Friends successfully targets the same demographic of the television show -- twentysomethings that have grown too old for the noise and clutter of college life, yet reluctant to give up the commraderie (and, indeed, friendship) that stress creates. So, it's a collection of '80s college rock favorites (R.E.M., Paul Westerberg), '80s college rock founding fathers (Pretenders, Lou Reed), and '90s artists that don't really have that much to do with '80s college rock but they're mellow and inoffensive and appear to be genuine since they strum acoustic guitars. In other words, bands like Hootie And The Blowfish. So, most of the album sounds pleasant and upwardly mobile. Apart from the distracting snatches of dialogue, there is nothing to break the flow or engage your attention.
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AllMusic Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine