Wish I Stayed
Label: Polydor Records
If nothing else, Ellie Goulding's debut proves how translatable the concept of an icy blonde singer with a feathery gasp of a voice and a pleasant, polite beat is. Lights takes that core concept and runs it through frosty Euro-dance, otherworldly indie electro, mournful alt-rock (think: Cranberries), slightly creepy alt-rock (think: Kate Bush), even a wee bit of rom-com soundtrack-ready adult alt. A girl could get lost in all those stylistic twists and turns! Goulding, however, is a quietly compelling presence who subtly makes each song, each style bend to her wistful, winsome will.