As the ninth track on the Fifty Shades Darker Original Motion Picture Soundtrack, Sia’s “Helium” makes me believe that the movie, Fifty Shades Darker, might be more than just another cheesy and scandalous romance.
“Helium” is gorgeous ballad, opening softly with a quiet violin, a piano, and Sia’s unique and familiar voice. As the song progresses both the instruments and Sia’s vocals build, getting increasingly louder as she admits that she “wanted to play tough” and be “on [her] own.” Finally, we hear her distinctive belt through the chorus as she admits that she needs help “out of this hell.” The symphonic arrangement and vocal harmonies throughout this track make me feel as though I am in a trance like state, working flawlessly to convey the message of the song. In comparison to her tranquil and restrained voice in “Salted Wound,” her track from the Fifty Shades of Grey Soundtrack, Sia’s voice in “Helium” is much more vibrant and strong. Her vocals are not pushed aside to the hypnotic harmonies or beautiful orchestra behind her, instead, the sounds work together to create a dream-like masterpiece.
This track’s lyrics are empowering: they show how one’s love can help an individual overcome a tough situation in the same way that helium can lift up a balloon. “Helium” contradicts the idealized independence that so many of today’s songs demonstrate. Instead of judging and condemning the reliance that people have on others and their love, Sia glorifies it and reminds us that, “even Superwoman sometimes needed Superman’s soul.” “Helium” preaches the fact that love can lift up a person’s spirits and make them stronger. Sia’s previous hits, such as “Chandelier,” “Elastic Heart,” and “Cheap Thrills” have always stuck in my head and this song has already made its way onto my list of songs to belt out in the shower. Sia’s “Helium” has certainly set my expectations for Fifty Shades Darker high.
You can listen to “Helium” here.