Owl City: Ocean Eyes

Ocean Eyes is the second studio album from the Postal Service — except no one in that group had anything to do with it. Actually, the work comes from Owl City, a project helmed by Owatonna, Minnesota’s 23-year-old Adam Young. By aping the Postal Service’s Ben Gibbard’s trademark “Who, me, glum?” vocals, and producer Jimmy Tamborello’s jingle-jangle synth sound, Young became a MySpace sensation in a short period of time, won a deal with Universal Republic and moved out of his parents’ basement. While Ocean Eyes tracks like “Hello Seattle,” “Cave In” and “Umbrella Beach” are contagious, pure pop specimens that waste no time reaching full sprint, the lyrics (“Golf and alcohol don’t mix/And that’s why I don’t drink and drive”) are mostly throwaways. But as blatantly derivative as Ocean Eyes is, it’s difficult not to fall for the disc — if only because Gibbard and Co. haven’t released an album since 2003. (Universal Republic) 3 stars out of 5