Photo Credit: Facebook @billieeilish
Billie Eilish is a dark light to a world in need of fresh talent. The 17-year-old, rising anti-pop icon, has taken over the world in her own unique way, and created a fan following that rivals any on the planet. With over a billion listens on Spotify alone, Eilish’s fans can expect to be “in a scene” with this budding artist. The hype warranted, her music plays well to a younger demographic, catching listeners with soft, melodic hooks, gracefully sung from a relatable girl, poised beyond her years. As is true, this musical conquest is a family affair. Billie takes on the writing process with her brother, Finneas, and also the stage, as he accompanies her on a variety of instruments.
Having dropped her first album on March 29th of 2019, fans finally get to enjoy a full LP, as her previous releases had been in the form of singles, spread over the course of years, since 2016. The culmination of her steady effort is a breathtaking and artistically valid 14-song album, eerily and aptly named, When We Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? Billie seems to take on the avant-garde with a relish and authenticity that amplifies her dark vibe, hauntingly engaging the listener to feel her sweet deceit.
The new single, “Bury a Friend”, hit the charts worldwide, bringing with it critical acclaim and a deeply inspired video. One of the many interesting aspects of Eilish’s career is her music videos. They aim to rouse, containing contemporary dance, tarantulas, and stunning, cinematic visuals. Her taped live performances highlight her professionalism and the fact that most of her fans know every lyric to each of her songs. There seems to be a resounding affection for her style of openness and candor.
There is no mistaking that Eilish’s voice is unique, her trademark whisper-hush, a potent and easy longing to indulge in. As a rambunctious teen, she parries her vocal purity with hip-hop style bravado, baggy clothing, high top sneakers, and blue-dyed hair. Her iconic style counters the elegance of her voice, a down home vibe that screams mock irreverence. As she feels her way through fame and an expanding musical landscape, she tips her hat to musical influences such as Lana Del Ray and Tyler The Creator, stating that hip-hop is shaping the modern world, whether we acknowledge it or not. Eilish always seems eager to frame her world.
As a youth of the media age, Billie stays ever present with her fans, performing in intimate settings and giving life advice to those who struggle with the issues presented in her music. As parents might question, “Is she a positive role model?” Recently, Eilish stated, “I have never done drugs, I’ve never got high, and I’ve never smoked anything in my life. I don’t give a f*ck, I never have.” She elaborated, “It’s just not interesting to me. I have other sh*t to do.” There may be a darker side to her music, yet Eilish seems to have her head on straight, her priorities in check, and a sense of self-worth that many artists lack in their formative years.
The totality of pop music today is less a horizon, and more a known landscape, yet Billie Eilish stands farther from the pack and we haven’t caught up to her yet, not in the act. She remains as elusive as her voice, a creative force that speaks to a generation in alarm. We can’t always get what we want, but we can at least count on what we’ve found. Billie Eilish is the new pop queen and she is here to stay.