Review: Morgan Willis Drops New Synthwave Album 'Dreamer'

Morgan Willis channels 80s nostalgia and synthwave into this soaring album.
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Morgan Willis Dreamer Album Cover

French synthwave producer Morgan Willis has released a new album Dreamer to help kick off the first New Music Friday of the year. In another soft week for new music since a large part of the music business is still on vacation, Willis’ album Dreamer helps to add a spark to the day.

Dreamer clocks in at a little over an hour with 13 songs. It plays on just about all of the clichés of 80’s retro synthwave, but still feels good. There are the big snare drums, heavily processed synths and whimsical vocals that sound like a mullet cooing in your ear.

The album stays true to itself, yet covers a fair amount of ground. Some of the vocals can be a bit cheesy and take this dive into the regrettable parts of the genre, but overall it stands well together. The instrumentals bring a lot to the table like the shimmering “We Are Young!” or the mellower “Dreamer," while the vocal song "C.O.M.A." brings some modern indie dance sentiments to the record.

Dreamer is an album that feels youthful, hopeful and full of life. It is like driving some glorious sports car in a video game.

The full album is out to stream now and can be purchased on Bandcamp. A vinyl version can be pre-ordered now with the hope it will be shipped around March 13.

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