In November 2015, 14-year-old Billie Eilish posted “Ocean Eyes,” a ballad written and produced by her older brother Finneas, on SoundCloud. The song was an overnight viral hit that eventually got a commercial release and went triple platinum. (The video was a Stereogum premiere in March 2016! We were at the start of this shit!) This success was the first step towards Eilish becoming a mainstream pop star in the years that followed. “Ocean Eyes” is a bit of a modern standard, and today we mean the Shamir version.
Shamir Bailey, who briefly flirted with pop celebrity himself, has never shied away from returning to pop star songs. A few weeks ago, he teased the release of his cover of “Ocean Eyes” on Instagram: “Have you ever said to yourself ‘I love” Ocean Eyes “by @billieeilish but wish it was a song haunted shoegaze emo rock? ”Today he succeeded.
Shamir has indeed transformed “Ocean Eyes” into a haunted shoegaze emo rock song. His version has sounding guitars and echoing drum machine beats and slow-building dynamics. He also has Shamir singing hard in this impossible wonder of a voice. Check out Shamir’s cover and Eilish’s original below.