“Cold Heart (PNAU Remix)” by Elton John and Dua Lipa
As generally understood, from a lyrical perspective “Cold Heart” is a mash-up of some older Sir John tracks, sorta serving as a 2020s tribute to the Rocketman, if you will. But when all of these segments are put together, they do form a cohesive narrative.
And whereas there is some notable wordplay utilized (i.e. Dua referring to herself as a “man” in the chorus), the simplest way of explaining this piece would be as the tale of two lovers, i.e. the vocalists, who have apparently broken up but are having a hard time getting over each other.
And the titular “cold heart” basically points to the idea of them blaming each other in terms of being the one who destroyed their belief in love, so to speak. Or put more into non-metaphorical terms, they may be exes alright but still, obviously, have feelings for each other.
And that would be why even in the aftermath of having parted ways, they are finding it difficult to actually move on with their respective lives. But again, considering that Dua is only really holding down the main chorus while the actual verses belong to Elton, perhaps a more proper explanation would be that they’re both portraying the same character, i.e. Lipa buttressing John.
Facts about “Cold Heart”
Lyrically this song is a combination of few earlier Elton John tracks, most notably 1972’s “Rocket Man” and 1989’s “Sacrifice“. And for the record, it also interpolates another of Sir John’s tunes, that being 1976’s “Where’s the Shoorah” as well as 1983’s “Kiss the Bride”.
This is the first collaboration between Elton John and Dua Lipa, with the former being approximately 50 years and about 10 music generations older than the latter. But of course the Rocketman, whose discography dates all the way back to the late-1960s, has been one of the most resilient musicians in history. For example, his first UK Singles Chart topper came in 1976 with “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart“, a collaboration with Kiki Dee.
And “Cold Heart”, which was released as recently as 13 August 2021, got as high as number two on the list and did top The Official Big Top 40, another chart in the UK.
This track was put out by EMI Records and Mercury Records. It acts as the lead single from Elton John’s 32nd studio album. The album is titled “The Lockdown Sessions”.
The “PNAU” found in this track’s title is actually the name of the unit of musicians from Australia who produced this track. And the three members of the outfit are also credited as co-writers of “Cold Heart” alongside Elton John and his own established musical companion, Bernie Taupin.
The aforementioned members of PNAU are: Peter Mayes and the Littlemore brothers, Sam and Nicholas
The first teasing of this track came a few days before its official release.
Whereas up until this point, “Cold Heart” hasn’t achieved any commercial certificates, it was a major international hit chart-wise, charting in nearly 40 countries overall. In the United States, it fared most impressively on Billboard’s Hot Dance/Electronic Songs chart. Here it achieved top-5 status.
And to note, whereas the tune didn’t perform nearly as well on the Hot 100 itself it did appear on the list nonetheless. This marked the first time Sir John has managed to do so in over two decades. However, this would still represent the 68th time Elton has made it onto the Billboard Hot 100 in general.
In April of 2021, Dua Lipa did team up with Elton John at the latter’s Oscar party to perform a few tracks together. And they became friends prior, around the time of the release of Lipa’s remix album “Club Future Nostalgia”, which came out around mid-2020.
The music video to this track, which is an animated affair (as suggested by the cover art), was directed by Raman Djafari.
Below are the countries in which “Cold Heart” became a top-10 hit:
- El Salvador
- New Zealand
- United Kingdom
What Elton and Lipa have both said about this collaboration
In an interview, Dua Lipa referred to Sir Elton John as an inspiration. She subsequently referred to the collaboration as “an absolute honor and privilege”
Elton John also had a lot of praises to heap on his younger collaborator (Lipa). He referred to her as “a truly wonderful artist and person”. He also praised the energy she brought into the song.