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Lighthouse Family, Blue Sky In Your Head - album review

By Leigh Sanders | Entertainment | Published:

Anyone who remembers listening to the radio anytime in the second half of the 90s and into the 00s will remember Lighthouse Family hits.

Lighthouse Family are back with their first record in 18 years

Those lazy, easy-going electronic pop tunes lathered in the smooth vocals of Tunde Baiyewu were...everywhere.

And let's be honest. They were good. They were a perfect family album - something that could be put on in the car without upsetting anyone sat there with their differing tastes. So for many 30-somethings they may provide happy memories of younger years.

READ MORE: Lighthouse Family to play Birmingham

Whatever Lighthouse Family mean to you, they are back. Their first new record in 18 years, celebrating nearly a quarter of a century since they first dropped that timeless debut record Ocean Drive that spawned the hit single of the same name, as well as Lifted.

Reading all their narrative for this, their fourth record, they say they were trying to recreate the same uplifting anthems. Beacons of positivity in an increasingly volatile and hopeless world.

It seems strange, then, that much of this feels a little melancholic. Not compared to your average pop song, but certainly when you remember their undeniably happy hits of yesteryear. Perhaps that is the sign of growing more world-weary as you live longer? As a result, it just doesn't quite hit the same spot.

Perhaps the record, then, is truer to when Baiyewu said before its release: "I like hymns, always have. I think all the songs on the record have that feel. They’re urban hymns.”

READ MORE: ‘The stars seemed to align’ – Lighthouse Family star on comeback after 18 years

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It's hard to argue with that when you hear powerful yet deep and reverberating slow burners like Live Again or the string-powered emotive choruses of The Long Goodbye. The many slower moments captured within this 13-track album.

But there are times when they reach for those gleeful vibes we remember them for. Put My Heart On You is a beat-laden pop romp that erupts into a fast-paced and dance-inducing, melodic chorus. My Salvation has one of those sports montage-esque instrumentals to accompany pictures of struggling athletes accomplishing their goals, while Super 8 is one of the strongest moments on the whole record with its inspirational build to a crescendo.

On top of that, they have included a second disc called Essentials for anyone living under a rock during their heyday. This includes the tunes you remember like Ocean Drive, Lifted, Raincloud, Lost In Space, Question Of Faith and Postcard From Heaven.

Rating: 6/10

Lighthouse Family kick off their return tour at Birmingham's Symphony Hall on November 11

Leigh Sanders

By Leigh Sanders
@LSanders_Star

Senior sub editor for the MNA portfolio and entertainments writer leaning towards features and reviews. Get releases to me at leigh.sanders@expressandstar.co.uk

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