A decided throwback to the wonderful Eighties, Wyatt Blair's new album, Point Of No Return, out Friday via Lolipop Records and Burger Records, is a decidedly retro affair, one which unashamedly embraces all that was catchy and fun about that earlier decade's radio pop.
The second album from the guy who formed Lolipop Records, Point Of No Return plays like a Rick Springfield album re-imagined by a bunch of fans of early Depeche Mode singles. It's a chirpy, peppy affair and one which largely succeeds despite some songs overstaying their welcome in terms of length. "Dancing On A Dream" mines a similar vein of power pop as that found by Young Guv on his 2015 album, while the wonderfully-titled "Young Hearts Unite" owes as much to Helen Love singles as it does to Hooters ones. It's the sound of early New Wave filtered through a radio-friendly lens, if that makes any sense. "So You Wanna Break My Heart" is nearly a Cheap Trick single, while "No Surrender" made me think of the first Poison album in the best possible way. Elsewhere, the more subdued "Cherry Pie" subtly blends a certain Ariel Pink-style approach with all the trappings of a Night Ranger hit.
Look, originality is not the point here. On its own terms, Wyatt Blair's Point Of No Return succeeds admirably at taking these styles from 3 decades ago and jazzing them up a bit. Expertly produced, this is a fine set of sometimes chiming and always chirping pop jams. Fans of both The Rezillos and Quiet Riot should find much to admire here, if you get my meaning.