Produced solely by Cruise and co-written with Musso and DJ Poet (given name, Jamie L. Munson) along with Che Brooks, ”Closer To Heaven” is a four-to-the-floor pop tune wrapped in a sound plucked straight from the dance festival stages of 2013. It’s an EDM track by genre, but by form, it is far and away a pop tune, thanks largely to the influence of Cruise’s pop-credentialed co-stars.
“I have always loved working with DJ Poet,” says Cruise. “Ever since I started producing he has really helped to mentor and guide me through the whole world of music.”
Poet’s most successful collab with the Peas, “Boom Boom Pow,” earned a Grammy for Best Pop Vocal Performance, and like that track, “Closer To Heaven” showcases an efficient topline that lets the production take center stage. Musso’s breathy tenor balances Cruise’s trance-inspired counter-melody that intentionally wobbles on each note -- an effect that is not only unique but somewhat daring for a first-time producer.
“When I made the track I had Mason’s voice in mind the whole time,” says Cruise. “When it came time to put a vocal on it, having him was perfect.”
Recorded in Los Angeles, “Closer To Heaven” is Cruise’s first venture into production, though he has been making a name for himself in the last year as a DJ, playing parties with Nervo and Steve Aoki. Cruise says it was another teenaged DJ who had him bewitched with the beats. “I have always loved house music since I was a little kid but when I saw Madeon at Coachella [in 2012]. That really inspired me to go fully into EDM and producing.”
Even a cursory listen to “Closer To Heaven” should have your happy feet jumping on a couch. Naturally, it’s hard to separate the artist from his famous parents, but keep your eyes wide shut for a minute, fix yourself a cocktail and just go with it. This is no novelty track and it won’t be the last we hear from Connor Cruise.