Call the Shots

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
"Call the Shots"
Single by Girls Aloud
from the album Tangled Up
B-side
Released 26 November 2007
Format
Genre
Length 3:44
Label Fascination
Writer(s)
Producer(s) Xenomania
Girls Aloud singles chronology
"Sexy! No No No..."
(2007)
"Call the Shots"
(2007)
"Can't Speak French"
(2008)
Music video
"Call the Shots" on YouTube

"Call the Shots" is a song by British girl group Girls Aloud from their fourth studio album, Tangled Up (2007). The song was written by Miranda Cooper, with inspiration from an article about the advance of women in business, and Brian Higgins, Tim Powell, Lisa Cowling, and Giselle Somerville also received songwriting credits. Polydor Records originally intended to release it as a single for The Sound of Girls Aloud: The Greatest Hits (2006); however, "Something Kinda Ooooh" was selected instead. In September 2007, "Call the Shots" leaked online, and on 26 November of the same year, it was released as the second single from Tangled Up through Fascination Records, a week after the album's release.

Produced by Xenomania, the dance-pop and pop rock song showcases a more mature side from Girls Aloud, and received positive reviews from music critics, with one deeming it as the "greatest pop song of the 21st century". In 2008, the song won the award for the Popjustice £20 Music Prize, an annual prize awarded by a panel of judges organised by music website Popjustice to the singer(s) of the best British pop single of the past year. "Call the Shots" proved to be commercially successful upon its release, charting at number three on the UK Singles Chart, continuing the band's string of hits by becoming their sixteenth consecutive single to chart within the top ten, and being later certified Silver by the British Phonographic Industry. The song also peaked at number nine on the Irish Singles Chart.

The accompanying music video was directed by Sean de Sparengo, and features the girls in purple dresses performing on Malibu Beach at night with flames and white fabric surrounding them. Each member of the band is also shown other locations, following several story lines. "Call the Shots" was promoted through numerous live appearances, including a high-profile performance on The X Factor, and has since been performed on three of Girls Aloud's subsequent concert tours. Several artists and bands including Coldplay and Mark Morriss have covered the song.

Background and release[edit]

The first part of "Call the Shots" to be composed was the instrumentation, which was done by Xenomania in 2005.[1] The lyrics of the song were written in 2006,[1] when songwriter Miranda Cooper was "inspired by an article she read on something called (coincidentally) the Miranda Complex, named after the ambitious lawyer in Sex and the City, about how women are earning more than men and pushing ahead."[2] Polydor Records originally intended to release it as a single for The Sound of Girls Aloud: The Greatest Hits (2006) the same year, but was deemed "too downbeat, when a greatest hits single needs to be a celebration."[3] Nicola Roberts, Cheryl Cole, Sarah Harding and Kimberley Walsh recorded vocals for the song in London, England, while Nadine Coyle recorded her vocals in Los Angeles, California.[2] Cole deemed the song her favourite from Tangled Up, adding that it gave her "goosebumps".[4] An early version of "Call the Shots" leaked online in September 2007.[5] On 16 November 2007, Tangled Up was released, with "Call the Shots" being released for digital download on 26 November 2007, through Polydor Records,[6] while it was also made available on two different CD single formats the same day.[7] The first disc included a live cover version of Amy Winehouse's 2007 single "Rehab", as performed on the BBC Radio 1 programme Jo Whiley's Live Lounge.[7] The second CD format featured an original composition entitled "Blow Your Cover", co-written by Girls Aloud with Xenomania.[8] The Tony Lamenza Remix of "Call the Shots" was being included on the CD single also at first,[9] however, the Xenomania Club Mix was selected instead.[10] The Tony Lamenza Remix was then included on the Singles Box Set, released in 2009.[3]

Composition[edit]

A 22-second sample of the song, where Girls Aloud sing over a "classy electronic" instrumentation.[11] The lyrics are concerned with the ending of a relationship, with the band singing during the chorus, "Just 'cause you're raising the bet and call the shots now on me".[12][13]

Problems playing this file? See media help.

