Mark Ralston/Getty Images
July 06, 2012 at 06:40 PM EDT

Nelly Furtado’s stance on hoop earrings is obviously the bigger, the better, but does the same hold true for her latest pop hook?

The answer is, well, yes. Furtado premiered her upcoming album’s title track, “Spirit Indestructible,” and the song has a chorus as epic and uplifting as you’d expect with a new-age title like that. The accompanying lyric video also features footage of a disabled mountain climber scaling Mount Kilimanjaro, in case your day was lacking inspiration.

The rest of the song, however, is a Frankenstein of musical styles. The opening keyboard recalls the intro to Lady Gaga’s “Marry the Night,” and the Timbaland-esque beat that kicks in later sounds like a rhythmic repeat of their 2006 hit “Promiscuous” — except it’s not Timbaland behind the boards, it’s actually producer Rodney “Darkchild” Jerkins. Now throw in a vowel-chanting breakdown, a cinematic war cry of a bridge, and some guitar for the heck of it? Woah, Nelly. That’s a lot of song you’ve got there.

Furtado turned heads when she swapped her folksy pop sound for sexier jams with 2006’s Loose, but she has always been a hip-hop fan — she joined Missy Elliott for a remix of “Get Ur Freak On” more than a decade ago. Still, Furtado’s new material is her best shot at uniting any fans torn between two Nellys. The Spirit Indestructible‘s first single “Big Hoops (Bigger the Better)” may have been about going to the club, but Furtado has said it was written from the perspective of her teenage self, who just wants to express herself (no sex, guys!) and rock backpacks and bell-bottoms (like these?) when she goes out.

Readers, what do you think of the new Nelly? Do you like the direction she’s going in, or do you wish she were still like a bird?


Carly Rae Jepsen, Katy Perry win big at Much Music Awards

10 Albums We Can’t Wait to Hear

Poll: What’s your favorite summer song of the past decade?

You May Like