Pop Perspective: Fergie’s “Life Goes On” Rated & Reviewed
At Idolator, the editors share a passion for high-quality pop. Occasionally, our tastes align. Other times, not so much. So, in the spirit of debate (and online drama), we’ve developed a recurring feature called Pop Perspective. In a nutshell, our editors dissect a particularly noteworthy pop-event, and give it a rating out of 10.
That way you’re getting a full spectrum of views and we can all vent. (It’s cheaper than therapy!) The latest track to be dragged under the Idolator microscope is Fergie’s latest reminder that her comeback is still happening, “Life Goes On.” Is the uplifting anthem a “Glamorous”-sized hit or has she missed the mark? Read our thoughts below.
Robbie Daw — 7/10
Had it been released any other week, “Life Goes On” might seem like a pop trifle, if not a nice change-up from the sassy Fergie we heard on summer single “M.I.L.F. $.” But given the psychologically-bruising election results on Wednesday — and, make no mistake: the marketing team on Fergie’s label recognized this — this is the right anthem to put out there at the exact right time.
I’ve personally always thought Fergie The Solo Artist shined best with her more melodic and lyrically introspective musings on life like “Glamorous” and “Big Girls Don’t Cry,” rather than in-your-face cuts like “London Bridge” or “L.A. Love (La La).” So it’s nice to hear The Dutchess getting personal once again. Overall, “Life Goes On” isn’t a great leap forward for pop, but it’s light and soothing — and what more could we ask for this week? Plus if this doesn’t get her back on crossover radio, what possibly will?
Rachel Sonis — 6.5/10
I agree with Robbie’s initial post — “Life Goes On” came out at the right time and at the right place. It’s not revolutionary or anything but hey — it’s dreamy and light-hearted, which is refreshing in such uncertain political times. Not to mention, it also sounds like an updated version of her 2006 hit “Big Girls Don’t Cry,” so it’ll probably do really well on Top 40 radio, too.
Bottom line — this made me kind of excited for her forthcoming album. Whenever they decide to release it, that is.
Carl Williott — 6/10
My first thought after the chorus was “oh hey a new Dua Lipa song.” It wasn’t until about the halfway point that Fergie makes it a Fergie affair, and that second half is when the song comes alive. At that point it’s a convincing mix of her sensitive and swaggy sides, I’m just not sure the buildup is worth the wait.
If “MILF $” was an airhorn, this is pleasant background noise.
Mike Wass — 6/10
I love Fergie. I bought every Black Eyed Peas album (including The Beginning) and think The Dutchess ranks as one of the best pop albums of the ’00s. What I’m trying to say is, my expectations for her sophomore LP are high. Like really, really high and I’m starting to get the sinking feeling that disappointment awaits. I know I’m in the minority here, but I appreciated “M.I.L.F. $.” It was a swing and a miss, but there’s nothing apologetic or sheepish about that record. She went for it and started an important conversation about ageism in pop in the process.
“Life Goes On,” by comparison, is extremely safe and watered-down. It would make a perfectly reasonable album track, but you can’t make fans wait a decade and then feed them filler. As Carl says, the song really comes alive towards the end with that oddball spoken/rapped verse, but it’s not quite enough. Fergie will still get my $1.29 (I’m not about to break the habit of a lifetime), but it’s time for her to stop playing and deliver a knock-out punch. I know she’s still got it in her.
AVERAGE SCORE: 6.4/10