo, Reuben Wu, while production was handled by Ladytron.

The song finds Aguilera singing about "falling through the looking glass", and it's a synthpop and electronic music. It received acclaim from music critics, who agreed that it was much better than the other tracks on Bionic's regular edition, naming it an "epic" and "gorgeous" song. Herald Sun cited "Birds of Prey" as one of the most underrated song that wasn't released as a single.

Background

In November, 2009, it was rumoured that Christina had enlisted Ladytron to write songs for her then-upcoming fourth album.[1] She told the British electropop group exactly what she was looking for. "She just told us she wanted to enter our world," Ladytron multi-instrumentalist Reuben Wu told Spinner. "She didn't want to give us any idea what she wanted the music to be. She wanted us to do our own thing."[1]

Wu said Aguilera approached the group in 2007 and that she wasn't shy about declaring herself a fan. "She said she was inspired by our music and we were one of her favorite bands," he says.[1] Although Wu and his cohorts -- fellow keyboardist Daniel Hunt and vocalists Helen Marnie and Mira Aroyo -- were initially required to remain hush-hush about the project, they couldn't keep their secret from everyone. "What do we do but tell our parents?" Wu says. "Christina is one of those people where you know your parents would have heard of her, so it's kind of good for us to tell our moms and dads, 'Look, mom, look, dad -- we're actually doing something you can understand.'"[1]

"My feeling is that she got to a point in her life where she wanted to take her music to a different level. She was willing to take a risk and go in a completely different direction. It wasn't like, 'Oh, I want to be all electro.' It wasn't anything like that. She just wanted to evolve her music according to what she was listening to at the time."

—Wu about working with Aguilera.[1]

In an interview for Sirius XM Radio, Aguilera revealed that she was working with different artists, such as Ladytron.[2] Aguilera commented: "I think I'm most proud of this work than I've ever been, just because I worked with so many amazing and incredibly talented people. I got a chance to sort of write with Santigold, M.I.A., Ladytron — artists that I really love."[3]

Aguilera also commented about Bionic's sonic adventures:

"Working on this album with so many talented artists and producers that I admire was really an amazing experience," said Aguilera of her collaborators. The artists I chose to work with added so many unique song layers to Bionic. My intention was to step into their world and what they do combined with my own vision and sound. The results were magic."[4]

Composition and lyrics

File:Ladytron in Mexico in 2011.jpg

"Birds of Prey" was written by Aguilera, Cathy Dennis, Helen Marnie, Daniel Hunt, Mira Aroyo and Reuben Wu, while production was handled by Ladytron.[5] It is a synthpop song[6] It finds Aguilera singing about "falling through the looking glass" and taking the "blue or the red pill" over a haunting, pulsing, electronic backdrop similar to Ladytron’s work on their album Velocifero, according to "EQ Music".[7]

Critical reception

Stephen Thomas Erlewine of Allmusic called it a "cool synth glide."[6] Bill Lamb of About.com picked the song as one of the "Top Tracks" on Bionic, writing that "it manages to sound epic and ethereal at the same time."[8] Nick Levine of Digital Spy also praised the track, calling it a "brooding synth-pop par excellence."[9] Dan Martin of NME called it a "classic mournful electro from Ladytron."[10] Michael Cragg of musicOMH simply described it as "gorgeous".[11] Pip Ellwood of "Entertainment Focus" praised the song, naming it a "Pet Shop Boys-esque" track.[12] Javi of EQ Music also enjoyed the track, writing that "It’s a shame Ladytron’s tracks weren’t given a more prominent place on the album. Both songs are co-written by Xtina, Ladytron, and pop guru Cathy Dennis and 'Birds' shows us an ethereal Christina in wonderland.[7] X. Alexander of Idolator noted that the song is "actually better than the ones that made the cut on the standard album."[13]

Herald Sun listed "Birds of Prey" as one of the best and most underrated song that wasn't released as a single, and added:

"The Ladytron track 'Birds of Prey' is a genuine shock as it sounds absolutely nothing like Ms. Aguilera and entirely, utterly like a song that could have come from a Ladytron album. The biggest reason the song stands out is it is completely devoid of any of the excess trappings Aguilera is known for. No vocal acrobatics, no trite sound trappings that instantly identify one of her songs. She actually ends up sounding downright lovely, shame it was just a bonus track and the world will not hear this great song of 2010".[14]

