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Jason Mraz

We Sing. We Dance. We Steal Things (Atlantic)

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Jason Mraz's first album in three years begins with predictably clean horn blasts and gentle tugs of guitar. Unfortunately, they put you right in the middle of what feels like a tacky father-daughter dance scene from a really bad movie. Worse, the coated-on glaze makes We Sing. We Dance. We Steal Things sound like a taking-it-easy guide for harried soccer moms. The first single, "I'm Yours," even adopts a mild tropical-island vibe that makes it suitable for sing-alongs. Mraz doesn't really find a groove until "Details in the Fabric," a sweet fingerpicking song that shows up halfway through the record and sounds like a leftover from his 2002 debut, Waiting for My Rocket to Come. Then it all sinks back into an overpolished, forgettable, and thoroughly unoriginal album. In "Details," Mraz sings, "Hold your own, know your name, and go your own way/And everything will be fine." If only he had followed his own advice.

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