Boyish Bravado

Is chillwave dead?

Nacho Cano says dream pop is “everything my music is about.”
  • Nacho Cano says dream pop is “everything my music is about.”

I’m Sure, the newest effort from La Jolla–via–Mexico City bedroom-dreamer Twin Cabins (Nacho Cano), is the definitive soundtrack to star-crossed late adolescence.

While Cano’s earlier releases explored more introspective, ambient textures, I’m Sure finds footing with an infectious, beat-driven concoction of chillwave, beach rock, and dream pop.

Now available (at name-your-price) online (, I’m Sure and the boyish bravado that it asserts have already garnered attention in bloglandia for its new wave drum machines, guitars suspended in reverb, and hormonal lyrics that sound as if they’re sung from the pages of a diary.

Follows is an email interview with Nacho Cano of Twin Cabins.

Chad Deal: I’m Sure sounds like nostalgia wrapped in an album. What feelings are you reaching to evoke with this collection of songs?

Nacho Cano: I have this great admiration for girls and in particular my closest (girl) friends. I allow them into my life and I let them get close. Over time, like any other, I begin to romanticize what it would be like to be with this friend. I feel great frustration when these feelings arise because though I would like to indulge in my emotions, friendships always come first. So, my music became an exploration of this frustration with a very particular kind of romance, one that didn’t exist. The songs became a narrative for a romance that would likely never happen. Yet the song allows me to feel that emotion as it is truly mine and somehow that seems like it is enough for me.

CD: Where does the surfy influence come from?

NC: I guess the surfy influence comes from riding my bike near the beach. I gave surfing a shot when I first moved to the United States and I found great difficulty in it. I caught a couple of waves and shortly thereafter accepted that that was as good as it was going to get.

CD: What instruments came into play on this album? Is that an 808 in there?

NC: Ha ha [I actually laughed when I read the 808 part]. No, I didn’t. I used an old Alesis SR-16 to make it sound super ’80s. I mainly used really cheap instruments when I started making this album. An old Washburn with really bad pickups [hence the fuzzing in the background], because of that I relied heavily on my effects pedals. An RV-5, Line6 DL4 (Best), and a simple OD Pedal. I really wanted it to feel stripped down and somewhat raw, but then I got a nice guitar and started polishing it up. A Taylor hollow-body electric.

CD: Is chillwave dead?

NC: I wouldn’t know. I get classified as chillwave. But, in truth, I’d like my music to be labeled as anyone would like to. I’ve been classified as dream-pop, and I think that is the one that I most agree with. Simply because dreams are everything my music is about.

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