For my sunshine album, I have taken a trip down memory lane to my middle school days. Though they were mostly full of insecurity and painfully overdramatic friendship drama, this album’s escapist aesthetic means that these songs can only be associated with happy summer days in London. The debut album reached number three in the UK album charts and is best known for its hit single ‘Pack Up’. The track was heavily overused by advertisers which has slightly tarnished its quality. However, I would argue that every track on the album holds its own.
The vocal style is a mixture of Corinne Bailey Rae and Lily Allen, with the kind of holiday nostalgia vibes that George Ezra is now famous for, heightened by sound bites of record players and old war songs. It is primarily a pop album but hints of jazz can definitely be found in the weighty pizzicato bass of songs such as ‘A Smokey Room’. Eliza Doolittle, now rebranded as Eliza, has recently completely changed her genre of music (I would highly recommend seeing what she’s been up to recently) so for me this album will be forever held in a capsule of simpler times.
The whole album is an invitation to sit back, relax and enjoy what’s around us
The songs themselves campaign for simplicity, with their anti-materialist, anti-establishment messages (‘Moneybox’ and ‘Nobody’ are especially motivational in this way) but there is also a childish playfulness to the whole collection, illustrated by the collage album cover inspired by the view from Primrose Hill. To fully enjoy this album, I would channel the aesthetic of Doolittle’s music videos: strap your speaker to the nearest bicycle or moped and head to the beach. The whole album is an invitation to sit back, relax and enjoy what’s around us. After all these exams and coursework deadlines, I can safely say we all deserve to do just that.