Florence + The Machine, 'Shake It Out'

Poptastic new track from forthcoming second album

Florence’s thought police are allowing us to call ‘Shake It Out’ a single. We had to call the first single from ‘Ceremonials’, the lugubrious ‘What The Water Gave Me’, a ‘teaser’ track, despite it being available to buy and having a video. Yet, listening to this just once, it makes sense, leaving you in no doubt that this is what a single, in the truest sense of the word, is supposed to sound like, exploding into an invincible rush of a chorus that somehow manages to channel Enya while still sounding magnificent.

Vocally, this is her finest hour to date, really, properly singing where plenty of ‘Lungs’ simply saw her shout. However, as one might expect, the order of the day is still pagan poetry, singing spookily and enigmatically about cutting out her graceless heart and how “it’s always darkest before the dawn”. Or at least, that’s how it seems – so it rather kills the mood when you find out that it’s about having a hangover and wanting to quite literally shake it out by running around a bit. If there’s one thing you don’t want to do to an addled bonce, it’s shake it. You should know that by now, Florence. It might not be a crowded market, but Flo once again proves that as a doyenne of early 20th-century chamber pop, she remains unsurpassable.

Dan Martin

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