(Credit: Lars Crommelinck Photography)

From Tierra Whack to Liekeli47: 5 albums that changed Billie Eilish's life

Billie Eilish is an artist who has proved time and time again over the last couple of years that she is the definitive pioneering face in pop music. Everything the teenage sensation does is forward-thinking and progressive, whether this is the stylistic approach to music or her refreshing off-stage activities that have seen her become a voice for the voiceless. It should come as no surprise that Eilish’s favourite records are all from artists who are also firmly looking towards the future.

Eilish ruled 2019 and, before the pandemic struck, it looked as though 2020 was shaping up to be the year of Eilish again after kicking off the year with her sublime James Bond theme ‘No Time To Die’. Her debut album landed her icon status at just 18-years-old when she released the wondrous When We Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?. To reach the mountain top of pop music after only one record is a testament to an album, which re-set the bar for the genre and made Eilish the leading light for this forthcoming generation.

Speaking to Tidal around the release of the album, Eilish provided an insight into her record collection, and it’s safe to say she wasn’t harking back to the days of yesteryear. What she looks for in an album is an experience that she’s never heard before and, more specifically, exploring different ways in which people are experimenting with the album format and new approaches to music in general. Eilish isn’t in adoration of the old guard, and you shouldn’t expect this top five list to be anything like your typical favourite album lists.

Her first pick came from 7:AMP and his 2019 record Bleaupro. The album is only seven songs long and has a running time of just 18-minutes, which is a far cry from your typical album format. Commenting on the album, Eilish said: “That album, that project is like literally nothing I’ve ever heard. I feel like there’s so many elements that you would never think of and only 7 would think of them. He’s just on another level and I feel like most people don’t comprehend right now. I can really tell that he’s about to be doing some crazy shit, just wait.”

Her next pick comes from Tierra Whack and her album, Whack World, released in 2018. “One of the best albums ever,” Eilish began. “It’s just kind of genius all-round, every song is a minute long, the whole album is 15-songs and the whole album is 15-minutes long. It’s a 15-minute long short film but it’s basically a music video for every song on the album, it’s incredible. That’s a person who is completely in the future already. Like we’re all clueless and she’s like a million years in the future.”

Eilish then selected British rapper Crooks and his album, Dog Eat Dog World, he also provided vocals on her anthem, ‘Bury A Friend’. Speaking on her choice, she said: “That album is incredible. ‘Dreams’ and ‘Woof’ are two of my favourite songs.”

Her penultimate choice comes from Liekeli47 and her 2017 debut, Wash & Set. “Every song on that album, one after the other, they are all better than the last. She’s an artist that’s so… I don’t even have words. Everything she does is just sick. It’s just like every detail, every element in the world, everything she does is perfect,” Eilish praised.

For her final choice, Eilish couldn’t pick anybody else but herself and When We Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? Whilst most artists would shy away from giving themselves praise, Eilish is immensely proud of this body of work and is prepared to shout about it, who can blame her?

“Not just because it’s me, I feel like I’ve never felt like this but if I wasn’t me and I heard that album, I’d fuck with it. That’s a huge deal and I’ve never felt that way. It’s so rare to feel that way. I just think it’s so cohesive with itself and it all makes sense that its one piece and one piece of art, but, every single thing on it is all very one project, its also completely unique to it’s own body,” Eilish concluded.

Check out the playlist of Billie Eilish’s favourite albums, below.

Billie Eilish’s favourite albums of all time:

  • 7:AMP – Bleaupro
  • Tierra Whack – Whack World
  • Crooks – Dog Eat Dog World
  • Liekeli47 – Wash & Set
  • Billie Eilish – When We Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?