Music Reviews

Tahiti 80

Wallpaper For the Soul

Minty Fresh

If pleasant melodies, electronics, ironic culture references, and played-out orchestration techniques could compensate for the lack of any discernable sense of expression, I could recommend Tahiti 80’s Wallpaper For the Soul to you. I probably still wouldn’t, but I could.

Unfortunately, as stands, Wallpaper For the Soul – despite being an imminently sunny listen – too readily accepts its role as a gleeful gelling of Muzak and indie rock. Let me make it perfectly clear that I’m not adverse to wonderfully orchestrated pop music, it just needs to mean something. Wallpaper doesn’t even aim high, it states what it is in the title, except maybe that addition of “For The Soul”; ignore that.

The orchestration is actually quite extraordinary in places, thanks to Richard Hewson ,who should probably rival more often name-dropped producers like Jack Nitsche and Curt Boettcher. His work on albums by Nick Drake, Mary Hopkin, James Taylor, Al Stewart, or the soundtrack to Xanadu certainly sticks out, even in the cases where the leading musician doesn’t. Yet even Hewson’s production can’t save the botched job of Wallpaper, unless he meant to tailor a listening experience suited for cleaning your house.

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