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Billie Eilish’s Hit Me Hard and Soft is a Hit


Billie Eilish’s new album is 43 minutes and 50 seconds of pure musical genius. 

In early April, many, like myself, were shocked to see that a green ring circled Billie Eilish’s profile picture on Instagram. Upon further inspection, I found that I had been added to her close friends list. Sadly, this was not her trying to tell me that we were secretly best friends, but a marketing tactic. Later that week, after drawing everyone in with her close friends

Instagram stories she announced that her 3rd album, Hit Me Hard and Soft, would be released on May 17. 

The album has 10 songs, all of which were produced by Billie Eilish and her brother, Finneas O’Connell. The production is, to say the least, different from their previous work. The album heavily relies on synth sounds as well as acoustic guitar and bass. This creates a futuristic yet down-to-earth feel. Notably, the 3rd song, “Chihiro” has an acoustic, funk-inspired bassline that opens up the song and loops for the entirety of the piece, creating an abstract sense. This is especially apparent during the bridge when a 2010s-type synth overruns all the instruments except for the bass. These two instruments are rarely used in the same song, but Finneas finds a way to combine them to reflect Eilish’s lyrics.

The album only has ten songs, but when you listen to it all in order it feels like more. For example, in “L’amour De Ma Vie” the entire feel of the song switches from a mellow song that could probably be played in some jazz club in the 40s to an 80s rave ballad. This, again, is tied to her lyrics. The beginning of the song is about a past relationship that ended because Eilish and her girlfriend didn’t feel the same about each other. After the breakup, Billie’s ex moves on, and after another verse so does Billie. This is when the song switches. The lyrics move from yearning verses like “I said you, you were the love of my life. Did I break your heart?” to “You were so mediocre and we’re glad it’s over now.” This dynamic makes for an interesting and unique take on a classic pop music trope of a breakup song.

Overall, I think that Billie Eilish and Finneas did something special with this album. From the actual music to the album art, and even the sustainability policies of her vinyls and CDs, this album is a great change of pace in the pop music scene. I hope that she will continue to create groundbreaking art that changes the flow of stale genres.

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