Born and raised in Gothenburg, Sweden, Johnson started playing bass at the end of high school and began making bedroom recordings, inspired by rock and pop classics from the late 70’s. Raw songs to capture the hallucinogenic hazy feel of everyday life combined with a romantic allure of late nights.
His skills on the bass guitar got him noticed in Stockholm, where he moved to, playing in the indie rock bands HOLY and Vacation Forever, which among other things acted as an opening act for Amason and Lykke Li on her European tour. Along with these collaborative projects, Johnson started releasing tracks as Jelly Crystal (“I named it after the disgusting jelly cake”), and in contrast to that dreaded concoction, his music goes down smoothly with its timeless and elegant soundscape.
Making his debut in 2017 with a self-titled EP, we got introduced to an artist whose audiovisual expression is epic in scale and authentic, often with a grandly cinematic sound. At that time people experienced Jelly Crystal as their well-kept secret that no one else had discovered yet, while Johnson described it as “Imagine an acid-fueled ABBA writing and performing the soundtrack to Titanic.”
2018’s single ‘Now Awake’ with Scott Walker and David Bowie as influences, Johnson revels in the kind of high-drama, high-art solo star role those musicians made their names with. Fully loaded, nostalgic and elegant old-school pop. In many ways, what’s significant with Jelly Crystal today.
Since his debut, Johnson has kept releasing a stream of hypnotic music, where each new release has its own character, and has quickly established himself as one of Scandinavia’s most exciting new artists. Through a number of acclaimed singles and collaborations with artists such as Shitkid, Kamohelo Khoaripe (Off The Meds), Sibille Attar and Man Tear.
During 2020, Jelly Crystal continued to break new ground and released the EP ‘Cool Cat’ including ‘If No One Sees It, It Didn’t Happen (feat Kamohelo Khoaripe)’, a song that brings thoughts to the 90’s jungle era, while ‘Another Day’ takes you somewhere else entirely and makes you think of The Beatles. Yet another example how songs that are completely different from each other, can work together perfectly – as long as they exist in the universe of Jelly Crystal. Later, he also released ‘Prison Wine (feat Man Tear, Art Alfie Remix)’ and ‘White Lies’ where The Line Of Best Fit stated “That’s where a Jelly Crystal song as at its strongest, a singer with real star power”.