Fans of a younger Björk are going to eat her up. Hailing from Hereford, England, Ellie Goulding has come a long way for a girl whose mother used to tell her to "shut up" when she sang at home; apparently, her voice was "weird". A drama student on hiatus, Goulding decided to take up music fulltime and after convincing much blogged about electro-pop darling Frankmusik to collaborate together with a message on Myspace, it wouldn't be long before she landed a deal with Polydor (Universal Music) and won a Critic's Choice Award at the 2010 BRITs. She is the next big thing.
Goulding's debut album Lights has been eagerly anticipated for quite some time among those in the music circle and it is a gorgeous collection of ten songs which leave the listener excited for more. And I am impressed that Universal Music is releasing the album in Europe and Canada simultaneously before that big U.S. release, which seems to be a wise strategy for any artist dependent on Internet buzz. It worked for Gaga. This debut effort contains many gorgeous tracks like current single Starry Eyed, This Love (Will Be Your Downfall), The Writer and Wish I Stayed. Under the Sheets is most accessible of all and was a fitting first single, but had only lukewarm reception. A majority of the tracks are produced immaculately by up-and-comer Starsmith, who is currently at work on Kylie Minogue's next studio effort, so this is a sneak preview of what the sound of 2010 will be like.
Vocally, she fits right between Dolores O'Riordan and Björk. Frankmusik's influence on her during their time of collaboration is undeniable. Musically her sound is very relevant in this era of electro-pop. Being first and foremost a singer/songwriter and guitarist, Goulding pairs beautiful melodies with meaningful lyrics, and of course that femine flare. Particularly brilliant is the chorus to The Writer: "Why don't you be the artist/And make me out of clay/Why don't you be the writer/And decide the words I say".
Ellie Goulding's Lights will be released in Europe on March 1, 2010 and the following day in Canada - no word on a U.S. release date as of yet though it can be purchased as an import. Embrace her. Grade: A-
And also, don't forget to check out my good friend Monsieur Adi's remix of Starry Eyed, which is available as a free download. As some of you may recall, we worked together on my 2008 album Bodytalk and since then he has been lighting up the Blogosphere with his creations including this work of art.