Here's the thing about Billie Eilish.
She brings a minimalism and an (almost) innocence to pop music that we haven't heard in a while, if ever. Each and every generation has their own respective matriarch. From the iconic movements of Cyndi Lauper and Madonna in the 1980's to Whitney Houston and Mariah Carey as queens of the 90's, we found our way to pop princesses Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera at the turn of the century. Eventually, pop music evolved into the irreplaceable form of Lady Gaga, who truly catapulted pop music into the next millennium.
Please try to argue with me.
"Techno" music was not considered a popular genre before Gaga and once she brought on the incredibly original sounds through her own musical genius and Nadir Khayat's gift to cultivate her natural sound, pop music was no longer just a synthesizer and a drum kit to another talentless face that Hollywood tried to sell to the world. Once Gaga entered the scene, everyone tried to follow suit. Beloved pop icons who earned their place in the industry before her, started altering their own sounds to match the trendiness of what pop music was becoming---what Gaga unintentionally MADE it become.
Billie Eilish bares a shocking resemblance in just that... Her sound is shocking. When you listen to Billie Eilish for the first time, you feel like you are tucked in Alice's apron pocket as she falls down the rabbit hole to Wonderland. Time stops. Your intrigue is sparked. But that is where it should end. Don't bite the cookie even if it says "Eat me."
Lady Gaga did many incredible things for the pop music world and she made artists push harder to find their own unique sound, but Billie Eilish manipulates production value as artistic value. 5 part harmonious versus with nothing but a few pops from a sound board and drum kits to follow? Call me old-fashioned, but where is the music in that? Minimalism is a treasure, but why are we giving someone so much credit for being "different and unique" when she is only using the many perks of Ableton to achieve this process? She's not even the mastermind behind all of it. Her brother, who goes by the name FINNEAS, (gag, can we please just have real names.... why does everything have to be iRoNiC like rain on your wedding day?) deserves the majority of the credit.
FINNEAS has taken his little sister's subpar voice, layered it in harmonies and reverb, with a few stings of a drum pad to make you think it's music and it's different. It's. NOT. We need to stop idolizing people who thing that their production software can carry their weight throughout their careers. Listen to "Lost in Japan" by Sean Mendes and Zedd if you think I'm being biased towards modern pop music. Brilliant modern pop music.
The bass line is completely harmonious with Sean's voice and they are not relying on production value to carry them throughout the song. It bops. It tells a story. It evolves. MUSIC.
Don't let the "difference" of Billie Eilish brainwash you into thinking that's the direction music is going. It's shouldn't be. We don't just need sound. It's 2019 and no matter what, we still need music.