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The Student News Site of Loyola University Maryland

The Greyhound

The Billie Eilish Experience gone virtual


Imagine being able to see into alt-pop star Billie Eilish’s mind, her writing process, her homelife, and her beliefs. During her livestream earlier this season, fans were able to do so an hour prior as part of the ticket they bought for her virtual concert. Eilish invited the audience into her world with trivia and tours of behind the scenes. 

While walking her dog, pre-recorded, of course, Eilish explains how each instrument she uses gives her a different sound and a different potential for songwriting. On top of that, something that always seems to shape her music is the fact that she and her brother, Finneas, work to make sure the lyrics can relate to both of them. And, from there, the pair is able to work on a melody that they show to their mom to see how she feels about the song.

The pre-show was also filled with fun facts about Eilish and her music. For example, her song “everything i wanted” was originally called, “nightmare.” Also, “everything i wanted” was her first song that ever had an outro, as usually her songs end definitively on the last word. Eilish did not stop there with the facts. She held a virtual trivia about herself and her family to put her fans’ knowledge to the test. 

Also during her pre-show, Eilish dropped a teaser for her upcoming interview with Vanity Fair, her fourth annual interview with them. She even went on to announce that she has a mini documentary/home film, titled “The World’s a Little Blurry,”coming in February of 2021.

Ultimately, I think the most important part of her pre-show was the use of her platform to get people to vote in the 2020 election. She even featured some familiar faces, like Lizzo, Alicia Keys, and Steve Carell (her “surrogate” dad, Eilish jokes), encouraging people to vote for a leader who will help transform America into a better place: a place where we fight for civil rights, global health, environmental problems, and more issues that plague our world and country.

But the most exciting part of her pre-show was her showing of  “Not My Responsibility,” a video of her undressing from her usual baggy clothes to reveal a tank top, and then a bra, as she sinks under a black liquid. This video went viral upon its debut of Eilish’s live show in March at her concert in Miami, Florida. “Not My Responsibility” was trending again on May 26, its official release date by Eilish on YouTube. She uses this video to represent how everyone always has an opinion about you and how they think you should change. Eilish’s message is that it is up to you to realize your body is yours to love, not theirs. She even says, in the video, “Is it not what you wanted?” as she realizes she can’t satisfy everyone with her music, clothes, and body.  

With a flawless set list, it was impossible not to sing along to Eilish’s virtual concert. Beginning with “bury a friend,” Eilish explodes onto the scene with red and black flashing lights as she jumps and dances around in her usual, eccentric manner. On stage with Finneas on keyboard and Andrew, her drummer, Eilish is able to bring the audience the full concert experience. Her setlist included more popular songs like “ocean eyes,” “bad guy,” “everything i wanted” and some of her ballads like “xanny,” “No Time To Die,” “when the party’s over” and “i love you.” Her scarier, upbeat songs like “bury a friend,” “you should see me in a crown,” “my strange addiction,” “ilomilo,” and “all the good girls go to hell” also made the set list. Eilish even performed one of her newer songs, “my future.”

Being Eilish, she made sure the special effects lived up to the expectations of her in-person concerts. Whether it be the giant spiders for “you should see me in a crown” or the giant shark that eats her at the end of “ilomilo,” it was hard to look away from such realistic CGI effects. For her iconic song “ocean eyes,” it was crashing waves behind her on huge walls. 

Eilish did not stop there with her excellent choice in special effects. While performing  “xanny,” they used a similar setup to the music video, including the same bench as the one she sits on during that performance. Then there was her performance of  “No Time To Die,” which took place in the iconic Bond tunnel which appears at some point during the opening of most Bond movies. Best of all were the CGI/special effects for “my future.” During this song,  the audience is shown Eilish in a cartoon-like, gray rainforest which soon becomes colorful as the tempo speeds up. 

Not only were fans able to still experience all the emotions that they would at an in-person concert, but they experienced the true Billie that they know and love as she engaged with the audience as much as she could. She asked questions, talked about how it felt to be performing again, and so much more as if at a real concert. And, the livestream was also an amazing experience for her. She said,

“Onstage is the only place I’ve ever felt like myself and like I belonged.” 

She goes on to tell her audience to not take life for granted because she learned the hard way that a life can easily be lost.  

She ended the show with “goodbye” as a credits song. Although she did not sing it, the duration  of the song was used to thank her crew, the audience, and the special effects team. Overall, it allowed the audience some time to let her amazing vocals and performance sink in at the end of an amazing experience. Needless to say, I cannot wait to be at her next in-person concert to experience THE Billie Eilish in real time.

And, the best part of the whole show was her hinting at a new album being released soon!

Featured Image courtesy of Nathan DeFiesta via Unsplash

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The Billie Eilish Experience gone virtual