The Lemurs, The Winter Sounds, The Sky Above

Not a laugh riot, but sold: The Winter Sounds

The Winter Sounds: Four guys and one gal from Georgia and South Carolina have a debut CD, Porcelain Empire, that's old-fashioned modern rock. Built on chiming guitars, intermittent synths and catchy choruses, there's a dash of emo here and a pinch of U2 there. They are better when they generate windswept romantic tunes, as on the energetic "Windy City Nights" and the slower "Poor Sailors." And like most young bands aiming for bigger and better things, they could use more personality—or at least a novelty song or two—but then again, U2 was never a laugh riot and they've done OK for themselves.

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