What initially drew me to James Blake’s music was his impressive ability to create meaningful, but subtle progressions, most notably on a song like “The Wilhelm Scream.” Everything he has done since his breakout self-titled album has been impressive, and his new Before EP takes us back to his electronic roots, while showcasing his strong songwriting skills that he has built up over the years.
Before is a concise project, but quality-wise it is up there with Blake’s best work. Here, he delivers a collection of songs that can feel like ballads at certain points but also very dancey throughout. The production is compelling from start to finish, the vocals are hypnotizing, and the lyrics are quite pretty.
The title track ”Before” represents the range of this EP perfectly, featuring thumping bass and electronic synthesizers along with a beautiful refrain. James clicked the right buttons with this EP, and the result is a fresh and exciting project combining a multitude of sounds with a beautiful result.
Hopefully soon we hear a whole album that builds off of this sound, because it’s a winning formula. Check out this project on Spotify down below and all other streaming services here.