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Billie’s big brother: Finneas convinces as an “optimist” – dpa

Berlin (dpa) – Finneas Baird O’Connell – the name doesn’t (yet) mean much to many. But it gets exciting in connection with stars like Justin Bieber, Halsey, Demi Lovato and above all Billie Eilish.

The 24-year-old accompanied them all musically – and even helped Eilish to multiple Grammy fame and two million-seller albums in the background.

Finneas, the short version of the Irish-born name, is Billie’s older brother and her masterful sound tinkerer. Now he is stepping out of the shadows with his first full studio album, after some singles and EPs that have already been positively received as well as eight (!) Own producer Grammys. «Optimist» is a 13-track record that presents the Californian as a highly talented singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist.

Finneas may not be as cool as its four years younger sister, the female «role model» of her generation. His first big appearance as a solo artist is definitely impressive.

The pieces “A Concert 6 Months From Now” and “The Kids Are All Dying”, inspired by the Corona Lockdown, at the beginning, several beautiful piano ballads in the middle of the album or the final “How It Ends” shine with strong melodies and the finest vocals. This young man has style – and a knack for pop music as complex as it is catchy, somewhere between the early Coldplay and Justin Vernon alias Bon Iver. Yes, with Finneas even autotune voice effects like in “The 90s” don’t sound too annoying.

“When you’re a producer, you never take enough time to work on your own music. Unfortunately, no one orders me around telling me to finish my album – except for myself, ”says Finneas. But in April he pulled himself together “and concentrated on my music”. It was worth it.

«Optimist» could be one of the surprises of this overcrowded pop autumn – even without the sensational effect of his sister and the subsequent worldwide Billie Eilish hype.

© dpa-infocom, dpa: 211012-99-566745 / 3

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