After a stunning debut EP “Remember Me” and a series of successful concerts in Denmark, ELBA suddenly disappeared in 2021. Stress and pressure got unbearable and she needed to take a break. Now the musician comes back stronger than ever, comfortable with herself and the direction her music has taken. Welcome ELBA’s debut album “Teardrops & Blind Spots”.

Sparking pop and a skater-boy attitude

What do you do when life gets unbearable? How do you cope with stress? Do you have ways of calming yourself and taking a step back when things get rough? Not everybody knows how to do it. ELBA went through a tough time but came out on the other side with many thoughts and conclusions. She decided to dedicate her debut album to talking about her experience. She gives pointers to all of us too, on how we can try and cope with stress, anxiety and overwhelming life situations. Smooth and direct lyrics are wrapping around unobvious melodies, sparking pop glitter with a skater-boy attitude. “Teardrops & Blind Spots” exhales rock’n’roll freedom and braveness, with great sophisticated pop vibes in the lead.

“Fix Me” stands out melodically and lyrically: It is a great reminder to all perfectionists out there to sometimes simply show your inner critic the middle finger. The song has a solid Avril Lavigne vibe buzzing underneath a neat guitar-pop melody. Opening “Fading in & Out” gently touches on the edges of R’n’B, while reminding us we are not alone in experiencing FOMO (“fear of missing out”). “Meryl Streep” wonderfully captures the pressures of being seen as a “perfect” person, when the anxiety and expectations are difficult to deal with. The song’s melody flow has a pinch of melancholy. And it underlines that the glamour we see in others’ lives is very often misleading. In fact, they struggle with emotions, problems and stress the same way we do.

A helping hand for when you’re drowning

ELBA doesn’t leave us just with warnings and recollections of tough experiences. She gives us space to take a deep breath and look for shelter, so we can rest when the thunderstorm of life hits too hard. On her debut album that shelter is “Greenhouse”. This gentle ballad almost makes you see the quiet space filled with plants and the atmosphere of relief. At the end of the record, we hear two songs that scream Danishness to me. The melancholy, calm acceptance and hope coming out of realizing what we can and cannot influence are strong in “New Beginnings” and “The Weight”.

On her debut album, ELBA sounds free. She’s also in control of her own story and the way she wants to share it. The songs flow through the listener and we can feel that this artist is truly in charge of her music. She is vulnerable on her own terms. Confident, while allowing herself to stumble and make mistakes. Honest about herself with all the glamour and all the imperfections. Musically, “Teardrops & Blind Spots” is as eclectic and playfully unpredictable, as modern pop music can be. Enjoy the time spent with ELBA. And if you feel like drowning in life, may you find not only comfort, but a helpful hand pulling you out of the water when lither debut record.

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