Album Remarks & Appraisals:
Guster's playful yet literate, spirited and largely acoustic pop-rock returns with the endearing college favorite's first studio album in three years. Ganging Up On The Sun produced by Ron Aniello [Lifehouse, Barenaked Ladies and Guster's previous album, Keep It Together], the band, and new member Joe Pisapia retains the unconventional, melodic pop craftsmanship and flawless harmonies that have garnered Guster one of the most devoted fan followings in the country. Guster brightens up the summer with Ganging Up On The Sun.
Spin (p.84) - 3 stars out of 5 -- "[T]he now incorporate Echoplex and swirling organs. With the bands' pop instincts craftier than ever..."
Entertainment Weekly (p.69) - "GANGING UP is both expansive and dreamy, while the track RUBY FALLS comes off as positively psychedelic..." -- Grade: B+
Alternative Press (p.218) - 4 out of 5 -- "[L]ayers of rich sound -- barroom piano, crunchy guitars, billowing horns and muted keyboards -- envelop SUN's songs with warmth."
Guster: Ryan Miller, Adam Gardner (vocals, guitar); Joe Pisapia (various instruments); Brian Rosenworcel (percussion).
Don't waste your time listening for bongos here. GANGING UP ON THE SUN sees Guster moving far beyond the groovy college-radio reputation that made them such campus favorites. Admittedly, there are still a few bongos, but this disc continues the progression begun on KEEP IT TOGETHER into a realm of eclectic, countrified guitar-pop.
"Satellite" opens with a strummed acoustic guitar, bubbling bass lines, and a snaking keyboard riff before Ryan Miller's moody melody enters. Before the song is done, there will be distorted guitars, harmonica, organ, and as rich a sound as Guster has achieved so far. "One Man Wrecking Machine" is a nostalgic lament anchored by a full drum kit, with chunky guitar lines and a perfect alt/indie chorus. This album presents a dizzying variety of new faces for the band, all connected by Guster's melodic pop instincts and quirky sensibility.