Halcyon is the second studio album by Ellie Goulding, released on October 5th, 2012. Halcyon marked a departure from the folk-influenced Lights, with new elements such as Alternative Dance, Dream Pop, and Dubstep being brought in and all folk aspects being removed entirely. The sound is considerably Darker and Edgier than before, both lyrically and sonically, compared to the more upbeat Lights. To both critics and fans, Halcyon is considered to be a definite improvement over its already solid predecessor. Since release, Halcyon has sold over 1.5 million copies worldwide.
- "Don't Say a Word" (4:07)
- "My Blood" (3:54)
- "Anything Could Happen" (4:47)
- "Only You" (3:51)
- "Halcyon" (3:25)
- "Figure 8" (4:08)
- "Joy" (3:14)
- "Hanging On" (3:22)
- "Explosions" (4:03)
- "I Know You Care" (3:26)
- "Atlantis" (3:53)
- "Dead in the Water" (4:44)
- "I Need Your Love" (3:58) (bonus track)
UK Special Edition
- "The Ending" (4:41)
- "High For This" (4:49)
- "Ritual" (3:50)
- "In My City" (3:20)
- "Without Your Love" (4:19)
- "Hanging On" (featuring Tinie Tempah) (4:15)
- "Lights" (Pnau remix) (4:05)
An Updated Re-release titled Halcyon Days was released on August 23, 2013. All tracks from Halcyon are included, with the addition of eight new tracks to go with it, most notably "Burn" and "Goodness Gracious", bringing the number of songs to a whopping twenty-one.
- "Goodness Gracious"
- "You My Everything"
- "Hearts Without Chains"
- "Stay Awake" (feat. Madeon)
- "Under Control"
- "Flashlight" (with DJ Fresh)
- "How Long Will I Love You" (bonus track)
- "Tessellate" (3:02)
- "Midas Touch" (with Burns) (3:45)
I chase your tropes around a figure 8, I need you more than I can take!
- Alliterative Title: "Goodness Gracious"
- Bastard Boyfriend: "Only You" is about one.
- Broken Bird: Comes off as one in many songs.
- Capcom Sequel Stagnation: The original Halcyon was rereleased multiple times with new songs added, until Halcyon Days... which got this treatment too.
- Cover Version: Halcyon includes "Hanging On", originally by Active Child. Halcyon Days adds "How Long Will I Love You" as a bonus track, originally by The Waterboys. The deluxe edition of Halcyon Days adds "Tessellate", originally by Alt-J.
- Darker and Edgier: Compared to Lights, definitely.
- Deliberately Monochrome: The album cover is shot in black-and-white.
- Destructive Romance: "Goodness Gracious" is a light, upbeat sounding song describing one.
- Face on the Cover: A close-up of the singer's face.
- Loads and Loads of Songs: When combining the original with all of the deluxe edition tracks, Halcyon Days, and its deluxe edition, the song count is a whopping 31. Granted, three of them are covers, two of them of are the same song but with one remixed to include a wild rapper appearance, one of them isn't officially her song, and one is a remix of an older song. But still, that's a lot for a listener to take in.
- New Sound Album: Lights was a mix of synthpop, indietronica, and folk. Halcyon ditches the folk, and brings in alternative dance, dream pop, and dubstep. Justified, due to her boyfriend (at the time) being Skrillex.
- Non-Appearing Title: "Halcyon" and "Atlantis"
- Obsession Song: "Figure 8", and much of Halcyon is about this.
- One-Word Title: "Burn", "Halycon", "Joy", "Atlantis" and "Flashlight".
- The Power of Friendship: "Burn", which is the most straight-forward pop song on the album.
- Precision F-Strike: Not Goulding, whose language is clean throughout, but the remix of "Hanging On" featuring rapper Tinie Tempah features several instances of swearing provided in his guest verse.
- Self-Backing Vocalist: Constantly.
- A Wild Rapper Appears!: Tinie Tempah in the remix of "Hanging On".
- Title Track: "Halcyon", though subverted in a sense as it's a Non-Appearing Title.