Neon Trees Frontman Tyler Glenn’s Solo Debut ‘Excommunication’ Out Now

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Excommunication (Island Records), Tyler Glenn’s debut solo album, is out now and available here. Glenn is the lead vocalist/keyboardist for Neon Trees.

Known for such multi-platinum hits as “Animal” and “Everybody Talks,” the band has released three albums including 2014’s Pop Psychology (Island Records), which debuted at No. 6 on The Billboard 200, at No. 1 on the iTunes Alternative Album Chart and within the Top 5 of the Overall iTunes Album Chart. “Sleeping With A Friend,” the first single from Pop Psychology, was a Top 10 hit at both the Alternative and Hot AC formats and within the Top 15 at Pop radio.

Glenn will perform on “Live with Kelly” on Tuesday, October 25. He will take the stage at EW PopFest on Saturday, October 29. The ultimate pop culture festival from Entertainment Weekly will take place at The Reef in downtown Los Angeles. The New York Times, which welcomed Glenn for this recent Popcast, noted that the “fiery solo album questions almost everything Tyler Glenn used to believe in.”

Raised as a Mormon, Glenn came out as gay in a 2014 interview with Rolling Stone and remained steadfast in his faith until last fall, when the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS) announced a new policy identifying those in a same-sex marriage as apostates and prohibiting their children from being blessed or baptized. The announcement threw Glenn – and many others – into a tailspin.

“I don’t think there’s ever been an album like this,” marveled Billboard. Rage observed, “It’s like listening to the seven stages of the grieving process: Shock/disbelief, denial, bargaining, guilt, anger, depression and acceptance/hope. It’s all there, inviting us to take what we need from it and move forward, just as he did.” The Salt Lake City Tribune said, “Glenn doesn’t just want to throw spiritual struggles in your face — he wants you to dance, too, and the soul-baring lyrics are matched with plenty of stomping ’80s-retro synths and beats that Neon Trees fans will find familiar. Ultimately, the dance floor is the church Glenn thinks everyone should belong to.”

 Billboard praised the video for lead single “Shameless” as “provocative.” The clip, which, can be viewed here, was directed by Mike Harris, who also helmed the controversial video for “Trash.” Rolling Stone premiered the “Trash” video, observing, “his solo debut is as political as it is personal” and praising Glenn’s performance in the video as “incendiary.” The clip – which can be seen here – shot to No. 1 on the iTunes Alternative Music Videos chart shortly after its release in April.

Tyler Glenn - Shameless

Excommunication’ was recorded at Rancho Pagzilla in North Hollywood, CA. Longtime Neon Trees collaborator Tim Pagnotta produced the album and Glenn co-produced with additional production by Nate Pyfer. It was engineered by Pagnotta and Brian Phillips.

In bringing his themes to life sonically, Glenn was inspired by his love for dark wave ’80s synth-pop and industrial music (artists like Nine Inch Nails and Depeche Mode), as well as hip-hop and R&B. “Tim and I discussed the album feeling like something you put on at the beginning of your night and then it ends when the sun rises,” explains Tyler Glenn. “So it’s almost a night-drive record. It’s a reflective album and we wanted it to feel like that in its sonics and tones.”

Overall, Glenn says his goal was for the listener to relate to the way he felt during this emotional, tumultuous time in his life. “I want people to feel the rejection, the anger, the confusion,” he says. “And then I want them to feel the joy, the excitement, and the eventual hopefulness that can come from taking a leap into the unknown and not adhering to what you thought was the only way. Ultimately I want them to feel that entire feeling.”

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