Ellie Goulding Delivers Well-Rounded Pop on Third Album ‘Delirium’ 


Ellie Goulding, Delirium © Interscope

Ellie Goulding • Delirium • Interscope • Release Date: November 6, 2015

Ellie Goulding’s star has elevated stateside – to some extent. After having hits with “Lights,” “Anything Could Happen,” and “Love Me Like You Do,” you’d think that the eclectic British pop singer would have totally blown up. That’s not the case, particularly considering so-so first week prognostications for her third studio album Delirium. Despite potentially underwhelming sales, Delirium features plenty of bright spots.

“Aftertaste,” the set’s first full-length tracks kick things off energetically and enjoyably, though it’s not necessarily a homerun. “Something In The Way You Move” bests it, being a fun record, despite being set in a similar situation to Florence + The Machine’s “What Kind Of Man.” Ultimately, the relationship’s dysfunctional and not going to work out, yet Goulding is into him and “can’t quit him.” Her plight is our pleasure – is that totally schadenfreude or nah? “Keep On Dancin’” follows, keeping things rolling right along as Goulding’s vocals shine, not to mention the top-rate, ‘danceable’ production work.

“Codes” arrives a few tracks later, hella catchy from a first listen. Pop with an urban flare, “Codes” sounds as fresh and relevant as anything released in 2015. The best facet – the chorus by all means: “Stop talking in codes, stop talking in codes / let me know what’s up, can’t do it no more / I need a love to celebrate.” “Love Me Like You Do” reappears from Fifty Shades of Grey as potent as ever. A huge hit, what else is there to say about the well-rounded pop record.   Sandwiched in between “Codes” and “Love” is “Holding On For Life” which sports one of the best grooves of Delirium.

There are plenty of other treats, some which are good without necessarily distinguishing themselves as memorable or elite. “Army” doesn’t have that problem, ranking as the biggest surprise of the effort. Why is “Army” so enthralling? The folksy sound initially is completely different from the more pop-centric songs. Sure, “Army” evolves into a big-time pop song, but the contrast easily ranks “Army” among the elite.

Overall, Delirium is an enjoyable pop album. It by no means reinvents the wheel, but as referenced above, there are more than enough worthwhile moments. Again, it’s too bad Goulding is still underrated stateside – she makes sound pop music.

Favorites: “Something In The Way You Move,” “Keep On Dancin’,” “Codes,” “Love Me Like You Do” and “Army 

★★★½

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