197. Kelly Osbourne – ‘One Word’ (2005)

“Silence tells me all I need to know”

Taken from the album Sleeping In The Nothing

UK #9, AUS #38

I’ve been through ‘Fade To Grey’ already but this is just superior. Erasing all memory of what Kelly Osbourne was and would become, for one album she was an electro goddess, singing unbelievably good songs like ‘One Word’. Heavy on synths and processed vocals, it is like a lesson in electronic pop, drowned in “cool” references like Kelly’s severe image throughout the campaign, the French language samples and the super-stylised video.

‘One Word’ is melodically fascinating, which comes from the huge sample it takes from ‘Fade To Grey’ – it’s hilarious now that they ever tried to bypass the fact that half of this song is from that song – and Kelly’s bored vocal highlights the bleak instrumental and nonsensical lyrics. All of these elements are good things, by the way. This is a certain type of electronica it is hard to do well, because it can so easily become pretentious and boring. Here, though, it just sounds wonderful, infectious and mature.

The video is really something special – every movement of every person is exaggerated and highlighted, yet it all seems so slight and simple. In black and white, Kelly travels through a building that seems to be manufacturing women for sale (or something – it’s not really important) while she takes photos of everything and walks down hallways really fast. It’s such a cool visual, and complements the music perfectly. The moment when the music climaxes and the bird wings appear behind the man is a fantastic music video moment – and ‘One Word’ isn’t just a career highlight for Kelly, it’s a decade highlight for electronic music.

Music video:

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