Billie Eilish’s ‘When I Was Older’ Is Intriguing Alt-Pop Inspired By The Movie ‘Roma’

Billie Eilish and the 2018 movie Roma perhaps doesn’t sound like the most natural pairing in the world. One is a 17-year-old pop musician, and the other is a critically acclaimed Spanish language movie about a Mexico City maid in the early 1970s. That said, the two actually go great together: Eilish just released “When I Was Older,” a new song that’s inspired by the movie, and it’s pretty neat.

The song begins with eerie instrumentation before Eilish’s Auto-Tuned vocals come in and the song gets punctuated by some bass and simple percussion, all of which makes for a compelling track. To be clear, the song is not part of the movie’s soundtrack at all, it was simply inspired by the film. In fact, the song’s full official title is “When I Was Older (Music Inspired By The Film Roma).”

Eilish sings on the chorus, “When I was older / I was a sailor on an open sea / But now I’m underwater / And my skin is paler than it should ever be.” This lyrics is seemingly inspired by a line from the movie: A child who can remember his past lives says in the film, “When I was older I used to be a sailor, but I drowned in a storm.”

Listen to “When I Was Older” above.