Daydream and Dance to Dreamer Boy's Debut Album, 'Love, Nostalgia' [Q&A]
If ever you need an escape from the confines of reality, then Dreamer Boy's debut album Love, Nostalgia, is the multi-dimensional narrative of summer romance and teenage dreams. A wavy time capsule that transports you from 90's MC-808s to the woozy dream pop of 2019, Zach Taylor's Love, Nostalgia is the definition of chill. The cool factor is so real, you'll likely find yourself daydreaming and dancing at the same damn time. The whole album is a counterbalance, pairing overly-composed production and MC talk with full frontal instrumentals and falsettos you only wish you could hit. What has surfaced is the lovechild of summer love intertwined with friendship under the roof of one "beautiful" house.
Taylor crowns it as "cowboy pop," paying homage to the roots he hammered down in Nashville, where he went to college and holed up with best friends - one being Bobby Knepper, the sole producer of the album. Opening Love, Nostalgia in a theatrical ensemble, the vibe is relentless on "Simple" featuring Savanna Dohler and Jamie. The pops and grooves give way to the landscape of the whole album as Zach's lyrics resonate, "Love don't have to try so hard." Jerked into a Nashville funk, "Lavender" transposes the album - cleverly positioning Zach's confidence as he MC's us through the track.
Little moments of "cowboy pop" garnish Love, Nostalgia through Knepper's use of clever instrumentation and Zach's style and sass also exuding through. Infused with a kaleidoscope of summer influence, "Fever" later captures that fickle nature of summer love perfectly, "Jumpin’ into the water / Runnin’ into the fire / In the heat of the summer / Holdin’ on to my lover"'
Fresh from a 13-stop tour with Still, Woozy, we got to chat with Dreamer Boy himself. For a glimpse into what you're in for, Zach details friendship and love on his debut album, Love, Nostalgia.
OTW: How did your circle of friends play a part in the creation of your album, Love Nostalgia?
Dreamer Boy: So we live in this house that is a beautiful green color on the top and then a white color on the bottom - it looks unreal, like a fake house. We all moved in there two years ago, me and Bobby - who produced my whole album.
OTW: In Nashville?
Dreamer Boy: In Nashville. We moved in together two years ago and then eventually Adam, photographer and creative guy, moved in, and then Clark, my manager, moved in. Everyone lives in that house now, and I think through the community that was built around this house and creating, [the album] just became a product of [it]. My friends are the cornerstone of Dreamer Boy. What we want to kind of push and encourage people who see us and follow what we're doing, is that if they get their friends around them, they can do this too. Like, they can go on tour, make an album, or whatever. I think long story short, the friendship and the bond between the people who are working on this project is the most important.
OTW: So, that's where Dreamer Boy came from?
Dreamer Boy: Basically. Dreamer Boy is me. I have always been this romantic, kind of nostalgic. I came up with the name Dreamer and then Dreamer Boy kind of came after we were just kind of fumbling through options and stuff. I think it's cool cause it's kind of immature, it's like Dreamer Boy, it's like this character that's more so fun and lighthearted. I don't have to take it too seriously, but I can still use it to [portray] whatever message I want. It feels like a really appropriate medium for me.
OTW: Can you elaborate on how you were able to redefine the concepts of "summertime" and "teenage romance" on your own terms?
Dreamer Boy: Yeah. So, our album Love, Nostalgia - and I always say our album cause it always feels like more than me. So our album, Love, Nostalgia is a story of a summer. It was worked on through all seasons of life, but the content of where I'm writing from is from a failed teenage romance that apexed in the summer before I went to college. It also pulls from actually multiple different relationships that I've had in the past that have failed and just reflecting on those things and seeing how those kind of pushed you to where you are today.,So the summer to me is where all of these themes [coincide] and where I feel the most inspired - it's the summer, it's nostalgic, it's romantic, it's warm and colorful. I think summer will always be in my music - there's something about it, but I think that's what I tried to do with Love, Nostalgia, is [give people] the freedom to plug in their own relationships and their own experiences and be like 'Oh, I want to reflect on this.' Get a little nostalgic, you know? Let yourself have your perspective warm[ed] [by the music]. I think that people should do that with their failed relationships, like look back on it and see what was the beauty in it.
OTW: Any parting words?
Dreamer Boy: We're working on a new album, and the concept behind it is like that, basically it's about friends and all the ways that we know each other and being known. Like looking at someone and knowing that they understand you. So we're working on that and I think that that's a continuation of what we're trying to do.