The Flood (Cheryl song)

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"The Flood"
Cheryl Cole - The Flood (Official Single Cover).png
Single by Cheryl
from the album Messy Little Raindrops
Released 2 January 2011
Recorded 2010
Length 3:57
Label Fascination
  • Wilkins
  • Antwoine "T-Wiz" Collins
Cheryl singles chronology
"Promise This"
"The Flood"
"Call My Name"

"The Flood" is a song by English recording artist Cheryl. The song was written by Priscilla Hamilton and Wayne Wilkins, for Cheryl's second studio album, Messy Little Raindrops (2010). It was released on 2 January 2011 through Fascination Records, as the album's second and final single. The song, produced by Wilkins and Antwoine Collins, has lyrics that refer to a "natural disaster love" and make many allusions to shipwreck, the sea, and water.

"The Flood" received mixed reviews from music critics. Despite some saying the song is perfectly suited to Cheryl's voice, critics questioned Cheryl's effectiveness as a balladeer, while calling the song "a flood of stool". "The Flood" achieved moderate success, peaking at number eighteen in the United Kingdom, making it Cheryl's first solo single to not enter the top 5 on the chart. The song also peaked at number twenty-six in Ireland and at number forty-six in Europe.

An accompanying music video for the song, directed by Sophie Muller, was released on 24 November 2010. Filmed on the southern coast of England, it portrays Cheryl alone in a remote house overlooking a stormy ocean, while she struggles to adjust to life without her love. "The Flood" was performed at 2010's Royal Variety Performance in front of Charles, Prince of Wales and his wife Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall. It was also performed in an acoustic form, along with "Promise This", on Alan Carr: Chatty Man.


"The Flood" was written by Priscilla Hamilton and Wayne Wilkins, who also produced the song, along with Antwoine "T-Wiz" Collins.[1] It is a pop song[2][3] with strong hooks and synthesised strings.[3] The song composed in the key of C major and is set in time signature of common time with a tempo of 80 beats per minute. The song has a basic sequence of C–C–G/D–Am–C/E as its chord progression.[4] Cole's vocals range from G4-D6.[5] The lyrical content of the song was described as "a massive, strong-laden, Christmassy tear-jerker about 'wreckage', 'drowning' and 'natural disaster love,'"[2] while noticing the song's trip hop influences.[3] "The Flood" received comparisons to songs by singer-songwriter Natalie Imbruglia.[6]

Critical reception

The song received a positive review from Digital Spy reviewer Nick Levine who gave the song four out of five stars. He wrote, "Cole's no Leona of course, but she more than holds her own vocally as she delivers an extended and just-slightly-strained love-as-h20 metaphor."[2] Adrian Thrills of the Daily Mail noted that it "builds from an acoustic introduction into a beguiling, trip-hop ballad that is perfectly suited to Cole’s plaintive voice."[3] Critics questioned Cole's effectiveness as a balladeer. The Guardian's Maddy Costa criticized the song's "lacklustre quality exacerbated by Cole's weakness as a balladeer and her (understandable) difficulty injecting feeling into a love song."[7] Tom Hocknell of BBC Music wrote, Cole "loses focus with The Flood, stretching a shipwreck analogy over an uncomfortable four minutes."[8] Luke Turner of NME gave the song a negative review comparing it to "a flood of stool."[9]

Chart performance

On the week of 13 November 2010, "The Flood" debuted at number eighty-one in the United Kingdom. The song peaked at number eighteen six weeks later, making it the first solo single by Cole not to reach the top five in the UK. It also became only the second single in her entire career to miss the Top 10 in the United Kingdom, the first being "Untouchable" two years before with Girls Aloud. "The Flood" was Cole's lowest-charting single, until it was surpassed by "Only Human", which peaked at number 70 in 2014.[10] The song also peaked at number twenty-six in Ireland.

Music video

Cole staring at the ocean from a remote house, trying to adjust to life without her love.

