A Wide Variety
There’s a whole lot going on in JJ’s newest album, V. The Swedish duo open the album with an eerie instrumental title track, “V,” that flows into “Dynasti,” which sounds so hopeful and ever so epic. V is flooded with these massive melodies and instrumentals. The listener can almost imagine the singer standing in an old stone hall, the orchestra behind them, singing up and out to god, or something.
In contrast to these classic musical themes, the lyrics can be surprising. JJ have no problem crooning their hip-hop influences over their epic instrumentals. It can be a bit confusing deciphering what is genuine sentiment and what is a goof. Perhaps that is the point, perhaps it is a lack of focus.
“When I Needed You,” for example, standing on its own, is a sad, serious song about a disappointed lover. But in the context of the album, with all of its less-than-sincere hip-hop references and weird bouts of auto-tune, “When I Needed You” sounds more like a jab at a corny indie lament. The auto-tune is another issue. JJ have pipes for days, yet they feel the need to use what lesser artists use as a crutch. And that crutch sounds more like a mosquito finding its way into your ear than T-Pain.
Overall V is worth the listen. It’s fun to catch the duo’s Drake reference, and when things get more hip-hop-y. JJ’s sadness can be a bit heavy-handed at times, but it’s that good kind of sadness that might just brighten your day.