Pop’s notorious night bird, Adam Young (aka Owl City), delivers an eye-opening new album.Adam Young never rests. The 24-year-old mastermind of the one-man electronica band Owl City has ?become famous as much for his chart-topping, dreamlike pop as for his incurable insomnia.
Prior to attaining international-star status, the moonlighting musician — in part to calm his nighttime nerves — began creating texturally rich, trance-inducing sonic gems from the cellar of his parents’ house in Owatonna, Minn., using keyboards, a computer and digital audio-recording programs. Adopting the moniker Owl City — a nod to his nocturnal hyperactivity — Young set the Internet abuzz with his 2007 EP, Of June, which featured the infectious “Hello Seattle.”
Young admits that the stress of following up a successful record made for little shut-eye while writing and recording his latest album, All Things Bright and Beautiful (Universal Republic, $12), which drops this month. “But those evenings I found it hard to fall asleep were the nights I felt most inspired,” he says.
By mixing grown-up themes with euphoric melodies, evocative software-driven synth tones and childlike lyrical imagery, Young believes All Things Bright may be enlightening for fans. “The music is definitely more personal this time around,” he says. “The last year or two has been a whirlwind of experiences. I had a lot to draw on.”
Best of all? Young no longer has to toil in his parents’ basement; he now has a place of his own in Owatonna with a makeshift music studio. “It’s perfect for making noise at 4 a.m.,” Young says. “It’s really a studio with a house attached.”