Before the release of the album, a preview of "The Flood" was first premiered through Cole's official website.[2] Later, the music video for the song, directed by Sophie Muller, premiered on 24 November 2010,[11][12] three weeks after the album's release. It was filmed against a backdrop of white cliffs on England's south coast. The music video portrays a lonely Cole in intercalate scenes as she struggles to adjust to life without her love, including in a remote house overlooking a stormy ocean, sitting beside a bonfire, walking along a beach in stormy weather, tossing and turning in bed and in an underwater room.[12]

Live performances

"The Flood" was performed at the 82nd annual Royal Variety Performance, held at the London Palladium theatre with Charles, Prince of Wales and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall in attendance.[13][14] She wore a gown from Roberto Cavalli's spring 2011 collection with jewelry by David Morris.[15][16] Cole also performed on the 20 December 2010 episode of Alan Carr: Chatty Man, singing "The Flood" and an acoustic version of "Promise This".[17]

Track listing

  1. "The Flood" — 3:57
  2. "The Flood" (The Wideboys Radio Edit) — 3:01
  • Digital download[19]
  1. "The Flood" — 3:57
  2. "The Flood" (The Wideboys Radio Edit) — 3:01
  3. "The Flood" (The Alias Radio Edit) — 3:14
  4. "The Flood" (Loco Remix) — 3:31

Credits and personnel



Chart (2010) Peak
Ireland (IRMA)[20] 26
Scotland (Official Charts Company)[21] 14
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[22] 18

Release history

Region Date Format Label
Ireland[23] 2 January 2011 Digital download Fascination Records
United Kingdom[19]
United Kingdom[18] 3 January 2011 CD single


  1. ^ a b Messy Little Raindrops (Booklet). Cheryl Cole. London, UK: Fascination, Polydor Records (Cat no. 2753287). 2010.
  2. ^ a b c d Robert Copsey (15 October 2010). "Cheryl Cole previews new single". Digital Spy. Hachette Filipacchi Médias. Retrieved 29 December 2010.
  3. ^ a b c d Adrian Thrills (30 October 2010). "Cheryl Cole: You're no Aretha, but you CAN sing!". Daily Mail. Associated Newspapers. Retrieved 29 December 2010.
  4. ^ "Cheryl Cole The Flood – Digital Sheet Music". Music Notes. Hal Leonard Corporation. Retrieved 2010-02-06.
  5. ^
  6. ^ Simon Price (31 October 2010). "Stick with the Girls: Cheryl's solo effort fails to light up". The Independent. Independent News and Media. Retrieved 2 November 2010.
  7. ^ Maddy Costa (28 October 2010). "Cheryl Cole: Messy Little Raindrops - review". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 30 October 2010.
  8. ^ Tom Hocknell (28 October 2010). "Review of Cheryl Cole - Messy Little Raindrops". BBC Music. BBC. Retrieved 30 October 2010.
  9. ^ Luke Turner (29 October 2010). "Album Review: Cheryl Cole - Messy Little Raindrops (Polydor)". NME. IPC Media. Retrieved 29 December 2010.
  10. ^ "Cheryl Cole - The Flood". Chart Stats. Archived from the original on 22 July 2012. Retrieved 29 December 2010.
  11. ^ John Dorian (25 November 2010). "Cheryl Cole premieres music video for The Flood". International Business Times. Archived from the original on 6 April 2012. Retrieved 29 December 2010.
  12. ^ a b "Cheryl Cole shows her moody side in new video The Flood". Daily Mail. Associated Newspapers. 25 November 2010. Retrieved 29 November 2010.
  13. ^ Ryan Love (10 November 2010). "Take That, Cheryl Cole for 'Royal Variety'". Digital Spy. Hachette Filipacchi Médias. Retrieved 29 December 2010.
  14. ^ "Famous names to entertain Royal couple". The Press Association. Google News. 9 December 2010. Retrieved 29 December 2010.
  15. ^ "Cheryl Cole in Roberto Cavalli at the 82nd Royal Variety Performance". Roberto Cavalli Official Blog. Roberto Cavalli. Retrieved 29 December 2010.
  16. ^ James Knowles (17 December 2010). "Cheryl Cole royally ravishing in David Morris". Retail Jeweller. EMAP. Retrieved 29 December 2010.
  17. ^ Perez Hilton (23 October 2010). "Listen to acoustic Chezza!". Retrieved 29 December 2010.
  18. ^ a b "The Flood: Cheryl Cole". Retrieved 29 December 2010.
  19. ^ a b "The Flood - EP by Cheryl Cole". iTunes Store (Great Britain). Apple Inc. Retrieved 29 December 2010.
  20. ^ "Chart Track: Week 52, 2010". Irish Singles Chart.
  21. ^ "Official Scottish Singles Sales Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company.
  22. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company.
  23. ^ "The Flood - EP by Cheryl Cole". iTunes Store (Ireland). Apple Inc. Retrieved 29 December 2010.
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