Demi Lovato is not a typical artist that I’d listen to. On the contrary, she’s quite far from my cup of tea. Disney star, you automatically assume she’s in the same group as Miley Cyrus, Selena Gomez and other stars of the same franchise. However, unlike them, life hasn’t always been peachy for Demi. I refuse to believe that Miley’s current “problems” are really problems and Selena Gomez having to suffer because of Justin Bieber’s rabid fanbase doesn’t exactly count.
Demi, however, has had to fight bulimia and body issues and bullying, which led her to cutting. Keep in mind that she’s only 18. And it’s in that context that the artist presents her latest single: Skyscraper.
She starts the piano-driven song with a weak whisper: “Skies are crying, I am watching… catching teardrops in my hands. Only silence as it’s ending like we never had a chance. Do you have to make me feel like there’s nothing of me?”
But even with her pain and weakness, she tries to say that nothing can bring her down on the chorus: “you can take everything I have. You can break everything I am, like I’m made of glass, like I’m made of paper. Go on and try to tear me down, I will be rising from the ground like a skyscraper…”
As she finishes the first chorus, she gains strength that goes into the song’s second verse: “As the smoke clears, I awaken and untangle you from me. Would it make feel better, to watch me while I bleed? All my windows, still are broken. But I’m standing on my feet,” before delivering a stronger rendition of the chorus.
Then she goes to the song’s bridge, which is also another step up in the vocal strength department. “Go run, run, run, I’m gonna stay right here, watch you disappear,” she fiercely sings. “Go run, run, run, yeah, it’s a long way down but I’m closer to the clouds up here,” before she goes into a final rendition of the song’s chorus that starts off with a whisper before she goes full on vocally in what could only be described as an overwhelmingly emotional conclusion. You can feel her voice somewhat break off in tears towards the end.
And it’s precisely that. Skyscraper is the progression of the person who has been wronged. You start off trying to make sense of your problem, rightfully convincing yourself that you’re not the one mistaken here. But even though you’re the one in the right, you are still weak. But as you go on, you gain strength. You realize that you’re not a two-story house that anyone can bring down, you’re a full-blown skyscraper that touches the skies. You realize your own strength.
And it’s because it’s deeply personal that Skyscraper simply works. And it works brilliantly. Demi Lovato emotes with ease because the song reflects her struggle. Even without hearing the lyrics, you can deduce the song’s contents from her impeccable delivery. And it is precisely from her pain and anguish that something like Skyscraper can raise.
Skyscraper may not be the most radio-friendly song for any artist to have as their lead single. But with something like this, who cares? For all matters and purposes, one would be proud to buy a song like Skyscraper, a song that is brimming to the tip with essence and emotion.
Demi recently tweeted that this single is more than a song for her. She said the strength the song represents of the journey she has been on would give other people who are going through dark moments as well the faith and inspiration to face their problems like she did. And even though it’s just a song, the power that Skyscraper represents is the ability to make you feel better. The best analogy for this song would be a phoenix rising from the ashes. By the end, it flies away to the clouds where no one can try to damage it.
Listen to Skyscraper: