100 songs of the decade: Shake It Out – Florence + The Machine

 100 songs of the decade: Shake It Out – Florence + The Machine

Written by: Florence Welch and Paul Epworth
Produced by: Paul Epworth
Album: Ceremonials
UK release: September 2011
UK chart peak: 12

I’m not the world’s biggest Florence + The Machine stan, but I just couldn’t resist this one. She’s one of those artists I’ve always really liked in interviews but have struggled to connect with their music; but with the SIZE of the chorus on Shake It Out, it was a direct hit.

This Epworthbanger – which INCIDENTALLY has been covered excellently by Kelly Clarkson – takes the kind of ~earthy late-00s flowers-in-the-hair-at-a-festival sound that made the Lungs era so successful and plonks it in the middle of a giant stadium with, like, lasers and things. And it really, really works.

Everything’s brilliant; from the restrained opening to the triumphant middle-8 into the final chorus. At nearly five minutes, it’s one of the longest track in this 100 Songs collection but to be honest I’d be happy if it was even longer.

  • I’ll be writing about my favourite 100 pop songs of the decade; one a day for the last 100 days of 2019. They’re in no particular order, except the Top 10 – which will (obviously) come in late December.
  • See the full list so far here.
  • You can follow the rolling, daily-updated playlist below, or here.

Shaun Kitchener


Scriptwriter for the theatre and TV (currently Hollyoaks) and freelance entertainment ~reportage.