For a few years now, Billie Eilish has been increasing in popularity with hits like “ocean eyes” and “lovely”, and has recently hit a huge spike as she dropped her debut album, “WHEN WE ALL FALL ASLEEP, WHERE DO WE GO”, on March 29th of this year. Although she’s has many singles and an EP, this is our first look at Billie as an artist, and the artistry she’s demonstrated so far is amazing, especially for someone her age. A 17 year old singer from Los Angeles, Billie has created quite the fanbase with her “emo-pop” sound: a growing genre where the music tends to have a very pop tone, while the lyrics tend to be intense or darker than most.
Because she’s such a young artist and is still very new to the industry, I didn’t know what to expect with this one, but she really came through. Many artists tend to release an album with different songs of different styles all at the same time, usually for the sake of keeping fans happy rather than releasing the best possible work they can. Billie delivered on the latter. The album as a whole tells a story, with songs like “8”, which talks about someone who’s hurting while their words fall on deaf ears, and “i love you”, talking about the struggles of a complicated relationship.
My favorite part about the album is that it’s fluid from one song to another. The best example of this is at the end of “bury a friend”, a track she released a few months ago as a single that later returned on the album. At the end of the song we hear a beat entirely different than that of the rest of the song, and up until the release of the album, was just assumed to be the end of the track. However, if you listen to every song in order, the track after it, “ilomilo”, blends seamlessly from the end of the previous track into that one. If you didn’t know any better you’d think it’s just one song with two different parts. It’s a detail that could easily go overlooked, but it’s details like that that make her album what it is.
Although very intense at times, her album has a playful side as well. “my strange addiction”, for example, starts out with an audio clip from a very famous episode of “The Office”, a show that Eilish has talked about multiple times, saying its one of her favorite things of all time. For fans of the show, you’re sure to be familiar with “Threat Level Midnight”, where Michael Scott makes a movie about a hero named Michael Scarn. His dance, The Scarn, is the beat for the base track of the entire song. It’s something that’s fun and light hearted, and makes for a nice break from the heavy topics in some of her music.
Overall, I give the album 8.5/10. For her first full length album, she did an outstanding job, comparable to many stars that have been making music for a much longer time than she has. With time and more practice, her work has amazing potential, and I can’t wait to see what she comes up with next.