"Call the Shots" is a dance-pop and pop rock track written in the key of D major and with a moderate tempo of 126 beats per minute.[12] Unlike previous singles released by the band, the song follows the verse–chorus form.[14] The lyrics are concerned with the ending of a relationship, and opens with a repetitive melody followed by Coyle singing, "Static tone on the phone, I'll be breaking again / Must be something better babe".[12][13] As the chorus begins, the five members of the group trade lines and sing, "Just 'cause you're raising the bet and call the shots now on me / It really doesn't faze me how you spend your time",[15] with Alexis Petridis of The Guardian stating that "only anterograde amnesia could wipe [this part] from your brain".[14] During the middle-eight, Roberts sings lyrics that were the inspiration for Girls Aloud's autobiography Dreams that Glitter – Our Story, released in 2008: "I've seen life burn bright, seen it shimmer / Then fade like starlight to a glimmer, oh no / I've seen life flow by like a river / So full of twilight, dreams that glitter".[15][16] Alex Fletcher of Digital Spy said that the instrumentation of "Call the Shots" was based on 1990s dance productions, and added that it incorporated "oohs" and "ah ah ahs" that "reverberate around an infectious chorus,"[17] while John Lucas of Allmusic wrote that the song showcased a more mature side from Girls Aloud.[18]

Reception[edit]

Critical response[edit]

Girls Aloud performing "Call the Shots" on the Out of Control Tour (2009).

"Call the Shots" received positive reviews from music critics. Alex Fletcher of Digital Spy rated the song four out of five stars, writing that it is "more tasteful" than few of Girls Aloud's previous releases.[17] Daily Star journalist Kim Dawson said "Call the Shots" is one of the band's best singles,[19] while another reviewer for the same newspaper deemed the song "classy electronic Euro-pop with real edge."[11] Jennie McNulty of Marie Claire said that the song "has a wonderfully ambient feel, echoing an arty electro band",[20] while Alexis Petridis of The Guardian wrote that Tangled Up "begins disappointingly" with "Call the Shots" as the opening track because the song's structure is "a bit commonplace" compared to Girls Aloud's previous singles such as "Biology" (2005).[14] On the countdown of the top singles of 2007, Digital Spy placed "Call the Shots" at number 17, commenting that the band had not lost "their knack for making supremely catchy pop hits."[21] In 2008, the song won the Popjustice £20 Music Prize – Girls Aloud's fourth win.[22] Popjustice writer Peter Robinson deemed it as the "greatest pop song of the 21st century."[3]

Chart performance[edit]

Following the availability of "Call the Shots" due to the release of Tangled Up, the song entered the UK Singles Chart at number nine.[23] The following week, "Call the Shots" rose six places to peak at number three.[24][25] It managed to stay at number three the following week,[26] but slipped to number five in its fourth week.[27] Through the Christmas week chart, the single managed to stay in the top ten, returning to its debut position of number nine.[28] "Call the Shots" was certified Silver by the British Phonographic Industry.[29] On the chart issue of 22 November 2007, the song debuted at number 44 in Ireland, reaching a new peak at number 9 the following week.[30] It attained the same peak on the European Hot 100 Singles chart.[31]

Music video[edit]

The accompanying music video for "Call the Shots" was directed by Sean de Sparengo,[32] and filmed in October 2007 in Malibu, California, while Girls Aloud were filming The Passions of Girls Aloud.[33] The video features the girls in purple dresses performing on Malibu Beach at night with flames and white fabric surrounding them. The girls are also shown in different locations with individual story lines. Cole is simply seen looking out of a sunny window. Walsh is sat in front of a mirror, putting on make-up; her fictional boyfriend comes to get her and they hug, though she appears to be sad. Coyle is seated on a couch, flipping through photographs featuring her and a man. She takes a lighter to the photos and sets them alight. Roberts is lying down by a swimming pool, running her fingers through the water. A young man walks up to her with a bouquet of flowers and tosses them into the water. Harding watches her boyfriend in the shower and goes through his phone. The video premiered on 17 October 2007.[34]

Live performances and covers[edit]

Girls Aloud first performed "Call the Shots" at a charity ball in aid of children's charity UNICEF on 10 November 2007.[35] The band also performed the song on The X Factor on 17 November 2007,[36] on The Paul O'Grady Show on 21 November 2007,[37] on This Morning on 27 November 2007,[38] and on Top of the Pops on 25 December 2007.[39] "Call the Shots" was performed on 2008's Tangled Up Tour,[40] and, later that year, at The Girls Aloud Party TV special held by ITV1,[41] and at the V Festival.[42] For 2009's Out of Control Tour, the band began the performance on a smaller, specially-constructed stage in the centre of the arena, and flew back to the main stage before it ended.[43] The same year, Bloc Party covered the song for BBC Radio 1's Live Lounge.[44] In 2013, the song was performed during the second act of the Ten: The Hits Tour.[45] "Call the Shots" was also covered by several artists and bands such as Coldplay,[46] David Jordan,[47] Fyfe Dangerfield,[48] Malcolm Middleton,[49] and Mark Morriss.[50]

Formats and track listings[edit]

These are the formats and track listings of major single releases of "Call the Shots".

