Music Review

Attempted imitation?

‘A Town Called Paradise’ is the fifth studio album from Dutch electronic DJ Tiesto (Tijs Michiel Verwest prefers to be called Tiesto).

The number of guest artistes on the album doesn’t do justice to the overall effect of it. Electronic Dance Music (EDM) often tends to be repetitive, cliched and generic.

The opening Red Lights is more of a pop song and less trance EDM, a genre that made him famous. Nevertheless, it works well with a catchy hook by Michael Zitron. The instrumental break down is familiar. Footprints (featuring Cruickshank) has rather juvenile lyrics (...we’ll never let go/ We’ll leave our footprints all over the world).

The title track, A Town Called Paradise, features Zac Barnett, lead singer of the band American Authors. As the title suggests, this is a peppy track with melodic tones and soaring highs, and arguably an overdose of production. Echoes, which features Andreas Moe, is a cool track and a contrast to the other tracks in the album.

Last Train features soaring vocals and catchy lyrics from New Zealand chanteuse Ladyhawke (You’re on the last train home again... This is the last song played in vain). Wasted, an Avicii-esque folksy-electro track, has the vocals of Matthew Koma. The Feeling (featuring Ou Est le Swimming Pool) has a lively dance melody.

They are a little different from the normal EDM fare. By the way, the featured
artistes whose name translates to ‘Where is the swimming pool’ are not French. They are English. Shimmer is an Avicii-like track featuring Christian Burns. Violin and piano instrumentals in the background replace the synths, but the vocals sound hollow.

On the whole, Tiesto’s distinct hook style seems to be missing. He appears to be imitating the success formula of other DJs.

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