Dorian Williams II, known professionally as Skateland, is an American singer, songwriter, producer and multi-instrumentalist based in Austin, TX. After moving from Las Vegas to pursue a degree at the University of Texas, Williams began writing songs and experimenting with various instruments in his bedroom and Skateland was born.
Drawing from a wide variety of musical influences, he combines melancholy lyricism and new wave instrumentation with pop production techniques to create a sound that is equal parts past, present, and future. With Skateland, he often writes about autobiographical experiences, confiding, "I take emotions or feelings that I've gathered from certain experiences and package them into a format that's accessible to anyone who listens. I think that's why I love writing and recording music in non-traditional places as opposed to a fancy studio, writing a guitar part on my porch, jotting down song lyrics at a bar or cafe, tracking vocals in my bedroom etc., it feels like returning to the scene of that major life event and there's an emotional power in that!"
Self produced and recorded, his debut EP New Wave Revival was shared in early 2023. The six-track collection has received praise by the likes of NPR's KUTX which proclaimed it to be, "sensationally mellow cross-genre bops" and stated that it "has the fuzzy charm of shoegaze but filtered through a pop lens".
Skateland's new single "POSTCARDS!" is a highly relatable and important narrative of the often toxic comparison that occurs from being on the internet and social media. He shares, "Having unprecedented access to the lives of everyone around you (or the highlights at least) is a terrible thing if you really think about it, because it's the quickest way to become unhappy with your own life or situation.
In theory we should be able to celebrate each other's achievements, but more often than not we end up feeling discontent, unhappy, and restless with our own lives, including our jobs, possessions, life progress, romantic status, our bodies, and even our families." "POSTCARDS!" features dreamy soundscapes, layered breezy melodies and a kaleidoscope of hazy synths for an intriguing listen.
In just over a year, Skateland has already performed multiple showcases at the coveted SXSW festival as well as garnered praise from the likes of NPR. This rising artist hopes his music inspires people to delve into their own passions. He proclaims, "Fear of failure or a perceived lack of "the right resources" are the biggest reason why people hesitate to try something. Instead of dreading those butterflies in your stomach, embrace them and use them to lift you up. I hope my music inspires people to do "the thing" whatever the thing is."