She Can't Be Stopped

Well, well, well. I thought Shakira had left all the surprises for her last hit featuring Rihanna. That sensual number still was in line with Shakira's feline femininity, but this new single unwraps a new side to her newer fans may not have known exists.
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What if Drake came out with a country single?

Or, what if Taylor Swift came out with a rap hit?

Not only would you be skeptical, but you would likely laugh until your abs were ready for summer.

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Such is my reasoning for Shakira's latest single "Empire" and the subsequent confusion. Shakira is her hips and her froggy-chic voice. She's been a "She Wolf" longer than I think the word has even existed.

Shakira has a fandom, and she's got the numbers to prove it >>

So whether she's being a sweetheart or a vixen (which the latter still took me by surprise in her last music video), she's always sweating sexiness and wiping it up with her unparalleled vocal charm.

I really wasn't joking about the music video — see the skintastic compilation here >>

But I didn't know who she was for "Empire." That's because I have been around only long enough to know of her more mainstream hits.

Anywhere you look, regardless of who is reporting, this single is a winner. Why? Because it's an anthem. Because it's empowering but still tender, charming but not overwhelming, with a message that sounds subtle but is significant. But if you notice, all of those qualities describe Shakira — it's just this song doesn't sound like the Shakira that's become a household name stateside.

The Latin charm that she otherwise exudes seems absent, and it resembles hits on the alternative rock/easy rock spectrum. What if Annie Lennox merged with Lenka? That is the crossroad named "Empire."

The Colombian songstress has emerged with this seemingly new side and a product that has her being both edgy and vulnerable. Longtime fans may recognize this Shakira from her earlier albums. But all I can say definitively is that whoever is helping her plan her releases deserves every penny he or she is receiving. This couldn't have come at a better time. Shakira's getting ready to release new work, and we're all eagerly anticipating it. The self-titled 10th album Shakira will be out on March 25.

How does she find the time between being a devoted wife and mother, passionate artist and crafty businesswoman? I can barely find a way to put on socks on the right feet in the morning! Check out the release below.

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Comments on "Music review: Shakira is on a rampage with "Empire""

Bill Hemeon March 18, 2014 | 11:21 AM

She started out as a rocker and it's about time she started to lean in that direction again. She's been doing to much(Pop)corn music of late which is probably fun and somewhat easy for her, though it doesn't really challenge her to push the envelope concerning her musical,instrumental and vocal talents. I think she's at her best when straddling that fine line of hard and edgy rock mixed in with those deep,soft feeling ballads that Shak does as good as any artist in the game.

Lala February 27, 2014 | 7:03 PM

This is very very similar to Shakira's old style of music... a melodic rocksong. Im glad you like the song though.

Laila February 27, 2014 | 8:00 AM

I agree with Shakira's Fans. This guy does not know Shakira. Love this song. I hope it becomes a hit and I hear it on the radio.

Marie February 27, 2014 | 7:47 AM

I like the praise, but you lost me at "doesn't sound like Shakira." There is no such thing as "doesn't sound like Shakira." Listen to her full discography and get back to two albums sound the same. She's done rock, reggaeton, pop, folk, etc. etc. and employs lots of vocal styles. If anything, this song reminds me of the Oral Fixation album, but even better.

Camilo February 26, 2014 | 9:49 PM

Whoever wrote this article really does not know Shakira's music. Listen to Pies Descalzos, Donde estan los ladrones and Shakira's MTV unplugged! Even some of Sale el sol tracks. What are you talking about? Shakira's best songs are rock songs without a doubt! and to her fans it is very refreshing that she is going back to her original roots! ROCK!!! This is a VERY familiar Shakira sound! Do your homework before writing!

Vic February 26, 2014 | 8:58 PM

LOL " it's just this song doesn't sound like Shakira." Keep in mind Shakira is known not only for Hips Don't Lie, She Wolf or Whatever Whenever.

John Simpson February 26, 2014 | 4:21 PM

This guy is the worst journalist in history. He literally did no research that Shakira is more of Rock artist, before of a pop artist. She has more rock songs than pop songs. This is one of the most Shakira song I have ever heard.

Anderson Souto February 26, 2014 | 3:32 PM

well dear you should do some research before wrapping up! Empire may sound new to you but any shakira fan (truly fan) knows what she is capable of... in 1998 she wrote inevitable very similar and yet one of the best songs of her career, in her last studio album you can hear devocion, again very rocky and same style, in her english album you can her Fool or even Poems to a hoarse, it is nice thou that she is showing the world that side of her but for us we heard that shakira before and we love her probably for that and not for the hips that don't like.. we leave that for the commercial hunter of one hit only!

Pete February 26, 2014 | 8:05 AM

Heard the first 30 seconds of the song and I was hooked. She got my coins!

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