An Interview With: Ellie Goulding

Monday, 17 February 2014


'She's been the nations go-to girl next door since 2009.'
Is one of several unimaginative opening statements that are usually prefixed onto an article about Ellie Goulding, I'm so keen to avoid it I've actually ended up using it.
We get it, she gets it, Kate and Wills even got it- so I think it's about time we moved on from it.
Luckily, from the release of her second album Halcyon, it aids you to do exactly that.
Raspy vocals ripping up your past preconceptions, electro-pop twists burning away all whimsical memories of that John Lewis ad.
It's still Ellie, undefiled lyrically and full of movie-soundtrack worthy hooks, comfortingly captivating by all means, but this girl next door definitely doesn't live next to you anymore.

It can't be ignored, Ellie has had a no less than groundbreaking career, glittered with dates at the White House and a songstress invite to the royal wedding party, all done with an incredibly cultivated stance throughout.
But that was then, when Goulding's polite nod at pop was a cute and artful concussion to critics, an almost sugared novelty that the Hertfordshire born singer-songwriter proved undaunted by turning folky vocals on their head, a gallant strike at powering them through with electro leads.
Swapping sweet and innocuous for a fortissimo of cathartic heartbreak ballads alongside potential punchy singles, Halcyon allows an insight into a more vehement Ellie, ensuring you question the day you ever undersold her as merely a bashful beauty.

It's a Monday morning and Ellie wakes up at 9:30am, peruses her kitchen for something healthy to eat and then goes to work out.
I know that if I were her, I'd have other ideas as to how to spend my early waking hours as a chart topping success.
In fact, I'm certain it wouldn't be half as simple as how she describes it.
But that is the over all impression she leaves, despite teetering towards the superlative of her genre, she remains totally grounded.
So far grounded, she's almost incredibly normal, this self-effacing fille who's discovered herself amidst the show garments and under-cuts of fame, even four or so years in.
I break the hypothetical news that Friday night's major party has been cancelled and ask how she spends her night instead? Perhaps her morning routine was far too much of a lacklustre question for her to give the rock n' roll answer she's dying to dish out.
Nope.
"I'd go to the gym and then sit with a glass of wine in my flat and watch TV."
I think we could be friends, you know.

It could well be argued that my approach to this interview was poor journalism, querying the mundane and stereotypical is by no means exciting, but in this instance I think it's of grave importance that it's explored.
Does your perception of a good night in change when your face is on tomorrow's newspaper?
Do you become complacent of a sunny day in London when you know next week you could be in the decadent degrees of LA?
Ellie Goulding isn't about gossip, she's not a frontrunner for diva-like behaviour nor the opening gambit for a piece on controversialist actions, and this is exactly the point.
Who's on the guest list for her perfect imaginary head-line tour? Her friends.
Not Ryan Gosling nor Elvis Presley, there's no obtrusive desire to be anything more than who she really is, no outlandish suggestion or dream too unhinged, and it's admirable.
It almost dips back to who we were first introduced to, a quaint and quiet warbling blonde still bodes unseen within her, a concealed self reminder that illustrious events and model-perfect boyfriends don't change who you are.
Even if they do change your next album.

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