JJ Draper made his first appearance with his debut single ‘Zero Sum’ back in September. The East Londoner’s follow up single ‘In Visions’ is more radio friendly but every bit as striking.
More upbeat than ‘Zero Sum’, ‘In Visions’ is a well-crafted track weaving delicate acoustics on top of each other to create a symphony much larger than the individual parts. The song builds over a thick backdrop of bass and synth before skilful vocals, both commanding yet unobtrusive, join the collage of sound.
There is a fluidity to Draper’s work, as seen with his watery debut video, and his deep layers of sound are expertly crafted and mixed to create a track which carries the listener along with its fast paced current. It’s a track that can be enjoyed on a first listen, but continues to give more and more if the listener chooses to dive into its complicated under currents.
It’s hard to place Draper’s genre as he occupies a space where warm acoustic meets metallic electronic. Carrying echoes of Jeff Buckley, London Grammar and SOHN, It’s a sound that makes the idea of genres redundant.
‘In Visions’ is every bit as haunting and sophisticated as Draper’s initial release and demonstrates enough of a style to call his own, whilst drawing in the influence of contemporaries and a nostalgia for 80s synth pop. If his forthcoming debut album is more of the same, we can count ourselves lucky.
Words by Terri Witherden
Photo by Sean Wyatt