Review: Ellie Goulding's 'Halcyon'

Ellie Goulding performs at the Third Annual ELLE Women In Music Event at Avalon on April 11, 2012 in Hollywood, California.

Story highlights

  • Ellie Goulding first emerged as an artist in 2010
  • "Halcyon" is her second album
  • She does a collab with Scottish rave-op master Calvin Harris
Ellie Goulding emerged in 2010 with a one-two punch: first, her (still-rising) helium-voiced hit "Lights," then, an elegant read of Elton John's "Your Song" that led to a gig at Prince William's wedding. As Cinderella stories go, it's a good one. But as a 25-year-old adept who dresses rave-y hooks in folk-rock tunefulness and art-pop filigree, Goulding earned her glass slippers.
"Halcyon," her second LP, pumps up her sound as befitting a court musician. The single "Anything Could Happen" has the London Community Gospel Choir swooping around staccato piano and club beats; elsewhere she's multitracked into a one-woman choir. If the songwriting doesn't quite measure up to U.K. art-pop divas like