Nostalgic longing and pangs of regret are hardly typical topics for a summer jam, yet indie-pop duo Eighty Ninety’s latest release “Dream” is so infectious, you’ll hardly mind. Releasing on June 15, “Dream” is the group’s second single off of upcoming EP Bowery Beach Road, and it serves as a promising signal of impressive things to come.
“Dream” wastes no time, with acoustic guitar and lead singer Abner James’ distinct vocals immediately launching the song into poetic imagery of idealized romance. An echoing synth brings the chorus into an soaring, ethereal soundscape. Melancholy lyrics recall memories of a past relationship, lamenting the lost love with the repeated refrain, “I had a dream that we were doing it right.” Cuts between the synth-driven, electro-pop chorus and gentler, guitar-led verses are sharp yet seamless, juxtaposing the longing of what could have been with the musing vignettes of what used to be. The result is a shimmery, intoxicating sound that will easily melt into a playlist of summer vibes.
Vocalist Abner James shared the intimate inspiration behind “Dream” with Ones to Watch:
“A dream can be a lot of things — a wish, desire, fantasy, a dream while you sleep. This song is about what happened when the person I loved was suddenly gone and the mark they made on my dreams didn’t disappear but actually grew, filling the space they left behind with stories about what could have been and choices I should have made.”
Eight Ninety is the project of Brooklyn-based brothers Abner (vocals, production) and Harper (guitar, production) James. The pair’s self-produced and independently released songs have been met with mounting success in the past year, a testament to the power of their raw skill and eclectic musical style. Ordained by Taylor Swift herself with a coveted spot on the Songs Taylor Loves playlist with 2017 release “Your Favorite Song,” the brothers have built on their success with a slot opening for Des Rocs in Brooklyn on June 18.
Marrying elements of synth, electropop, and indie-rock, Eighty Ninety have forged a glittering, entrancing sound that is, above all else, their own. Have an exclusive early listen to “Dream” below: