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Ear to the Ground: Tahiti 80’s “Crush!”

One listen will beg the question, “Why aren’t these French electro-pop rulers as big as Air or Phoenix?”

In a more just musical world, Tahiti 80 would be just as big as Phoenix or Air. The French indie-pop band formed in the mid ’90s and has since been churning out sexy songs they aptly describe as, “ … edgy soft rock hard pop synth symphony.”

Their new single “Crush!” is a confectionary slice of disco-laced electro-pop with seductive melodies. Singer/guitarist Xavier Boyer’s buttery high tenor is, at times, incredibly reminiscent of a young Colin Blunstone from the Zombies. And the smooth grooves are driven by a gauzy yet almost mechanical-sounding rhythm section that combines the strut of early ’80s yacht rock with that late-’70s moment in Bee Gees history that filled the cracks between symphonic baroque pop and wide-lapelled disco.

Floating over all this is Boyer’s clean 6-string funk. With more headroom than Max Headroom, he segues from muted rhythmic strumming to crisp ringing chords and creamy, chorus-infused melodies that are the perfect match for the accompanying synth lines. Get into the groove, boy.