Reviews

Billie Eilish – WHEN WE ALL FALL ASLEEP, WHERE DO WE GO?: Album Review

At only 17 years old Billie Eilish has took the music world by storm. Without ever releasing a studio album she gained traction unlike any other, traction that has only continued. Prior to the release of this debut album it had been pre-added on Apple Music over 800,000 times; more than any album ever. We have a real star on our hands that most likely not going to be dimmed, regardless of album quality.

That’s right, Billie Eilish is untouchable at the moment. This could’ve been a monumental flop, and guess what? She’d be number one in the charts, she’d have a huge fan base, and it’d likely continue to grow. For me that’s the big fear, memes are circulating slowly as Eilish becomes perhaps a little over-saturated. Some are suggesting Eilish is an industry plant being shoved down the public’s throats. Luckily for us the content that’s hard to avoid is well worth a listen.

Written and produced entirely by herself and her brother Finneas, the album toys with a multitude of genres that go from soft to hard and light to dark. Opening with a brief yet playful interlude, the album then goes into Billie’s most recent single, ‘bad guy’. This anti-pop banger is the perfect opener for the album, showing off a vast array of Billie’s sounds from it’s exuberant hook through to it’s bass boosted bridge towards the end of the track. The insanely cool cadence on the memorable “Duh” line might actually be the most standout part of the project.

From here on we see diversity by the bucket load as track three, ‘xanny’, exchanges a fun feel for something much softer and subtle. Drugs in music has been a hot topic for years, with Eilish using her platform to promote safety.

The records promotional singles bolster the album massively in the middle of the project with the albums lead single, you should see me in a crown, maintaining the same firepower it did last year. ‘wish you were gay’ and ‘when the party’s over’ are both beautiful tracks displaying Billie’s ability to tell stories and do so in the most sonically pleasing way possible.

Production is at it’s craziest on two ends of the spectrum with ‘8’ and ‘my strange addiction’. Eilish and Finneas utilise auto tune on ‘8’ with a sample of TV show The Office on the latter. It’s this long list of ideas that have been used that make this project so successful. There’s so many different things going on yet it’s all blended so seamlessly, it’s so many different shades.

The last three tracks of the album all have a slower tempo and as a result it’s the first time in the entire project that those different shades I’ve just mentioned are slightly lost. Tracks one through to 11 are a whirlwind of highs and lows, with tracks 12 through to 14 being a lot more down trodden, all be it gorgeously executed.

Billie and her brother Finneas have let their imaginations run wild on this project, showing maturity in their musical IQ’s yet allowing their youthfulness to flow throughout the album. Teenagers will more likely find themselves relating to this more than they will most projects this year. It’s fully immersive, sonically pleasing, and uniquely presented. Without question this will be one of the best and most assured debut albums of 2019, one that has left Eilish on the biggest upward trend you’ll likely see for some time.

8.5

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