All things considered, hip-hop is the last thing you'd expect out of Australia. The country's pop and progressive rock scenes boom, but you never really hear many rappers coming out of there. Drapht shows us Americans not only that hip-hop isn't something exclusive to us, but that others can thrive in it.
Already on his third album, Drapht has slowly been carving his way into Australia's mainstream. His success is rightfully claimed; his new record is something you don't hear often in hip-hop. Seven Mirrors is an audacious record in all of the right ways. The lyricism of Kendrick Lamar meets the fun instrumentals of Macklemore & Ryan Lewis. How can you not dig this sound?
If you're skeptic, just listen to the first full track on the record, 'All Love': It has confidence, style, and lots of love. His vocal delivery doesn't try and be gimmicky or something he wishes it could be (in American terms, he's not trying to sing like a pop star). The instrumental is simply fun with blaring trumpets throughout and twinkling pianos in other parts. There's several tracks where you can tell the purpose of them is to have some fun. 'Bad' featuring Nat Dunn is an example of this; it's a fun track, and you can tell that's what he was going for. Dunn delivers some fiery vocals on this track, too.
This album isn't afraid to show some character. It's a very diverse record in terms of the different styles Drapht blends into his music. 'Another Juliet' sounds like he's channeling his inner Lin-Manuel Miranda. Hilltop Hoods help add some funk and personality to 'Don Quixote'. Earlier on the record is Katie Noonan adding crooning and smooth vocals to the dramatic and somber 'Raindrops', as well. 'Asylum' has some blues rock vibes going on it, sounding more like a subtle acoustic track by the time it ends. The last song on the record is the brilliant 'Odds' with Brendan Welch - a song about battling cancer. It's a truly heartwrenching track and perfectly executed in its performance.
There are some lesser moments on the record, sadly. All of the interludes are just unnecessary; the opening one just seems cocky, 'Scumday' just makes you feel bad, 'Again' is sweet but forgettable, and 'Midnight At The Hospice' seems too dark and odd considering how the next track goes, in a completely different mood. There are some tracks that are a little too left field, too. 'Oikophobia' is the fear of feeling at home; and titling it your song seems too extreme. You get the message, but it's almost overdoing it.
Listening to Drapht really gives you an idea of how different hip-hop can be construed across the globe. This is true for all genres, really. But Drapht is a shining example of how being yourself can lead you to real success. Seven Mirrors is a fun and diverse album full of life - hip-hop today is so sex and money oriented in America, and the aesthetic of it is slowly becoming overdone. It's refreshing to hear hip-hop in this form. It's not every day you hear something old sound so new.
Favorite Tracks: All Love, Odds, Another Juliet
Least Favorite Tracks: Scumday, Mexico, Again
Rating: 77 / 100