Having been befriended by Zach Braff after one of his songs was picked up for use in 'Scrubs', and having been personally requested to sing at the wedding of Ellen deGeneres and Portia de Rossi, it would seem that Joshua Radin has enough celebrity endorsements to be perfectly primed for global domination. Indeed, with his band of self-branded 'Whisper-Rock', the Ohio native may well elbow his way into the market currently dictated by the likes of John Mayer and Jack Johnson.
Yet like Mayer and Johnson, there's absolutely no distinguishing quality about Radin's music whatsoever. Almost every song on 'Simple Times' - his second album - maintains the same level, earnest demeanour as the guitarist plucks and murmurs his way through 33 minutes of utterly pedestrian songs. 'Sky' sees him joined by fellow singer-songwriter Meiko, and alt-country star Patty Griffin drops in for patronising, half-baked duet 'Growin' Up to Do', but neither add any life or atmosphere to what are simply generally dull songs.
Radin's lyrics are also in need of some fine-tuning; love song 'They Bring Me to You' is one of the worst offenders, with lines like "You look like the sun / I was the only one / Who could stare until you were done / Shining on me" inducing nausea levels to criminally dangerous degrees. Likewise, if someone wrote the hollow 'Friend Like You' for you, you'd probably be 'washing your hair' on social occasions a lot more often.
If Radin gave his songs a bit of welly instead of being encumbered by his self-imposed muted boundaries, he might be worth listening to. Let's face it - there's only so much "whisper-rock" you can take before you're driven to murderous screams.