Just last week, Billy Raffoul, a 22-year-old singer-songwriter from Ontario, released his debut single. The song, “Driver,” was inspired by the time Raffoul and his family picked up a hitchhiker. In a quote on his website, Raffoul explains that during a writing session in Los Angeles, he decided to put a metaphorical spin on the incident: ““We turned it into something a little more sentimental, in that maybe I’m not singing about someone being lost on the side of the road, but maybe someone lost in life who doesn’t know where they’re going or what they’re supposed to be doing.”
You can listen to the song here:
“Driver” has gotten attention from outlets like TIME, and it’s easy to see why. The song begins quietly, driven (no pun intended) by a simple, but atmospheric bassline and percussion. Then, as the instrumentation gradually gets more complex, the chorus comes along, and Raffoul’s gravelly, emotive voice shines. After he sings, “I wish I was the driver,” the song erupts in an explosion of larger-than-life guitars and “oh”s. Its general vibe is reminiscent of artists like Rag’n’Bone Man and Hozier.
If you like Raffoul’s sound, keep an eye out for his debut album with Interscope Records, which he is currently working on.