Charli performing at Positivus Festival 2013
|Birth name||Charlotte Emma Aitchison|
2 August 1992 |
Stevenage, Hertfordshire, England
|Genres||Synthpop, indietronica, darkwave, witch house|
|Labels||Orgy Music, This Is Music, Asylum, Atlantic, IAMSOUND|
|Associated acts||Iggy Azalea|
Charlotte Emma Aitchison (born 2 August 1992), better known by her stage name Charli XCX, is an English singer and songwriter. She released two singles in 2008, "!Franchesckaar!" (from her commercially unreleased debut album, 14) and "Emelline"/"Art Bitch". She was signed to This Is Music and IAMSOUND Records in 2010 before releasing three more singles, "Stay Away", "Nuclear Seasons" and "You're the One" from her debut EP You're the One, which was released in June 2012. After a year-long delay period, she released her debut major label studio album, True Romance, in April 2013. Currently, she is expecting to release her third studio album in June 2014.
2008–10: 14 and career beginnings
At the age of 14 in 2007, XCX began recording her debut album on a loan granted by her parents. In early 2008, she began posting songs from the album, as well as numerous other demos, on her official MySpace. This caught the attention of a man called Chaz, who was running numerous illegal warehouse raves in London, which became her first true gigs. Two singles, "!Franchesckaar!" and double A-side "Emelline"/"Art Bitch", were released in late 2008 under Orgy Music. XCX's debut studio album, 14, featuring the former single, was never commercially released, although several promotional copies were issued and copies were given away at XCX's earliest gigs. After being signed to Asylum Records in 2010, XCX took a break from music in what she describes as a "lost" period.
2011–13: You're the One and True Romance
In 2011, XCX featured on two singles, "End of the World" by Alex Metric, and "Lost in Space" by Starkey. In May 2011, she released her first single in nearly three years, "Stay Away", followed by "Nuclear Seasons" in November, both produced by Ariel Rechtshaid and released exclusively in the UK. These singles gained attention from Pitchfork Media, where she gained Best New Track accolades for both tracks, with the former being ranked #35 on their Best Tracks of 2011 list. In late 2011, a five-track promotional sampler of Aitchison's debut album surfaced. All tracks were early demos, including an early version of "You're the One", titled "In the Dark".
In February 2012, XCX released two free tracks through her website, the holiday-themed "Valentine" and "I'll Never Know". She wrote and provided two tracks including "How Can I?" for the indie horror film Elfie Hopkins. She also released two free mixtapes via SoundCloud, containing tracks by her female and male influences, the first titled Super Girls, SuperLove and the second titled I Like Boys Who Cry. On 12 May 2012, she released her first original mixtape, titled Heartbreaks and Earthquakes, a one-track file consisting of eight songs, including "How Can I?". She supported Santigold and Coldplay on tour throughout summer.
On 12 June 2012, XCX released her debut EP You're the One in the United States, featuring "You're the One" and "Nuclear Seasons", as well as remixes of both tracks. On 14 June, "You're the One" was released as her debut single in Australia. The EP was later released in September in the UK and Australia, the UK version featuring the title track and "So Far Away", as well as three remixes. The Australian version contained the title track, "Stay Away", and "Nuclear Seasons". The Australian edition was also the only version of the EP to be released physically on CD. Her second original mixtape, Super Ultra was released exclusively through her website on 7 November 2012, featuring 8 separate tracks.
XCX wrote Icona Pop's song "I Love It", which became a breakthrough hit for the Swedish duo, peaking within the top ten of the charts in numerous countries, including the United States, and serving as the theme song for Snooki & JWoww. She is credited as a featured artist on the song, even though she did not actually perform it or appear in the music video. XCX's second studio album and debut major label studio album, True Romance, was released on 12 April 2013 and peaked at #85 on the UK Albums Chart. The album failed to appear on any international main albums charts, but it did reach #5 on the US Billboard Top Heatseekers, and #11 on the Australian Hitseekers Albums Chart, reaching the equivalent peak of #206 and #111 respectively. The album was well received by music critics, with an average score of 76/100 on Metacritic, which assigns a rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, indicating "generally favourable reviews".
XCX toured with Ellie Goulding as an opening act on a Europe tour of Germany, Poland, Italy, Switzerland, and Dublin throughout April 2013, and then toured America and Canada with Marina and the Diamonds throughout May 2013, followed by her own untitled UK tour in support of True Romance. In March 2013, XCX was named one of Fuse TV's 30 must-see artists at SXSW. On 1 May 2013, Marina and XCX published a duet titled "Just Desserts" on their Youtube pages. The song was posted as a free download on both of their Soundcloud pages.
2013–14: Third studio album
In June 2013, XCX confirmed she was working on her second (technically third) album. Also in June, "Illusions Of", a track by J£ZUS MILLION featuring XCX, was released as a single from Double Denim Vol. 1, a compilation of artists signed to Double Denim Records. In September 2013, XCX supported American rock band Paramore on the UK leg of their self-titled tour, spanning two dates at Wembley Arena. On 26 September 2013, she released the music video for the lead single from her third studio album, "SuperLove", which was later released commercially on 8 December 2013. On 16 January 2014, XCX released a cover of a Snuffed by the Yakuza song titled "Allergic To Love" via her Soundcloud. On 4 March 2014, a music video was released for the song "Fancy", which Charli and Iggy Azalea worked on together. The music video was heavily inspired by the film Clueless, with Azalea portraying Cher Horowitz (originally played by Alicia Silverstone) and XCX portraying Tai Frasier (originally played by Brittany Murphy). Charli has recently been performing new songs including 'Breaking Up' and 'London Queen'
XCX's music has been compared to the music of the 1980s with "the spookiness of Siouxsie Sioux" or "flawless early-Madonna". Her influences include Spice Girls, Kate Bush, Uffie, Brooke Candy, Lil Wayne, and Quentin Tarantino. For her third solo album project, she listed The Hives, Weezer, and Ramones as influences. Various sources have listed her as goth pop or dark pop.
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