Billie Eilish has all the workings of an up-and-coming alt pop diva: she’s got an edgy sense of style and the sass to match. Her vocals are soulful and ethereal in the style of Lana Del Rey, but slightly sweeter and more innocent. She has the clever genre-defying production of Charli XCX. She was featured on the soundtrack of the Netflix show, 13 Reasons Why. She writes all of her songs with her brother, Finneas, who is also the sole producer on her debut EP, don’t smile at me. Oh, did I mention she’s 15?
Billie was recently honored as an Apple Up Next artist, but even before that has been recognized by other rising stars, including Kevin Abstract, who tweeted out praise with the link to her EP when it came out in early August. Neither she nor her family seems to be exploiting her age or pushing her to be anything she isn’t, which is refreshing. Billie and Finneas are just two siblings making music and having fun doing it.
don’t smile at me as a piece shows immense breadth and skill. The songs on the EP show maturity in both content and style far beyond her years. It is an easy and fun listen—everything pop should be. Billie will be playing at World Café Live in Philadelphia October 20th.