If there was one thing that Jack Tatum knew when he began working on Life of Pause, his newest effort as Wild Nothing, it was that he was terrified of being any one thing, or being of any one genre. “I desperately wanted for this to be the kind of record that would displace me,” he says. “Whether or not I accomplish that, I know that my only hope of getting there is to constantly reinvent. That reinvention doesn’t need to be drastic, but every new record has to have its own identity, and it has to have a separate set of goals from what came before.”
Life of Pause presents itself as Wild Nothing's cheeriest record, as Tatum keeps things simple and honest. Tatum admitted that he was listening to "a lot of Philly soul, sweet soul music" while working on the record, and when these influences peek through in his writing, particularly when the notes of funk and disco are pushed, it feels like a move in the right direction. Tatum draws from an expanded tool kit of, at various points in the record: xylophones, saxophone, expanded percussion, and countless new synth voices.