Deathray Deathray

Produced by Eric Valentine (Smashmouth, Third Eye Blind, Citizen King), this debut by Sacramento's Deathray is certainly equipped to make a dent in the pop world. With production that harkens back to the first Cars album, Deathray encapsulate the ethos of late '70s new wave. Quirky keys, super dry drums way out in the front of the mix and almost every song under three minutes, this album is a lesson in the art of pop economy. Add to this a certain amount of defiant panache and there you have it, a 21st century hybrid of all things ponce that even rednecks can dig. Some of the verses are so catchy they rival most choruses on the airwaves. Deathray still maintain enough underground integrity to amass some real fans, with a sizeable portion being 15-year-old girls. (Universal)