At long last, one of the bigger rock releases in the U.K. finds its way to the States.

At long last, one of the bigger rock releases in the U.K. finds its way to the States. Starsailor is one of those wonderfully rare bands that manages to be gentle and sensitive while also rocking admirably. Working under the firm guidance of famed producer Osborne (U2, Radiohead), Starsailor offers a tasty stylistic hybrid of fellow U.K. outfits Travis and Radiohead, with tunes that are, by turns, earthy and ethereal. Enigmatic frontman James Walsh has a heartbreaking way with a mournful lyric, though he occasionally slips into deep melodrama. Overall, though, his creakingly emotional voice injects a bluesy quality into tunes like "Tie Up My Hands," "Way to Fall," and "Poor Misguided Fool." It's difficult to predict how radio will react to Starsailor. Quite frankly, the band is smarter than 90% of those currently filling the airwaves. Of course, given an adventurous programmer or two, Love Is Here could be one of the first deserving hits of 2002. —LF