New Sounds: Billie Eilish grinds out a fresh alt-pop perspective on ‘COPYCAT’

Based on title alone, Billie Eilish’s new single “COPYCAT” jumps off the screen. The 15-year-old future pop superstar has been bubbling up just under the surface of mega-buzz for a while now — we got lost in her mystical March single “Bellyache” back in March — and first got proper attention two years ago after posting her music to Soundcloud. Since then, well, let’s just say that the world of the young female pop singer is becoming a very crowded place. You can make the argument that copycats are everywhere.

Yet Eilish isn’t just uniquely poised, her sound is already separated from the pack. “COPYCAT” is the latest single off the California’s musician’s debut EP, titled dont smile at me and out August 11 via Darkroom/Interscope, and it finds the teen already going after the lack of originality in the modern world. The song deals with “people [who] do everything someone else does to the point that they are not even themselves anymore.” The all-caps in the song title are as intentional as the no-caps in the EP’s.

“I knew exactly what I wanted to write about,” Eilish tells Rolling Stone. “It’s really cliché of this to happen, because yeah, as you get more recognized and [are] more of a big deal, then people start copying everything you do. But if you’re going to do everything I do, what’s the point of even trying to be you, if you’re not even you at all?”

Yup, you just got sassed by a teenager.

Like Lorde when she first crashed the party a few years ago, Eilish appears wise beyond her years, and is already carving out her own role in a field that’s starting to become a tad repetitive. “COPYCAT” isn’t merely a fresh blast of “new,” it’s more like a slow grind of passion, a lurking pull towards the darker corners of alternative pop… a type of pop that’s just about ready to lose the “alternative” modifier as it absorbs the mainstream.

Riding this sinister wave, Eilish is also set to embark on her first ever North American tour, and it touches down at Sonia in Cambridge on November 19. The all-ages gig — fitting for a teen sensation such as this — will be one hot ticket, so score some in advance when they go on sale a week from today (July 21). Get full dates below.

Featured Billie Eilish photo via High Rise PR.

Billie Eilish North American Tour 2017:
October 4 – Constellation Room – Santa Ana, CA
October 5 – The Echo – Los Angeles, CA
October 7 – Rickshaw Stop – San Francisco, CA
October 9 – Holocene – Portland, OR
October 10 – The Crocodile – Back Bar – Seattle, WA
October 12 – Schubas Tavern – Chicago, IL
October 14 – The Drake – Toronto, ON
October 16 – Baby’s All Right – Brooklyn, NY
October 19 – Sonia – Cambridge, MA
October 20 – World Café Live – Upstairs – Philadelphia, PA
October 21 – Rock & Roll Hotel – Washington, DC