Born out of L.A.'s indie scene, Tashaki Miyaki is singer/multi-instrumentalist Paige Stark and guitarist Luke Paquin, who, after releasing an EP and a couple of covers albums, brought in bass player Dora Hiller for their proper full-length debut, The Dream. It's an apt title for the band's shimmering mix of dream pop and coarser noise pop. The album features production by Stark and performances by a handful of guests including longtime friends Jon Brion and Joel Jerome, the latter of whom recorded their eponymous EP. Instruments on the varied but mostly lush arrangements, aside from a core of echoey vocals, rhythm section, and guitar strata, include occasional strings, acoustic guitar, and melodic percussion. After establishing swirling, symphonic noise pop with tunes like "The City," with its mid-song surge of sustained distortion, and the ramshackle "Girls on TV," they offer warmer, floaty fare on songs like "Cool Runnings" and "Something' Is Better Than Nothin.'" There's even an acoustic track, "Keep Me in Mind," which sees Stark's affectionate melody backed by acoustic guitar, glockenspiel, and violin. Taken together, The Dream's balance of soft and harsh textures, relaxed tempos, focus on love songs, and overall sunny impression should make a fitting soundtrack for weekend recharging and fair-weather road trips.
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AllMusic Review by Marcy Donelson