First gaining public attention back in 2015, before taking the entire world by storm in 2019 with her debut album When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?, the star named Billie Eilish is back with her latest work, Happier Than Ever.
Already a record breaking artist at 19 years old, her sophomore full-length album consists of 16 songs lasting for nearly an hour. Released on July 30, 2021 through Darkroom/Interscope Records, with the COVID-19 pandemic overshadowing most of us, this album also is highly influencing by such lyrically. In fact, with the lockdowns and slowed down world in general, Eilish had quite some time to sit down and reflect on her life. The result is a very personal, thoughtful album that is both soft and intimate at the same time.
Very much downtempo, mellow, and Jazz-influenced at points, Happier Than Ever is Pop music that will charm your ears while taking you on a journey through the mind of Eilish. It all starts with the thoughtful, slow opener “Getting Older.” However, you also have faster more danceable tracks such as “I Didn’t Change My Number” and the highly addictive “Oxytocin.” Then, offer a mix of both sides of the equation, “My Future” and “Goldwing” start out on a down beat, before a catchy rhythms set in. This is while “Goldwing” takes some influence from Gospel music, ”Billie Bossa Nova” offers another effective rhythmic track, and “Halley’s Comet” utilizes some beautiful piano work to create something deep and somber.
Moving forward, “Not My Responsibility” could be mistaken as binaural music with some spoken words to guide the meditative mind. This is before softly gives way to “Overheated” and the extremely thought-provoking “Everybody Dies.” Rounding the whole adventure is “Your Power,” that begins with some acoustic guitar strumming before a very lively vocal performance by Eilish, the Rap cut “NDA,” the irresistible “Therefore I Am,” the very personal title-track, and closer “Male Fantasy,” which could possibly be the most powerful lyrical piece of the entire album.
Overall, Happier Than Ever is a very diverse collection of songs, just like Billie Eilish seems to be. Each track touches on a different musical genre, and truthfully, she nails it. The best part of it all is the music comes very naturally, sounds sincere, and goes much deeper than many other Pop records out there today. Billie Eilish is a very thoughtful, talented artist with an extremely creative mind. Hoping she continues to explore sounds and styles even further in her musical career, Cryptic Rock gives Happier Than Ever 5 out of 5 stars.