Turn Off The Stars Everything Is Ok

Turn Off The Stars sound like they want to head straight for the charts. It’s actually nauseating how palpable this sentiment is on their debut album, Everything Is Okay, a confounding blend of suburban punk, schmaltzy balladry, and U2-inspired bravado. It’s not even the almost acceptable War to The Joshua Tree-era bravado, but rather a shameful "Hey, I think I almost figured out how they made All You That You Can’t Leave Behind” approach to formulaic rock. The keyword here is "almost.” With the exception of the energetic opener "Please,” (Jesus, did Pop even have bravado?!) that still sounds like Sinclaire put through a ringer, Everything Is Ok is a Matchbox 20 fan’s wet dream; a collection of middle-of-the-road pop trash that is as likely to find a home on mainstream, alternative radio as much as it might turn up on nine to five, no-repeat workday, lite FM stations. Vocalist/guitarist Mike Walker croons like the bastard son of Rob Thomas and whoever that guy from that Train band is, while either he or a band-mate mimics the Edge’s guitar tone perfectly. All right, the U2 comparisons are growing tiresome perhaps, but Turn Off The Stars’ brand of soulless, teen-emo-meets-bad-stadium rock is truly an offensive and infuriating listen and surely one of the most contrived things I’ve ever heard. (Curve)