The Singles Bar: Bruno Mars, "It Will Rain"

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If you think about it, Bruno Mars is the most Twilight of anyone in pop. Sap? He loves you just the way you are. Drama? He'll catch grenades, take bullets and fling himself at moving trains for you. Traditional romance? He wants to marry you. Being a vampire? "The Other Side" has the line "you go about your day, baby, while I hide from the sun," not to mention "Yeah, I'm a monster, but I'm no Frankenstein" and "You know, I'll be waiting on the other side, and all you gotta do is cross the line."

So if Bruno must actually chase the Twilight, those lines all seem perfect for the movie, right? Practically yanked from Edward's script. We're not the only ones to think so, either. Wouldn't it be convenient to stick that on the Breaking Dawn soundtrack and not write an entire new song? Guess not. (Maybe guests Cee Lo Green or B.o.B aren't fans.) Listen to "It Will Rain," what we got instead:

The guiding principle of "It Will Rain" is simple: take "Grenade" and ease up on the bombast, yet somehow make the track even more dramatic. This means a cloudscape of strings and far-off percussion, it means backing vocals that lilt, not burst, and it means Bruno Mars continuing to be himself. He's always the professional; it shouldn't be surprising that he sings this well. As for the words he sings, best not to think about those too much. (There'll be no sunlight if he loses Bella you--but isn't that primo vampire climate? Isn't Bruno Mars' entire image built on not being a "troublesome guy"? Isn't all this talk about "keep in mind the sacrifices I'm making" and doing morphine if she leaves kind of manipulative, if you get down to it?)

"It Will Rain" is nothing if not competent. People will swoon, cry and tack Twilight's story to every part of the track. Boyfriends and prospective boyfriends are probably already borrowing the song for future serenades. All that said, if Mars were to release this as a single with no tie-in, it'd be about his fourth-best. He's done dramatic and romantic with much more panache; by contrast, "It Will Rain" is a gentle drizzle that comes and goes with little impression.


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