Dustin Lovelis’ single “Stay Calm Ezra,” out on In Your Chamber today via Park The Van Records, tackles some serious subject matter through the lens of psychedelic pop.
“‘Stay Calm, Ezra’ is about two people I loved and admired but never had a chance to meet,” Lovelis says. “A well-respected musician that I had only spoken to over the phone and my unborn son, Ezra, whom I had only spoken to through the womb. The world lost both of them way too soon and around the same time. ‘Stay Calm, Ezra’ is a plea for them to find each other, wherever they may be.”
The track is reminiscent yet timeless, with classic, four-piece instrumentation and the support of continuous vocal harmonies. The lyrics discuss sentimentality for a lost relationship, and the video closely matches this nostalgic sound. The home-movie-style film simultaneously follows two timelines—a fantasy in which Lovelis is a father of a young boy and a reality in which he is not. Lovelis’ audio and visual work broach the complicated and often unspoken feelings that come with the possibility of what could have been.
Until recently, Dustin Lovelis spent his life kneeling at the altar of the pop song. Having spent the better part of his teens and 20s cutting his teeth in ensembles like The Fling, he opted to set out on his own. His first solo release, Dimensions, came in 2015 sounding something like a psych-rock daydream, followed in 2017 by Been Hit Before, the wake-up slap from said daydream.
Despite all his experience, Lovelis’ newest release, In Your Chamber, feels most like a debut. Stepping out of his comfort zone and into his subconscious, his latest release is decidedly less psychedelic and more psychology, or as he puts it, “A personal conversation with my tragedies.”
His usual clever, and sometimes cutting, songwriting style took a turn for earnest and heartfelt, inviting the listener into eavesdrop on songs that are so explicitly vulnerable and genuine, one may feel they are sitting directly across from him.