lake j


Contact Jacob Daneman about lake j

Today, lake j — the solo project of Twin Peaks singer & guitarist Cadien Lake James — announces his debut solo album, Dizzy, out on March 1st, and shares lead single My Own Mess.” Written and produced by James, the album features contributions from a stable of largely Chicago musicians, including Julien Ehrlich, Max Kakacek, Will Miller &  Malcolm Brown (Whitney), Macie Stewart (FINOM), Yuma Abe, Andrew Humphrey, and Twin Peaks bandmate Colin Croom. Lead single “My Own Mess” sees James blossoming in a sun-soaked pop number, with James’ warm falsetto, an upbeat Wurlitzer synth lead and vibraphone flourishes throughout.


His debut LP as lake j, the album carries forth all of James’ curiosity and exploration, finding just-right sounds and giving each song a distinct identity, ultimately pairing it with an uncanny sense for rhythm for an album that compels your head to bop straight through. There’s no option. It just does.


The essence of Dizzy: a beat that yearns. Something steady, constant, dependable, and comfortable, but not resigned to “chill.” Not sinking into study-beat lethargy. James’ breakbeat platform, topped with Ronnie Lane-ian jangle chords, sparkling harps and swirling keys, pushes out, wants to tell you something — even if that something is nothing in particular.


Into these musical worlds he pours lyrics inspired by Wong Kar Wai films—scenes of relationship tumult and angst that Cadien says reflect the desperation of the music. You can’t compose chord progressions like Cadien’s without evoking some feeling of worry and catharsis; whether autobiographical or not, Cadien’s cinematic love stories tie the album’s music with an emotional bow.  At its heart Dizzy is a companion album conceived by one of the young pioneers of a generation of dreamy music. In the 2010s Cadien and Twin Peaks gave a new voice to the infectious, verbed-out chords of his predecessors, torch-carrying influence that you can hear in just about any rock club on any given night in the United States. In 2023 he offers a further refinement, one with as much good sense and exciting yet subtle flair as the clothes he wears. Cadien’s mind builds a world you want to live in and with Dizzy, now we can.