Artist Spotlight: ELI

February 17, 2023

One of the metrics of a great artist is their ability to reinvent themselves through sound. It’s a fine balance between establishing self  while also exploring the diversity and capability of musical intonation. ELI is one such artist. So early on in her career, her sound traverses multiple planes, transporting listeners through a series of experiences. Her most recent show is testament to that. Amidst an intimate gathering in South London, Eli took to stage and across 30 minutes, explored  the span of alt genres.

Fresh off her most recent track, Too MuchEli is establishing herself as an artist to remember. Rooted in community, an ELI performance is like being in the warm embrace of long separated friends, engaged by the excitement of catching up on the intricacies of small stories. There is a depth in Eli’s vocals that captivates her listeners, a reminder that music is a fluid thing. Too Much feels like an adventure, a genre fluid track that refuses to be one thing. I Rule is much softer, leaning heavily into its accompanying instruments. On guitar, Eli let’s loose with powerful guitar riffs. On drums, Mike embodies the rockstar feel of the track and Greg leans into the soothing synths of the track.

Alt music is not new. Afropunk is rooted in the resistance and community of the Black punk. While there has been a shift in perception and the mainstream, Black alternative artists are still finding their way. Alt is an amalgamation, as ELI says. She is indie, she is Afro pop, she is soulful. ELI is a unique blend of the musical experiences that reflect her heritage and environment as a London based, Nigerian, Ivorian singer, song-writer and producer. All these experiences and sounds are cultivated in her musical journey and all roads have led to this point. 

This year ELI would like to build more of a community. Find more of the communion that was lost in the pandemic while being a reflection to and of people that look like her. As an alt artist, ELI is breaking the rules of sound and creating something familiar yet entirely new. This is the world of ELI and there’s so much more to come.