ALBUM REVIEW: NEON DREAMS' 'SWEET DREAMS TILL SUNBEANS' TELLS TALES OF RESILIENCE



From Halifax, Nova Scotia, this Canadian duo spent the first few years pushing boundaries, experimenting with different musical styles, gaining a fan base, accumulating millions of streams and even earning awards and a gold single, but it seemed as though something was still missing.

Frank Kadillac and Adrian Morris - collectively known as Neon Dreams decided that a change was in order, so Kadillac headed to a healing retreat in Sedona, Arizona, where he was encouraged to open up about his troubled childhood.

“It was the most painful thing ever," recalls Kadillac. “Even with the kindness I’ve gotten from so many people, there was a part of me that felt like I never really had a voice for myself until about a year ago.

The experience made Kadillac realize the power he holds as a songwriter and would later manifest into the duo’s debut album, Sweet Dreams till Sunbeams.

Fans are already drawn in by the pair's signature brand of energetic electro-pop but - on this release, Kadillac’s lyrics take centre stage.

"I’m hoping that my personal stories can give our fans the happiness they deserve, if they are missing it,” says Kadillac. "I used to think making music was just a cool thing to do and a way to make myself feel better. But then I realized just how much it affects people’s everyday lives. This album is the start of me building a home for myself and anyone else who is looking for shelter under my relatable stories."

From the uplifting radio hit “High School Dropout" to the opening track "Life Without Fantasies," every song on this album retains the same EDM-infused pop as the preceding EPs with a toned down acoustic sound and an added touch of raw and vulnerability.

With so much of the same music being pumped out these days, albums like this are a refreshing reminder that there are sincere human-beings behind the words and messages of their songs, as Kadillac reflects:

"I always think, ‘What does the world need? Will this help someone get through the day? Will this make them feel better?"

Each of the record's seven tracks are authentic and relatable - conveying individual messages that come together to tell a tale of strength and hope. The story begins with "Life Without Fantasies," about loving the life you live and not basing its worth on materialism - "I don't need a lot, I don't need a range, I just want love and a little bit of pain." Another beautiful ballad is "We Were Kings," on which Kadillac reminisces about youth, friendship and overcoming stereotypes and adversity:

"The friends that helped me through being bullied by kids and their parents for being a 6’2 13-year-old and mentally tortured from racism. The friends that sat with me in the hallways eating lunch cause’ the cafeteria gave me anxiety. The friends that would listen to my really bad songs and said they were good to make me feel better. This song is for them.” 

The personal collection closes with the powerful title track - sure to help someone get through the day, "Sweet Dreams till Sunbeams." This track hones the album's underlying message of resilience and triumph through tough times - chronicling narratives of overcoming life's obstacle's and staying positive.

Sweet Dreams till Sunbeams is a solid-sounding record with diverse instrumentation and lyricism -packed with genuine substance and storytelling that is refreshing in today's society.




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