Christine and the Queens makes her opening mark on 2020 with the synth-pop dream that is “People, I’ve been sad.”
The track is the singer’s first single since 2019’s genre-crossing collaboration with Charli XCX, “Gone”. Comparing both tracks, the former is certainly a more toned-down slow burn aiming to evoke introspective thoughts.
The track opens with an honest confession with the lines, “It’s true that people have been sad / It’s true that people have been gone / It’s true that people have been missing out / Missing out for way too long.” With these lyrics, Chris (Heloise Adelaide Letissier) returns to her roots with her call-and-response style of vocals and it hits hard – as if she is drilling the message into the listener’s head. This style continues in the chorus but works more as a rhythmic effect.
The singer takes it to the next level in the second verse as she sings in her native French language. Soft strings slowly creep in and aids the storytelling as she sings about her vulnerable choices, hanging onto every word, almost drawing out each syllable.
The singer continues singing in French during the bridge where her vocals are truly on display. There’s nowhere to hide but this is no problem as she sounds beautiful singing about tough lessons with strong metaphors.
Overall, “People, I’ve been sad” is a deeply personal track that showcases vulnerability in a delicate way. But by the end of the song, there’s a hint of optimism and strength for the listener. As this is the first track of 2020 for Christine and the Queens, it will be interesting to see what else the talented singer puts out for the rest of the year.