Top 10: Ellie Goulding

 Top 10: Ellie Goulding

With her new album Brightest Blue due tomorrow (sidenote – can you believe it’s been FIVE YEARS since Delirium? FIVE!), I’ve been rifling through Ellie Goulding’s discography and am delighted to report that her very best 10 singles are THUS:

10. Worry About Me
Brightest Blue
Single release: March 2020
UK chart peak: 78
I don’t mind telling you I really wasn’t too bothered about Worry About Me when I first heard it, but Christ, it’s such a relentless, relentless earworm. With Ilya producing and the likes of Savan Kotecha co-writing, is it any wonder?! An ice cold kiss-off to a once lusted-after someone (“Been jumping through hoops to get under you, but now I’m cool”), it’s one of my favourite Nu-Ellie releases.

9. Army
Single release: October 2015
UK chart peak: 20
On the heels of Love Me Like You Do, this ode to friendship ticked that same slow-build-to-a-firework-friendly-finale box very nicely indeed. WHEN I’M WITH YEOOOO!

8. Slow Grenade (with Lauv)
Brightest Blue
Single release: July 2020
UK chart peak:
I kind of reached a plateau with Lauv a while back, but this is a really neat little collaboration; his and Ellie’s voices are a perfect fit, and they both sound right at home in this sort of angstbop territory. It’s only been out for a week or two but I’m into it!

7. Under The Sheets
Single release: November 2009
UK chart peak: 53
Technically Ellie’s first single, predating even Starry Eyed, Under The Sheets still sounds so damn fine in 2020. It’s the perfect calling card for the folksy-singer-songwriter-meets-electropop-queen fusion that Lights did so well.

6. Lights
Bright Lights
Single release: February 2011
UK chart peak: 49
A very tepid success in the UK but, interestingly, an absolute monster in the US; Lights was never included on the first album’s original release – despite being the title track. It’s a stunner though: Ellie’s airy voice is a perfect match for this sort of production; soft, bubbly synths and big old drums.

5. Something In The Way You Move
Single release: January 2016
UK chart peak: 53
Ellie x Greg Kurstin was never going to end badly, and Something In The Way You Move is a euphoric, irresistible belter with a perfect serotonin rush of a bridge/chorus combo.

4. Love Me Like You Do
Single release: January 2015
UK chart peak: 1
Concocted by Ilya, Max Martin, Savan Kotecha, Tove Lo and Ali Payami (I mean honestly, good fucking grief), Love Me Like You Do swiftly became one of the definitive movie soundtrack ballads of a generation – and it didn’t even matter that the movie was pants. Complete with a big, bold pop chorus that shows how effective and anthemic a bit of repetition can be when it’s done right, it’s a solid classic.

3. Still Falling For You

Single release: August 2016
UK chart peak: 11
Another Tove Lo co-creation, Still Falling For You was another movie soundtrack gem – this time for Bridget Jones’s Baby – and despite not having the same ~blockbuster energy as Love Me Like You Do, I think I actually prefer it. The subtle introduction of those synths at 1:36?? Ugh!!!

2. Goodness Gracious
Halcyon Days
Single release: February 2014
UK chart peak: 16
Honestly what a SONG! An effervescent sugar rush of a banger, I’ve seen a few gays agreeing that this reminds them of their early, confused, slightly shame-drenched ~encounters (“I wanna hold you close but I never wanna feel ashamed”… “I can’t seem to stop calling it off, just to keep crawling to your arms”). Plus it’s called Goodness Gracious, which just feels Peak Ellie Goulding.

1. Anything Could Happen
Single release: August 2012
UK chart peak: 5
It’s quite something that you can get a feel for the exact stomach-churny angst this song is about just from a barrage of “eee!” noises, but such is the magic of Anything Could Happen. To be honest I’m still not sure I fully understand all of the lyrics, but I’m not sure it even matters: the final 45 seconds is truly one of my favourite blasts of pop music of all time. OF ALL TIME!!!!

Shaun Kitchener

Scriptwriter for the theatre and TV (currently Hollyoaks) and freelance entertainment ~reportage.