Review: biLLLy – ‘Confused Lover’

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Who is he? Why does he sound like the '80s? How is his cover artwork so damn cool? All valid questions. Now, let's see if we can answer any of them...

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With a very English sound and sensibility, ‘Confused Lover’ dabbles heavily in the funky grooves and smooth melodies of ’70s art-rock groups like 10cc and Supertramp whilst also channeling the glitchier elements of ’80s synth-pop groups like Japan and Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark. Why is that, I wonder? Perhaps it’s to do with the fact that biLLLy clearly enjoys meddling in the sonic jiggery-pokery that synthesisers offer; perhaps it’s that he has a deep respect for and historical understanding of the British New Wave; or perhaps it’s simply that it sounds awesome. Either way, it makes me very haPPPy that he does what he does.

On a visual note, he seems to have a reclusive aversion to showing his face. Both his Facebook and SoundCloud profiles feature a cropped neck-shot from one of the mere two photographs available of him (the other, featured above, is shockingly full-facial). To further this Sia-esque mystique, the four stand-alone tracks on his SoundCloud each feature an edited photograph of his head against a coloured background with a gaping hole where his face should be and a randomly intruding squiggly line. Scroll down and you’ll see what I mean. If you happen to notice an eery similarity between the image above and the artwork below, it may not merely be déjà vu. The latter has had said artistic techniques applied to the former, resulting in the gorgeous puzzle-piece cover that we see before us.

Curious to find out more about the London enigma? Then check out his interview with PressPLAY OK, although even that doesn’t give away much. He’s a man of few words, clearly. As fresh-faced and obscure he may be, biLLLy’s music already holds all the laconic charm and suave sophistication of an artist more advanced in both years and experience than he, and so it is with great excitement that I look forward to his next release, whatever it may be.

‘Confused Lover’ is out now via Sweat Ent

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A curmudgeonly Music student who likes to spend his days watching an obscene number of films whilst growing increasingly grumpy with the noise-mongers around him. He has on occasion also been sighted out and about performing with his band Nine Ace Deck, for whom he sings and writes songs. And when not doing either of the above, he takes great pleasure in composing music for the short films of the Wessex Films Society. Make sure to like his Facebook page (above right) to keep up with all the latest ramblings...

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