There’s a big vibe on Dean Lewis and it’s not hard to see why. His last single Waves has racked up in excess of two and a half million views and over eleven million streams. It doesn’t hurt that there’s a familiarity in his music that sits somewhere between Vance Joy and Whitely with maybe a hint of Bon Iver thrown in too.
Comparisons aside it’s the emotional heart of his songs that are the real reason why his music resonates. Songs like Waves and Need You Now deal with the most primary elements of who we are and the uncertainty of life.
In Waves it’s the longing to capture the spirit of youth as you succumb to adulthood – perhaps a little more jaded by the world that surrounds you.
There is a swelling storm / And I’m caught up in the middle of it all/ And it takes control / Of the person that I thought I was / The boy I used to know
In Need You Now it’s dealing with the vagaries of young adult relationships:
You left your number on my bed / Saying this is all that you gotta do / But its not my fault that my phone went dead
Punctuated by the dismissive tone that surrounds his own loneliness:
Because I don’t need your love / I just need you now
It’s that contradiction between male bravado and youthful vulnerability that’s so refreshingly appealing. These aren’t the lyrics of a worldly young lad, just one who’s still finding his way through it dealing with life and the expectations we place on each other when we’re still not quite sure what we want in our relationships.
To a generation of youthful souls plugged into every social option outside of a meaningful encounter those messages are both louder and more cloudy than ever before. Dean Lewis is not only voicing them with a rare honesty, but with a sense of optimism through soaring choruses that both sweeten the song and the connection with his audience.