Credits and personnel

Recording locations
  • Recording: The Redlips Room, Beverly Hills, California.
Personnel

Credits adapted from the liner notes of Bionic, RCA Records.[15]

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Partridge, Kenneth (November 9, 2009). "Ladytron Pen Songs for Christina Aguilera's Next Album". Spinner. http://www.spinner.com/2009/11/07/ladytron-pen-songs-for-christina-aguileras-next-album/. Retrieved December 21, 2012. 
  2. "Christina Aguilera: Collaborating with M.I.A., Sia, Santigold and more on SIRIUS XM". Sirius XM Radio. June 17, 2010. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ns-6lF_F1f0&feature=relmfu. Retrieved July 21, 2012. 
  3. Vena, Jocelyn (August 14, 2009). "Christina Aguilera Experiments With M.I.A., Santigold On Next Album". MTV News. http://www.mtv.com/news/articles/1618798/christina-aguilera-experiments-on-next-album.jhtml. Retrieved July 21, 2012. 
  4. "Christina Aguilera debuts track from Le Tigre/Ladytron featuring album". NME. March 25, 2010. http://www.nme.com/news/christina-aguilera/50374. Retrieved July 21, 2012. 
  5. Levine, Nick (May 16, 2010). "Aguilera reveals 'Bionic' production credits". Digital Spy. http://www.digitalspy.com/music/news/a221899/aguilera-reveals-bionic-production-credits.html. Retrieved July 21, 2012. 
  6. 6.0 6.1 Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. ((( Bionic > Overview ))). Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved on May 14, 2012.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Javi (June 8, 2010). "EQ Album Review - "Bionic" by Christina Aguilera". EQ Music. http://zxlcreative.blogs.com/electroqueer/2010/06/eq-album-review-bionic-by-christina-aguilera.html. Retrieved August 4, 2012. 
  8. Lamb, Bill. Christina Aguilera - Bionic. About.com. New York Times Company. Retrieved on May 18, 2012.
  9. Levine, Nick (June 14, 2010). "Christina Aguilera: 'Bionic' - Music Album Review - Digital Spy". Digital Spy. http://www.digitalspy.com/music/albumreviews/a225827/christina-aguilera-bionic.html. Retrieved July 21, 2012. 
  10. Christina Aguilera – Album review: Bionic (RCA). New Musical Express. Time Inc. (June 7, 2010). Retrieved on July 21, 2012.
  11. Cragg, Michael (June 7, 2010). "Christina Aguilera - Bionic | album reviews | musicOMH". musicOMH. http://www.musicomh.com/albums/christina-aguilera-2_0610.htm. Retrieved May 15, 2012. 
  12. Ellwood, Pip (June 14, 2010). "Christina Aguilera - Bionic: Deluxe Edition". Entertainment Focus. http://www.entertainment-focus.com/music/articles/christina-aguilera-bionic-deluxe-edition. Retrieved July 21, 2012. 
  13. Alexander, X. (September 22, 2012). "Christina Aguilera Defends ‘Bionic,’ Calls It “Ahead Of Its Time”". Idolator. http://idolator.com/6928362/christina-aguilera-defends-bionic. Retrieved December 18, 2012. 
  14. "Birds of Prey | Herald Sun". Herald Sun. http://softsynth.wordpress.com/2010/07/09/revisiting-the-xtina-files/. Retrieved December 23, 2012. 
  15. (liner notes). "Bionic". Christina Aguilera. RCA Records.. 2010. 


Christina Aguilera singles
Christina Aguilera
Mi Reflejo
My Kind of Christmas
Stripped
Back to Basics
Keeps Gettin' Better: A Decade of Hits
Bionic
Lotus
Soundtrack singles
Promotional singles


This article uses material from the Wikipedia article Birds of Prey (song), that was deleted or is being discussed for deletion, which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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This article uses material from the Wikipedia article Birds of Prey (song), that was deleted or is being discussed for deletion, which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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