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Album Review

Ellie Goulding, 'Lights'

March 14, 2011

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In theory, a slew of honors — including the Critic’s Choice prize at the BRIT Awards and a No. 1 debut record at home — should be a harbinger of great things to come for UK electro-folk import Ellie Goulding. Of course, trans-Atlantic success isn’t quite as easy to translate on a one-to-one ratio. Considering the company she is keeping on her new stateside label, Cherrytree — La Roux, Robyn, Feist — Goulding flutters into the expansive genre orbit of each touchstone throughout this rerelease of her UK debut. While the beat-driven production and percolating synth sparkle of “Starry Eyed’’ and “Animal’’ call to mind the former two’s strident dance-floor aplomb, Goulding’s crackling voice is capable of affecting a prostrate pose in the midst of the swirl that suggests the latter’s folk-tinged vulnerability. That’s most apparent on the stuttering synth-string thrum of “Guns and Horses’’ and a cover of Elton John’s “Your Song,’’ a sad number she somehow makes even sadder. Who cares if anyone else buys this, then? You’ll be glad you did. (Out now) LUKE O’NEIL

ESSENTIAL “Starry Eyed’’

Ellie Goulding plays at the Paradise Rock Club March 23.