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Eloise finally delivers Drunk On A Flight, a blissful pop-infused jazz record for the ages

"Drunk On A Flight"

Release date: 14 April 2023
Eloise - Drunk On A Flight cover
11 April 2023, 09:00 Written by Adam Wright

Eloise’s gentle and jazz-tinged bedroom pop has provided eloquent observations of everyday life since 2019; her sound slotting in comfortably amongst the London-based scene that bred Raye, Mahalia, and Lianne La Havas.

Now, after four years of artistic development, the 23-year-old has landed on solid ground for her first full-length album. Drunk On A Flight develops her sonic palette and makes a defining mark on the scene she emerged from.

The record compiles a plethora of experiences – both lived and observed – of romantic relationships. The lo-fi neo-jazz of previous efforts has been largely fleshed out with more pop-influenced tones, yielding a broader, and often more uplifting, sound.

Where many albums of this kind centre around a dominating mood, be it heartbreak, joy, or other, Drunk On A Flight sees Eloise adopting multiple emotional states, speaking through various protagonists and moulding a well-rounded examination of human emotion. Explorations of guilt ("Pretend"), longing ("Make It Better") and confusion ("Friends Who Kiss") are foregrounded by frank lyricism, creating a sense of relatability throughout.

Many songs revolve around the search for meaningful companionship. “Therapist” points to a lack of satisfaction (“I don’t want to talk about your mummy issues if that’s alright”) as does the synth-rich “Make It Better” (“You’ve been gone at dinner parties looking like a ghost/drinking cheap champagne and flirting with the host”). Giving the impression that Eloise is finding herself in flux, yearning for something that remains elusive.

The record’s most developmental musical moments come from “Giant Feelings” and “I Take It Back” which both feature a dexterous layering of synths, guitars and drum beats to create captivating soundscapes. Similarly, the 90s yearning “Vanilla Tobacco” holds the attention with layered vocals over hip-hop beats. Not devoid of more delicate moments, we also see Eloise's vocals laid bare; “In Another Year” features little more than vocals atop smokey piano chords, providing the album’s most exposed moment.

Through moulding relatable characters, Eloise is able to appeal en masse, and the engaging lush soundscapes – shaped by producer, Conor Albert – give the tracks an added warmth. Eloise is an artist that’s been an exciting prospect for some time, and Drunk On A Plane has delivered what we were all hoping it would.

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