Credits and personnel[edit]

Credits adapted from the liner notes of Tangled Up.[15]

Charts and certifications[edit]

Release history[edit]

Country Date Format Label
Ireland 26 November 2007 Digital download[52] Polydor Records
United Kingdom CD single,[8] digital download[6]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b McCormick, Neil (13 August 2008). "Xenomania: How to write a hit song". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 16 January 2013. 
  2. ^ a b McLean, Craig (11 November 2007). "Smashed hits". The Guardian. Retrieved 16 January 2013. 
  3. ^ a b c d Robinson, Peter (2009). "Call the Shots". The Singles Boxset (Booklet). Girls Aloud. London, England: Fascination Records. pp. 38–39. 
  4. ^ Dawson, Kim (8 September 2007). "Cheryl's flop fear". Daily Star (Northern & Shell). Retrieved 8 September 2007. 
  5. ^ Robinson, Peter (10 October 2007). "Girls’ ‘Call…’ – high class". Popjustice. Retrieved 16 January 2013. 
  6. ^ a b c "Call the Shots (with Video) – EP by Girls Aloud". United Kingdom: iTunes Store. Apple, Inc. 26 November 2007. Retrieved 16 January 2013. 
  7. ^ a b c "Call the Shots Pt. 2: Girls Aloud: Music". Amazon.com. 27 November 2007. Retrieved 16 January 2013. 
  8. ^ a b c "Call the Shots: Amazon.co.uk: Music". Amazon.com. 26 November 2007. Retrieved 16 January 2013. 
  9. ^ Robinson, Peter (12 October 2007). "Girls Aloud – 'Call The Shots' (Lamezma mix)". Popjustice. Retrieved 16 January 2013. 
  10. ^ "Girls Aloud – Call the Shots (CD)". Discogs. Zink Media Inc. 26 November 2007. Retrieved 16 November 2013. 
  11. ^ a b "Girls Aloud Track By Track". Daily Star (Northern & Shell). 7 November 2007. Retrieved 21 March 2013. 
  12. ^ a b c "Girls Aloud – Call the Shots Sheet Music (Digital Download)". Music Notes. Xenomania Songs Ltd. Retrieved 27 January 2013. 
  13. ^ a b Murphy, John (26 November 2007). "Girls Aloud – Call The Shots (Polydor)". musicOMH. Retrieved 27 January 2013. 
  14. ^ a b c Petridis, Alexis (9 November 2007). "Girls Aloud, Tangled Up". The Guardian. Retrieved 27 January 2013. 
  15. ^ a b c "Call the Shots". Tangled Up (Fan Edition) (Booklet). Girls Aloud. London, England: Fascination Records. 2007. p. 1. 
  16. ^ Girls Aloud (14 December 2009). Dreams That Glitter: Our Story (1 ed.). United Kingdom: Transworld. p. 256. ISBN 9780552157605. Retrieved 15 December 2012. 
  17. ^ a b Fletcher, Alex (26 November 2007). "Girls Aloud: 'Call The Shots'". Digital Spy. Retrieved 27 January 2013. 
  18. ^ Lucas, John. "Tangled Up". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved 1 February 2009. 
  19. ^ Dawson, Kim (19 October 2007). "Girls Aloud: Sketch, London". Daily Star (Northern & Shell). Retrieved 21 March 2013. 
  20. ^ McNulty, Jennie (19 November 2007). "Tangled Up by Girls Aloud". Marie Claire. Retrieved 21 March 2013. 
  21. ^ Levine, Nick; Fletcher, Alex (31 December 2007). "Digital Spy's Top 20 Singles of 2007". Digital Spy. Retrieved 21 March 2013. 
  22. ^ Savage, Mark (10 September 2008). "Girls Aloud win £20 single prize". BBC News. BBC. Retrieved 21 March 2013. 
  23. ^ West, Dave (25 November 2007). "Leona tops singles chart for fifth week". Digital Spy. Retrieved 15 August 2010. 
  24. ^ "Leona remains top of both charts". BBC News. BBC. 2 December 2007. Retrieved 15 August 2010. 
  25. ^ McAlpine, Fraser (2 December 2007). "Chart Report – 02/12/07". BBC. Retrieved 15 August 2010. 
