Music / Ellie Goulding
They're gonna see us from outta space, outta space
Elena Jane "Ellie" Goulding is a British singer-songwriter. Born in 1986, she first started playing the clarinet at age 9, learned guitar at 14 and got into songwriting soon afterwards. After spending two years studying at the University of Kent, she took a gap year to focus on singing. Originally interested in making folk music, her meeting with electronic record producer Starsmith broadened her sonic horizons, and his influence was greatly left on her debut album Lights
Her follow-up album, Halcyon
, went farther away from the folktronica tag that was slapped on her first album, creating epic electronica soundscapes that were widely regarded as an improvement
from her first album. It also contained a few forays into Dubstep
, likely thanks to her then-boyfriend Skrillex
Ellie is a featured vocalist on:
Ellie Goulding provides examples of:
- Awesome McCoolname: Some might be surprised to learn that "Ellie Goulding" isn't a Stage Name.
- Breakup Album: Halcyon is believed to be inspired by Ellie's relationship with her ex, radio DJ Greg James.
- Broken Record: At about 2:16 in, "Lights"' name is repeated in the background fourteen times.
- Also, "Anything Could Happen".
- Cover Version: Ellie's been known to do quite a few of these, the most well-known probably being her rendition of Elton John's classic "Your Song". Additional ones include: "High for This" by The Weeknd, "Hanging On" by Active Child, "Tessellate" by Alt-J and "Midas Touch" by Midnight Star.
- Most of them don't deviate much from their originals, but her take on "Midas Touch" is drastically different, turning the upbeat 1980s Funk song into a moody Dubstep-flavored one.
- Darker and Edgier: Halcyon is much darker, lyrically and sonically, than Lights and its re-release were.
- Everyone Loves Blondes
- Gosh Dang It to Heck!: All of her songs are notably devoid of swearing. The closest she gets to doing so is in "Burn" which features the use of the word "hell". Averted in Iggy Azalea's "Heavy Crown", where she uses the word "bitch" to the surprise of some listeners. Finally averted once and for all in Delirium, which features her using light swearing like "damn" in songs like "Codes", while "Army" drops the first and only use of the word "fuck" in her music.
- Helium Speech: Implemented as electronic babble in "Only You".
- Hotter and Sexier/Three Minutes of Writhing: The "Lights" video. Ellie gyrating around in a short dress? Check.
- The visuals for the Halcyon album have definitely been a bit saucier, as well.
- The video for "On My Mind" takes it even further, with shots of Ellie's Toplessness from the Back, plus a few dresses with generous sideboob.
- Intercourse with You: "Love Me Like You Do", fitting since it was made for the Fifty Shades of Grey soundtrack.
- Ms. Fanservice: Has slowly been adopting this as part of her image, ever since Halcyon.
- Neoclassical Punk Zydeco Rockabilly: Her music is a mix of Pop, Electronic and Folk. Later ditching the folk in favor of Alternative Dance and Dream Pop.
- New Sound Album: Halcyon ditches the folk sound from Lights and brings in elements of Gospel, Alternative Dance, Dream Pop, and even Dubstep, likely thanks to her then-boyfriend Skrillex.
- Non-Appearing Title: "Halcyon" and "Atlantis".
- Obsession Song: Figure 8, and much of Halycon.
- Older Than She Looks: She's 28, but looks like she's only barely in her twenties.
- Precision F-Strike: Not herself, but Tinie Tempah provides the only cursing on Halcyon during the song "Hanging On".
- She uses the word "fuck" once in "Army".
- Record Producer: Starsmith produced most of Lights, while Jim Eliot was the main driving force behind Halcyon.
- Refrain from Assuming: "Guns and Horses" isn't called "All For You" or "I Would".
- Self-Backing Vocalist: Double tracks her vocals often.
- Sensible Heroes, Skimpy Villains: The attacking female soldiers in the "Guns and Horses" music video are wearing short shorts, wide-open jackets, and tall boots. Meanwhile, Ellie is clad in a buttoned blue flannel, black shirt, and jeans.
- Sexy Whatever Outfit: The "Guns and Horses" music video features dancers in sexy soldier costumes.
- Surreal Music Video: "Figure Eight" contains a chockload of symbolism and unclear imagery.
- Title Track: Subverted by "Lights", which was originally not featured on the standard edition of the album it named, but ended up on its re-release; it was subsequently released as a single and became a huge hit in the United States. Played straight on Halcyon, which is named after the track of the same name.
- To Become Human: "Human".
- A Wild Rapper Appears: Tinie Tempah on "Hanging On", a song that originally didn't have a rap verse.
- You Gotta Have Purple Hair: And she did for a good few months.
- Right now, it's currently pink.
Burn, burn, burn