Quicksand (La Roux song)

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La Roux - Quicksand original.jpg
EP cover
Single by La Roux
from the album La Roux
Released 15 December 2008 (2008-12-15)
Recorded 2008; Elfin Studios
(Teddington, London, England)
Genre Synthpop
Length 3:05
Label Polydor
  • Elly Jackson
  • Ben Langmaid
La Roux singles chronology
"In for the Kill"
Alternative cover
Re-release cover

"Quicksand" is a song by English synthpop duo La Roux from their self-titled debut album, La Roux. Written and produced by Elly Jackson and Ben Langmaid, the song was released as the album's lead single on 15 December 2008 by Kitsuné Music.[1] It peaked at number 153 on the UK Singles Chart upon limited release.[2] When re-released on 23 November 2009, the single re-entered the chart at number 129.

Song information[edit]

Jackson told The London Paper that the song is about "having an intense moment with someone, when maybe you're watching a film or listening to music, and both of you are yearning for the other one, and it's almost painful to sit next to them."[3]

Critical reception[edit]

"Quicksand" was met with critical acclaim. Digital Spy music editor Nick Levine wrote that "[l]ike most of the songs on their debut album, it's a winning combination of pop smarts, stifling romantic obsession and production that mixes the sounds of '82 with the sonic punch of '09."[4] Alexis Petridis of The Guardian commented that "the sparse dynamics and stabbing synthesisers of 'Quicksand' offer a reminder that not every aspect of the 80s has been mined to exhaustion in recent years."[5] Peter Paphides of The Times called the song "superb" and added, "Propelled along by a melody that shares some of its DNA with Prince's 'When Doves Cry', Jackson casts herself as the recipient of an overture from someone already in a relationship."[6] John Murphy, writing for musicOMH, described the song as "instantly addictive and catchy", while stating that "unlike a lot of electro acts out there, 'Quicksand' has real heart and emotion to it as well—certainly not a case of style over substance."[1] Allmusic's Heather Phares noted that the track "uses a relentlessly tight arrangement and Jackson's frosty soulfulness to give the song's obsession a shot of excitement."[7] Luke Turner from the NME referred to "Quicksand" as "liquid-mercury-smooth but pierced by sharp vocals."[8]

Music video[edit]

The music video of "Quicksand" was directed by Kinga Burza.[9] It was released on YouTube on 13 January 2009. The video shows Jackson on a tropical island with pineapples and the sun setting. Girls are dancing. Jackson is seen with a parrot on her shoulder, singing. It mostly features Jackson singing with the sun setting behind her.

Track listings[edit]

Original release[edit]



Chart (2009) Peak
Belgian Tip Chart (Flanders)[19] 19
UK Singles Chart[20] 129

Release history[edit]

Country Date Label Format
Original release
France 15 December 2008 Kitsuné Music 12" single,[10] digital EP[11]
United States 14 April 2009 Cherrytree Records, Interscope Records EP,[13] digital EP[14]
9 June 2009 12" single[21]
United Kingdom 2 July 2009 Polydor Records Digital single[12]
United Kingdom 22 November 2009 Polydor Records Digital EP[18]
23 November 2009 CD single,[22] 7" single[17]


  1. ^ a b Murphy, John. "La Roux – Quicksand (Kitsune)". musicOMH. Retrieved 9 April 2009. 
  2. ^ Balls, David (10 September 2009). "La Roux 'won't re-release Quicksand single'". Digital Spy. Retrieved 10 September 2009. 
  3. ^ "Quicksand by La Roux". Songfacts. Retrieved 16 November 2009. 
  4. ^ Levine, Nick (23 November 2009). "La Roux: 'Quicksand'". Digital Spy. Retrieved 17 May 2010. 
  5. ^ Petrides, Alexis (26 June 2009). "La Roux: La Roux". The Guardian. guardian.co.uk. Retrieved 17 May 2010. 
  6. ^ Paphides, Peter (25 June 2009). "La Roux: La Roux". The Times. Times Newspapers Ltd. Retrieved 17 May 2010. 
  7. ^ Phares, Heather. "La Roux – La Roux – Review". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved 17 May 2010. 
  8. ^ Turner, Luke (23 June 2009). "Album Review: La Roux – 'La Roux'". NME. IPC Media. Retrieved 17 May 2010. 
  9. ^ Knight, David (3 December 2008). "La Roux's Quicksand by Kinga Burza". Promo News. Retrieved 8 May 2009. 
  10. ^ a b "Quicksand : La Roux" (in French). Fnac. Retrieved 2 August 2011. 
  11. ^ a b "Kitsuné: Quicksand – EP de La Roux" (in French). iTunes Store France. Apple Inc. Retrieved 7 February 2010. 
  12. ^ a b "Quicksand (Standard Version) – Single by La Roux". iTunes Store UK. Apple Inc. Retrieved 7 February 2010. 
  13. ^ a b "La Roux : Releases : Quicksand EP". Interscope Records. Retrieved 8 February 2010. 
  14. ^ a b "Quicksand – EP by La Roux". iTunes Store US. Apple Inc. Retrieved 7 February 2010. 
  15. ^ "La Roux – Quicksand (12", Single)". Discogs. Retrieved 2 August 2011. 
  16. ^ "La Roux – Quicksand (CD, Single)". Discogs. Retrieved 2 August 2011. 
  17. ^ a b "La Roux – Quicksand (7", Ltd, S/Sided, Etch)". Discogs. Retrieved 8 February 2010. 
  18. ^ a b "Quicksand – EP by La Roux". iTunes Store UK. Apple Inc. Retrieved 7 February 2010. 
  19. ^ "La Roux – Quicksand" (in Dutch). Ultratop. Hung Medien. Retrieved 12 January 2010. 
  20. ^ "Chart Log UK – Chart Coverage and Record Sales 2009". The Official Charts Company. The Zobbel Website. Retrieved 11 March 2010. 
  21. ^ "Quicksand/In for the Kill [Vinyl]: La Roux". Amazon.com. Retrieved 8 February 2010. 
  22. ^ "Quicksand: La Roux". Amazon.co.uk. Retrieved 13 February 2010. 

External links[edit]