You’d imagine Tahiti 80 might get a little sick of being compared to Phoenix. After all, who else does anyone mention when talking about French bands who produce catchy synth hooks and boppable indie pop beats? For Tahiti 80 – the band started by frontman Xavier Boyer and bassist Pedro Resende, who are now touring as a foursome after the departure of Julien Barbagallo – it’s a double-edged sword. Sure, they live in the shadow of the uber-popular Lisztomaniacs but, at the same time, they’ve also been riding the wave of a new-found Francomania that the likes of Phoenix have swelled up.
The Phoenix comparisons also bury the fact that Tahiti 80 have been around for quite a bit longer than their Gallic cousins. They formed back in 1993, fresh-eyed kids with a shared affinity for indie pop (it doesn’t show…) and have since prolifically released 10 EPs and five albums of their own summery brand of synth-infused tunes. Their latest, The Past, The Present, and The Possible, released early last year, is, according to Boyer, ‘much darker’ than anything else they’ve ever produced. That doesn’t really mean much in the context of Tahiti 80’s always-sunny aesthetics (read: they mention breakups, finding oneself and mortality) but, all in all, it’s business as usual: fun, upbeat, luminous and sounding like Phoenix. Not a bad formula to be working with.
Tahiti 80 plays Hidden Agenda on Wed May 2. Tickets: Hidden Agenda, 9170 6073.