Billie Eilish: breaking away from pop music stereotypes


Go Moxie

Album cover for new Billie Eilish album "WHEN WE ALL FALL ASLEEP WHERE DO WE GO?"

Billie Eilish is a name many people know but her unorthodox approach to the music scene makes her stand out. With both her clothing and music style she is definitely out of the box.

Her recent success has MTV Video Music awards for Best Editing and Best New Artist, as well as Favorite Breakout Artist at the Kids’ Choice Awards. Most likely you have heard at least one of her songs. The singer/songwriter has accomplished a lot in the three years that she has been releasing music.

Since publishing her first song “Ocean Eyes” when she was 14, Billie Eilish has racked up 54 million monthly listeners on Spotify, 48 million Instagram followers, and 3 million followers on twitter. Her EP sat at the stop of the Billboard Top 200 chart for more than 18 months. Her album “WHEN WE ALL FALL ASLEEP, WHERE DO WE GO?” came out in March of 2019 and consists of 144 songs that she wrote with her brother Finneas O’Connell. The song “bury a friend” came out before the album was released.

“When we made ‘bury a friend,’ the whole album clicked in my head,” Billie explains.“I immediately knew what it was going to be about, what the visuals were going to be, and everything in terms of how I wanted it to be perceived. It inspired what the album is about. ‘bury a friend’ is literally from the perspective of the monster under my bed. If you put yourself in that mindset, what is this creature doing or feeling?” She continues. “I also confess that I’m this monster, because I’m my own worst enemy. I might be the monster under your bed too.”

I immediately knew what it was going to be about, what the visuals were going to be, and everything in terms of how I wanted it to be perceived.”

— Billie Eilish

The album is inspired by her night terrors and lucid dreams. It balances dark topics and with her soft voice. The album starts with a goofy introduction called “!!!!!!!” where you can hear Eilish take out her Invisalign and laughing while saying “My Invisalign is out and this is the album!” The album consists of many more moments like this throughout the album, like random moments of laughter and even the audio clip from her favorite show, The Office. The second song is “bad guy” a bass heavy song with almost whispering soft vocals. The album has both soft songs like “xanny” and “i love you” and more heavy songs like “bury a friend” and “bad guy.” “Xanny” is a song focused around drug addiction. In the song she talks about how everyone around her is on Xanax or other drugs in order to make themselves happy. She talks about how these people are a mess and don’t do anything. The lyrics “On designated drivers home, only one whose not stoned, don’t give me a xanny now or ever,” shows that the singer stays away from drugs. This is due to her losing friends from them being addicted to drugs.

Overall the album shows the singers out of the box personality with its wide range style in the songs and its quirky moments alongside the songs. Eilish manages to fit in important messages like effects of drug addiction yet still bring songs that hype up the audience. As such a young artist she is going to be the person kids look up too and honestly she isn’t a bad option for it.