Irritated Billie Eilish slams stars like Taylor Swift for releasing ‘wasteful’ multiple vinyl versions

A photo of Billie Eilish and an inset of Taylor Swift
Billie Eilish slammed "vinyl variants," embraced by artists like Taylor Swift, as "wasteful."
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What was Billie Eilish made for? Environmental activism, apparently.

In an interview with Billboard, the singer, who recently won her second Oscar for her song “What Was I Made For?” from “Barbie,” denounced the growing music industry practice of releasing multiple “vinyl variants.”

A vinyl variant is a different pressing of the same album with slight alterations, such as multiple color options or even including additional tracks. Offering several versions encourages super fans to buy all of them. Taylor Swift’s album “Folklore,” for instance, had eight vinyl variants.

Some have criticized the move as a cash grab. But Eilish, 22, said the trend is downright “wasteful.”

Taylor Swift’s “Folklore” had eight vinyl variants. Getty Images for TAS Rights Management
Taylor Swift’s “Folklore” had eight vinyl variants. Getty Images for TAS Rights Management

“We live in this day and age where, for some reason, it’s very important to some artists to make all sorts of different vinyl and packaging,” she said. “[It] ups the sales and ups the numbers and gets them more money and gets them more.”

The singer continued: “I can’t even express to you how wasteful it is. It is right in front of our faces and people are just getting away with it left and right, and I find it really frustrating as somebody who really goes out of my way to be sustainable and do the best that I can and try to involve everybody in my team in being sustainable — and then it’s some of the biggest artists in the world making f–king 40 different vinyl packages that have a different unique thing just to get you to keep buying more.”

Eilish’s “Happier Than Ever” also had eight variants, but made out of recycled materials. Billie Eilish
Eilish’s “Happier Than Ever” also had eight variants, but made out of recycled materials. Billie Eilish

Like “Folklore,” Eilish’s “Happier Than Ever” also came in eight variants, but was made out of 100% recycled black vinyl and reused scraps for colored variants, she said.

“It’s so wasteful, and it’s irritating to me that we’re still at a point where you care that much about your numbers and you care that much about making money, Eilish added.

“And it’s all your favorite artists doing that s–t.”