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Music Review

Cher Lloyd: 'Sticks + Stones' - Album review

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Cher: 'Sticks and Stones'
We're often confused by today's charts, but Cher Lloyd's 'Swagger Jagger' topping the singles tally last month was one of the more puzzling events in recent memory. Yes, it has almost 16 million YouTube hits, but when your debut asks people to "get up out my face" and gathers more 'dislikes' than 'likes' (144,679 to be precise), we were almost tempted to slap her with a one-hit wonder tag.

Fortunately, it's about as defensive, bratty and Black Eyed Peas-y as Sticks + Stones gets. Follow-up 'With Ur Love' is a jolly R&B number with more bounce than the midsection of a TOWIE 'actress', while songwriting contributors/hit factories RedOne, Max Martin and Shellback ensure the remainder is both child and chart-friendly.

That's not to say she lacks presence. Her frustrated grunts on 'Want You Back' - about a former beau who's moved on a bit too quick - could probably be heard five houses over, her sing-speak rework of Neneh Cherry's 'Buffalo Stance' (renamed 'Playa Boi') is a playful spin on the 1988 original, and 'Dub in the Track' is loaded with the kind of 'tude that few could pull off without inducing the odd smirk.

The rapping seen during her first X Factor audition is seldom heard, with the exception of Busta Ryhmes-assisted 'Grow Up' - though her flow is unlikely to ruffle the feathers of her peacocked contemporaries. The result is a bold effort which also serves as a reminder that behind her steely front she's still just a kid - and as the LP's only ballad 'Beautiful People' demonstrates, an oddly endearing one at that.



Tracks to download: 'With Ur Love', 'Grow Up', 'Want U Back', 'Playa Boi'
If you like this, you'll like: N-Dubz, Nicki Minaj, Cheryl Cole

Watch the 'With Ur Love' music video below:

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