Ellie Goulding, her album’s alright..Posted: March 15, 2010
Miss Ellie Goulding has topped almost every list of ones to watch for this year and bagged herself a Brit award even before the release of her debut. So there is, of course, no pressure for the release of her debut album ‘Lights’.
The majority of ‘Lights’ is produced by relatively unknown, apart from the odd remix here and there, Starsmith who adds a glossy sheen to Goulding’s folky voice making what can best be described as a folktronica record. Opening with a quartet of excellent pop tracks which could all easily be massive hit singles for her. ‘Guns and Horses’ builds slowly layering drums and synths into a trancy middle eight and clap along refrain of “I’d do it all for you” which can only be described as pop gold. Lead single ‘Starry Eyed’ manages to sound folky, dancey and other worldly without going down the Owl City route of being so twee it rots your teeth. ‘This Love’ boasts the strongest chorus on the album closely followed by ‘Under the Sheets’ which is so Xenomania-esque you could actually be listening to the new Girls Aloud record, which is definitely no bad thing at all!
Now this is the point where the quality control begins to slip. ‘The Writer’ can be described in one word – Dido. This can only ever be interpreted as a bad thing when making an album. It’s better to make a bad album than a boring one. We’re now entering filler territory which is disappointing. ‘Your Biggest Mistake’ and ‘Salt Skin’ are pleasant enough but this is definitely B-side material as now the production drowns out Goulding’s raspy tones making the second half of this record an unsatisfying listen.
The exception being ‘Wish I’d Stayed’ the albums highpoint. Poignant lyrics about moving away from home coupled with stuttering vocals: “I don’t own my clothes but I own my mind, it’s not what you’ve lost but it’s what you find” make for a hauntingly beautiful listen.
You can’t help but feel that this record has been rushed released to capitalise on the hype surrounding her which is a shame as the best stuff on here proves she has the potential to be a great little popstar. So all we can hope for is a more consistent second album.