The themes of love and romance abound on Neon Trees’ latest album, Picture Show, and singer Tyler Glenn explains exactly how those elements inspired him during the songwriting process.
“Still Young” captures the innocence of young love, with lyrics like “Can we kiss like we do in my head/Can we dance like we do on my bed/Like we’re still young.”
Glenn shared why he is inspired by his younger years, saying, “I love the really youthful quality of it. I think it’s very juvenile in a cool way. It reminds me of the innocence of youth and the innocence of young love, and that’s always I think gonna be a theme of songs that I write, because I’m so desperate to stay young – my mind and heart.”
The album’s closing track, “I Am the D.J.,” is also a love story, this time in a fictional world.
Glenn explained the backstory of the track, saying, “The story behind that is the last radio disc jockey on Earth, and he’s clinging to the hope that his love is still alive. And so he’s playing their song over and over again over the airwaves. That song is basically the ballad of these two, and the hope that he can still find her through their music. And every time he plays the song, he remembers all the things he went through.”
He also added that the storyline is a departure from most of his songs’ styles, which usually take inspiration from his own life.
“I wanted to play with the idea that maybe it doesn’t have to be directly about me or personal experience, but something that I feel strongly about that is someone else’s life or a fictional life.”
Neon Trees hit the road next month for their North American tour, and Picture Show is out now.
-Nee-Sa Lossing, CBS Local