Chicago’s Sonic Illusionist, the elusive traveler of recording artists. A jester of mystery, formerly known to some as Flynn. Tyler James Logsdon has re-branded himself and dropped a record reminiscent of 80’s super synth pop. There are a lot on this record that can remind you of, depending on which track we look at from his 14 song LP New Policy, artists such as A-Ha, Depeche Mode, Daft Punk, Robert Smith from The Cure, Interpol, Pulp, Chrome Sparks, Explosions in the Sky, Chicago’s The Drum, Royksopp, TRVST, Chris Isaak, Nick Cave, Kavinsky, Imogen Heap, and even one of my personal favorites, Brian Molko of Placebo.
Now that’s a lot of artists to compare the likes of him to but I guarantee that if you listen to this record from front to back it will feel like a lush bright mixture of all of those sounds, feelings, voices and progressions creating this all new, all too unique experience from Tyler James Logsdon. What I appreciate the most about this album is that its not only conceptual but its made to be listened to from top to bottom. It is an experience to be absorbed, not to just pick a couple songs from the record that were more popular or did better as singles.
That being said, TJL does have major single power potential on a lot of the songs on the record such as my personal favorite PLASTIC, and then STARDUST, REQUISITE, BLIND, BY MYSELF, and REFLECTION definitely can stand alone, but paired with each other on a full length project they do even better. Not every track has vocals, a few of the numbers on the record are just a great composition of instrumental. These instrumental numbers offer a dynamic texture to the album. You get 2-3 songs of TJL smooth crooning’s and falsettos for every one uptempo 80’s instrumental.
You can hear and feel so many different influences when consuming this project and what is more impressive is that everything is entirely produced and engineered by Tyler James Logsdon himself! He seems to channel Kavinsky, Daft Punk, and TRVST on the record STARDUST. STARDUST is a roller coaster ride of a song that makes you feel like you are playing the Rainbow Road level of Mario Kart or you are Garrett Hedlund driving a futuristic motorcycle in the film Tron: Legacy. The song Plastic sounds as though the Norwegian pop band A-Ha and the Swedish artist Royksopp fused into one for that record to come to life.
TJL uses strong memorable sounds for his melodies that bring you back to that 80’s era while also progressively bringing you further into our time with epic electronic dance pop. It cannot be quite explain it; but his sound is both new and old, progressive and retro, archaic and cutting edge. It is as though he is taken the timelessness of what we miss and loved about the 80’s and combined that with new pop composing techniques of today. Back to the Future, or Forward to the Past? Nostalgia and hope seem to be these ethereal feelings he exudes in his album. That is how I interpret the name, New Policy. TJL has created a newer type of sound by pulling from esteemed golden eras of music history.
Epic: A humble word to describe the music by Tyler James Logsdon. He can program drums in the manner that I have seen Chrome Sparks play live and sing deeply in the style Nick Cave or Leonard Cohen on the record Reflection. He sounds like Robert Smith from The Cure on the record Blind. And some records Tyler’s layering of his vocals remind me of James Blake or Lana Del Rey songs. The talented Mr. Logsdon capable of palpable tunes that present themselves as a blend of some of your favorite most inspiring Swedish dance pop records.
The replay value of this LP, NEW POLICY by Tyler James Logsdon is extremely high for a few reasons. It is a sonic and compositional variety that seems to draw from a plethora of artists. Its production value is pioneering what you remember and love about 80s synth pop. It’s genuinely a record that will have you singing, dancing, laughing and even crying (just wait till you get to song number 13 with Take My Hand)!
Tyler James Logsdon is chosen as Artist of the Week because I believe what he has done with his full length record, NEW POLICY, deserves spotlight and praise. His fused style of progressive and retro offers a listener an amazing sonic time. Tyler James Logsdon will be playing shows in the near future around the city of Chicago. I hope you are lucky enough to see his records performed live. Here is to growth and better futures, here is to A NEW POLICY.