Singer Jon Bellion will perform at the Bob: An inside look at his work

Jon Bellion performing in Cedar Park, Texas (2019-06-30)
Courtesy of Creative Commons/THE REVIEW
Bellion will take the stage at The Bob Carpenter Center on Nov. 19 for an 8pm performance.

Senior Reporter

Jon Bellion got his start working in the background on hit songs for the likes of Eminem, Rihanna and Jason Derulo, but an early career out of the spotlight gave way to an endlessly inventive discography bursting with creativity and excitement. Now, for the first time since a 2015 Firefly Music Festival performance, he’s returning to Delaware.

He will take the stage at The Bob Carpenter Center on Nov. 19 for an 8pm performance, the UD Programming Board announced last week.

Bellion’s first few mixtapes proved his ability to create infectious hip hop/pop-infused melodies laced with with deeply personal messages (“To My Future Wife” and “Human” among them), but it was with his debut album, “The Human Condition,” that he solidified a distinct sound and voice for his music.

According to Bellion, the album, which explores themes ranging from youthful spirit to God’s plans, owes much of its aesthetics to a Disney/Pixar influence. Artist David Ardinaryas Lojaya, whose work evokes feelings of hazy sunsets and dreamlike horizons, was brought in to provide illustrations for each track.

But beyond the surface-level characteristics, as Bellion chose the aesthetic direction mainly to get an opportunity to work on a Pixar film in the future, there’s a surprisingly apt comparison to be made between Bellion’s work and the studio’s filmography.

Bellion’s music layers in emotional deftness beneath waves of cleanly produced backing vocals and instrumentations. Much like the textural smoothness of Pixar films that gives a consistently energetic toylike quality to the animation, there’s a rounded-off quality to such songs as “Weight of the World” or “Fashion” in which each verse carries to the next over a layer of strings and keys without sharp jumps in tone.

Bellion’s latest project, “Glory Sound Prep,” continues the tradition of a Pixar-aesthetic in sound and look, providing the expected blend of dynamic production and emotional resonance. The continued experimentation with how each track is presented adds a degree of freshness to the album, which, like its predecessors, serves as a great proof of talent for an artist quickly rising in popularity.

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