  26. ^ "Festive hits fly back into chart". BBC News. BBC. 9 December 2007. Retrieved 15 August 2010. 
  27. ^ "Melua duet ends Leona's chart run". BBC News. BBC. 16 December 2007. Retrieved 15 August 2010. 
  28. ^ Wilkes, Neil (23 December 2007). "Leon clinches Christmas number one spot". Digital Spy. Retrieved 15 August 2010. 
  29. ^ a b "BPI - Certified Awards Search". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved 16 January 2010. 
  30. ^ a b "Chart Track". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved 31 August 2010.
  31. ^ a b "Girls Aloud Album & Song Chart History" European Hot 100 for Girls Aloud. Retrieved 31 August 2010.
  32. ^ "Girls Aloud – Call the Shots". Capital FM. Retrieved 23 March 2013. 
  33. ^ "Cheryl Cole sends a very cheeky message from LA". Daily Mail (Associated Newspapers). 3 October 2007. Archived from the original on 3 October 2007. Retrieved 21 March 2013. 
  34. ^ "Video: Girls Aloud – Call The Shots". Popjustice. 17 October 2007. Retrieved 21 March 2013. 
  35. ^ "Girls Aloud headline charity ball". Building. United Business Media. 14 November 2007. Retrieved 27 January 2013. 
  36. ^ "[20x62]". This Morning. Series 4. Episode 19. 17 November 2007. 60 minutes in. ITV1. ITV.
  37. ^ "Girls Aloud – Call The Shots (Live at Paul O'Grady Show)". Girls Aloud's official website. Polydor Ltd. 21 November 2007. Retrieved 7 February 2013. 
  38. ^ "[Live Show – Week 5]". The X Factor. Season 20. Episode 17. 27 November 2007. 60 minutes in. ITV1. ITV.
  39. ^ "Top of the Pops (UK) – Season 43 – Episode 37 – Christmas Special 2007". TV.com. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 7 February 2013. 
  40. ^ Levine, Nick (20 May 2008). "Girls Aloud: The good, the bad and the bawdy". Digital Spy. Hearst Corporation. Retrieved 2 December 2012. 
  41. ^ "From grannies to glamour girls, Girls Aloud dazzle viewers in festive special". Daily Mail (Associated Newspapers). 14 December 2008. Retrieved 15 December 2012. 
  42. ^ "Girls Aloud cover Robyn at V Festival". NME. 16 August 2008. Retrieved 15 December 2012. 
  43. ^ Rosney, Daniel. "An indepth feature review on the opening of the Girls Aloud tour of 2008". DanielRosney.com. Retrieved 2 December 2012. 
  44. ^ "Bloc Party at Live Lounge". Live Lounge. BBC. 30 January 2009. Retrieved 7 February 2013. 
  45. ^ Corner, Lewis (22 February 2013). "Girls Aloud begin 'Ten' UK tour in Newcastle – pictures". Digital Spy. Retrieved 22 February 2013. 
  46. ^ Thompson, Jody (17 June 2008). "Pictures: Coldplay triumph at Brixton Academy live gig return". Daily Mirror. Retrieved 7 February 2013. 
  47. ^ "David Jordan 'rocked the house' at the ICA last night". Popjustice. 3 April 2008. Retrieved 7 February 2013. 
  48. ^ "Songs from Fly Yellow Moon, and an interesting take on Girls Aloud". Q. Bauer Media Group. 9 March 2010. Retrieved 7 February 2013. 
  49. ^ "Malcolm Middleton – Girl Songs E.P.". Discogs. Zink Media Inc. 25 November 2009. Retrieved 7 February 2013. 
  50. ^ "I'm Sick by Mark Morriss". iTunes Store. Apple Inc. 1 December 2008. Retrieved 7 February 2013. 
  51. ^ "December 2007/ Archive Chart" UK Singles Chart. Retrieved 31 August 2010.
  52. ^ "Call the Shots (with Video) – EP by Girls Aloud". Ireland: iTunes Store. Apple, Inc. 26 November 2007. Retrieved 16 January 2013. 

External links[edit]