Leon Thomas’ ‘amazing vision’ comes to life in debut album ‘Electric Dusk’

via Leon Thomas on Instagram

It has been a long time coming for the release of Leon Thomas’ debut album Electric Dusk. Named after the oldest drive-in located in Los Angeles, this album brings a nostalgic feel through the 60’s Jazz and R&B inspiration. Using only three words, Leon Thomas describes this album as “Vivid Story-telling.”

“I had a very amazing vision on how I wanted this thing to sound,” Thomas said. His vision of a cinematic, retro concept is perfectly clear as he intended it to be.

The multi-talented musician expressed that a lot of his inspiration came from Black Rom-Coms such as Love Jones which inspired the track of the same name on the album. A track named after an ‘old school’ movie perfectly complements the album title named after a famous drive-in. The ‘simplicity of lyrics’ in Blue Hundred and My Will are complemented by ‘psychedelic rock elements mixed in with R&B,’ Thomas described. “If you really listen to the effects that I am putting on a lot of the guitars, it’s definitely inspired from a place that comes from that 60’s realm.”

It was important for him to blend the inspiration from different genres. The opening track, Slow Dow,n embodies the inspiration from Jazz.

Breaking Point is a perfect illustration of this sonically and lyrically with an additional cinematic feel in the music video. Supporting the old-school film-inspired concept cohesive to the album name, the black and white music video truly feels like an old film. Illustrating a couple reaching their Breaking Point shows scenes of Leon Thomas and his partner growing distant, and eventually reaching that point by the end of the video. Hearing the lyric “We are both just filling voids” and being able to see it in the video, truly makes it seem like this song was made for film while remaining personal to Thomas. Breaking Point is the song that he is most proud of because it represents his life at the time it was created and it received a lot of love. 

He expressed that writing for himself is ‘uncomfortable’ at times because it requires him to be vulnerable, in comparison to writing for others which he describes as ‘playing therapist.’  In contrast to being the one to push other artists to be vulnerable and real, Thomas jokes that when making his own music he has to really “dig deep and find some of those uncomfortable moments to talk about that I won’t say on the first day but I am going to have to sing for the entire world.” Some of the people he has worked with as a songwriter and producer are Drake, Post Malone, Ariana Grande, and SZA. 

The album is fully mixed by Leon Thomas himself, but he also collaborated on songwriting and producing with colleagues. Faxonly and BNYX who he had collaborated with before working with Drake, actually sent the track Crash and Burn over to Thomas.

Set to support Ty Dolla $ign this fall on the More Motion Less Emotion Tour, Thomas said he is most excited to perform Crash and Burn live. He has already had the opportunity to perform this song live at a few shows. “It was cool to see people singing it back with me. It just came out around that time. I’m excited to sing that record now and to see how far it’s come.”

The album is available for streaming on all platforms now.


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