Billie Eilish is 17 years old, but has already been revising the rules of pop stardom for a few years now.
Her path to meme-generation ubiquity — if not mainstream radio saturation — has been a slow simmer that’s atypical for most young performers, who often fall victim to extreme virality, or extreme record label interference or extreme misguided enthusiasm.
Instead, Eilish has earned her acclaim quietly, and largely on her own terms. Her music is made with her older brother, a producer and songwriter, in the home they grew up in. It is deeply modern pop in sound, but also D.I.Y. in execution. Her debut full-length album, “When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?,” was released last month and went to No. 1 on the Billboard album chart with the second-largest sales week of the year so far, behind Ariana Grande.
Does Eilish portend a new direction for young aspiring pop stars? What is her relationship to the last decade or so of countercultural pop? Is she a classicist in edgy clothing?
On this week’s Popcast:
Joe Coscarelli, The New York Times’s pop music reporter
Meaghan Garvey, a freelance writer who recently profiled Eilish for The Fader
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