Ryan Rowley admits he's a David Lynch fanboy. "I like that his movies will sometimes wrap around me in the most uncomfortable way each time I watch them. I'll sink into the couch and get stuck," he says. "It's terrifying in a good way."
That's also a fitting description for Rowley's Boyish Charm, his vessel for dark, brooding pop songs, and his soft-focus, jewel-toned performances.
"I want it to be sexy and seductive," he says. "Kind of whiny and bitchy, but at the same time I want it emotional, seductive, lovey-dovey without being smooth. More harsh-seductive."
Rowley grew up in Baton Rouge and studied music business at Loyola University New Orleans before transferring to LSU for advertising, inspired by fashion and art outside music while focusing on his sound and voice — floating around lean guitar lines, rich reverb and plush post-punk atmosphere. "I wanted to create catchy Cure-ish music," he says. "Catchy, accessible, but also creative and not copy-paste-easy. ... But not too serious, because I can't take anything too serious."
Rowley, who also performs with New Holland, featuring Boyish Charm collaborator Alex Skalany, debuted Boyish Charm in 2016, though early performances were "the most raw I had probably sounded," Rowley says. "Now I feel more comfortable. I want to create a soft, dreamy presence."
The 2017 Music Issue:
13 Dreams | Blato Zlato | Boyish Charm
Tasche & the Psychedelic Roses | Yung Vul