Music Corner

Donald McElveen, Staff Writer

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Album: When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? By Billie Eilish
Rating: 4 ½ stars

By now if you haven’t heard of Billie Eilish, you’ve been living under a rock. Between the memes, her viral horror-esque videos, and her questionable fashion taste, it seems hard to escape Eilish, especially considering how fast her fame occurred. But underneath all the hype and the persona, there is an artist; one who has such a unique take on music it’s hard to not pay attention.

The first thing you need to know about WWAFAWDWG? is that it’s weird. Not in a Bjork way where you have no idea what’s going on, but still unconventional. Musically there are so many distinct elements from many different genres going on with each song that you can’t exactly pinpoint the genre. And the funny thing is, even with all the “weirdness,” the album really works. Even the sample scenes from The Office are kind of charming. Standout tracks include the semi-controversial “wish you were gay,” “iloveyou,” and “8” (which is easily one of the most creative songs to come out in 2019). Billie Eilish has done something incredibly unique by creating a piece of work that is not only fully realized but original – all while being just 17. Pop music will definitely be patiently waiting for her next project.

Album: Free Spirit by Khalid
Rating: 4 stars

Khalid has had an explosive three years. Since the release of his breakout single “Location,” it seems impossible to not hear about Khalid. His debut effort American Teen was a breath of fresh air for the pop/R&B landscape, and it had fans and critics alike eagerly waiting for more. And then, towards the end of last year, he unexpectedly released the EP Suncity, who’s melancholy sound was much more soulful than his previous work, and it did nothing but build the hype for his new album Free Spirit.

Like the piece that came before it, Free Spirit is a much more refined sound than what was on American Teen. Khalid is not only more mature but also more vulnerable on this album, which is expected of someone leaving their dewy-eyed teen years behind them. Sonically, this album is slower and more melodic than American Teen, and even the more poppy ventures have a mellow feel about them. While it’s refreshing to hear Khalid refine his sound, it can drag the album out a bit. Standout tracks include “Heaven,” “Hundred,” and the title track “Free Spirit.” Overall, Free Spirit is a valiant sophomore effort, and one that points to a very interesting future for the singer.

Album: When I Get Home by Solange
Rating: 4 ½ stars

Solange has had a very interesting career in the music industry. While most know her solely as “Beyonce’s sister who sings sometimes,” she has spent a lot of time developing a career of her own. While she has been behind some of the biggest acts in the industry (like her sister), her 2016 album A Seat At The Table proved that Solange was a force to be reckoned with in the R&B community, and had something unique to offer to the music industry. When I Get Home is no different.

One of the most recognizable qualities in Solange’s music is her slow, dreamy vocals and production, which are on full display on this album. While this formula can get repetitive at times – especially over an almost 20 – track work – Solange finds a way to keep the listener engaged even through the slowest parts of the album. While A Seat At the Table felt more like a statement delivered through music, When I Get Home is more of a look into Solange herself, and the rawness is much appreciated. Standout tracks include “Stay Flo,” “Sound of Rain,” and “Almeda.” Listening to When I Get Home is an experience, and it’s one that really only Solange herself can bring.

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