If we had heard the Low Stars' self-titled debut album when we were in high school, we would have had orgasms all over it. With a pair of ratty Chuck Taylors on our feet and a backward newsboy cap on our head, we would have listened to it incessantly between Toad the Wet Sprocket and Poi Dog Pondering binges. Low Stars is a Viacom version of warm and folksy—like a plasticized Crosby, Stills and Nash—with mostly acoustic guitars, nasal four-part harmonies and simple, restrained drumming. There are up-tempo feel-good rockers ("Love, Love, Love," "Need a Friend," "Just Around the Corner") and slower feel-good ballads ("Why Not Your Baby," "L.A. Forever," "Warmer Winds"). Any one of these songs would be right at home on that mix CD we put together for our youth group's white water rafting trip. Or as the theme song for that What About Brian show. (Seriously, what about Brian?) And if this isn't enough to give you a sense of the album, keep in mind it's being released by Starbucks Entertainment. Yeah, we would have absolutely loved this stuff back when we were high school kids listening to "college rock." Now that we're older, wiser and exponentially more cynical, music like this makes us want to build a time machine so we can travel back to 1992 and kick our own asses.
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