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Few artists channel the spirit of '80s new wave as infectiously as George Lewis Jr., better known by the stage name Twin Shadow. Lewis wears his '80s pop influences on his sleeve throughout his recent second album, Confess: The sleek synth-pop vibe of "Five Seconds" recalls Duran Duran, while "Run My Heart" evokes Bruce Springsteen power ballads and Lewis' breathy, straightforward vocals convey the swagger of Prince. Lewis' R&B leanings help give Twin Shadow's sound its own distinct, surprisingly modern identity.
The inspiration for Confess came from a series of motorcycle rides which Lewis took after an accident, and the result reflects his youthful energy. Even the Dominican-born songwriter's fist-pumping anthems ponder rejection and desperation — which couldn't come as too much of a surprise, given that Lewis doubles as a novelist. In this World Cafe session, Twin Shadow performs tracks from Confess and chats about the project with host David Dye.