Single Review: Natasha Bedingfield “These Words”

These Words
Album: Unwritten
Year: 2005

Natasha Bedingfield has difficulty writing a love song in the jumbled “These Words.”

Tumid drum machines, keyboards, and record scratching begin the single. Bedingfield adlibs “these words of mine, ah ah ah.” She says she’s a musician and it’s her identity. She decided to play with the chords D-E-F to create a song. It’s her responsibility to make the song, not anyone else’s. But she can’t concentrate. Her mind is drawing a blank on ideas and she could use some advice. (“Threw some chords together/The combination D-E-F/Is who I am, is what I do/No one’s gonna lay it down for you/Try to focus my attention/But I feel so A-D-D/I need some help, some inspiration/(But it’s not coming easily)/Whoah oh”)

In the pre-chorus, she aims to write something memorable which will be played on the radio long after she has faded into obscurity. Her trash can is filled with looseleaf paper with rejected song lyrics. (“Trying to find the magic/Trying to write a classic/Don’t you know, don’t you know, don’t you know?/Waste-bin full of paper/Clever rhymes, see you later.”)

In the chorus, she says her lyrics come from the heart. She decides to just say it: “I love you.” It’s the only way she knows how. (“These words are my own/From my heart flow/I love you, I love you, I love you, I love you/There’s no other way;/To better say/I love you, I love you.”)

To get some inspiration, she dug out some poetry books and read classic poems. She then opted to sample Lord Byron, Shelly, and Keats alongside a modern rap beat. However, it’s still not helping her. She can’t go the recording studio without having a song. However, her new romance has put pressure on her to write the perfect love song. (“Read some Byron, Shelly and Keats/Recited it over a hip-hop beat/I’m having trouble saying what I mean/With dead poets and drum machines/I know I had some studio time booked/But I couldn’t find a killer hook/Now you’ve gone & raised the bar right up/Nothing I write is ever good enough.”)

In the bridge, she says she’s not to going use an elaborate gestures and metaphors to describe her feelings. She’s only going to say what she feels. (“I’m getting off my stage/The curtains pull away/No hyperbole to hide behind/My naked soul exposes/Whoah.. oh.. oh.. oh.. Whoah.. oh..”)

The chorus ends the single. However, Bedingfield adds if it’s all right if she only says “I love you” and not anything else. (“I love you/I love you…I love you, is that okay?”)

The dishevelled “These Words” is more about writing a single than it’s actual topic. Important information is omitted (who is the song about? why is she singing to it him?) Meanwhile unnecessary details (being the recording studio, not being able to write an imaginative hook.) are kept in. “These Words” should’ve gone into the trash can like the other songs she tried to write.

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