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Morr Music's generous 2002 Slowdive tribute, Blue Skied an' Clear, did more than just officially induct shoegaze into the realm of synth pop influence; it also hinted at an entirely new direction for the label, one cemented largely by this debut from the anonymous Guitar. In the context of Morr's back catalog, it's certainly a departure -- where the label's prior releases had only ever sideways-referenced shoegaze's conceits, Sunkissed practically marinades in them, often to the point where it feels less like an experiment in useful cross-pollination and more like another naked homage. This is mostly problematic because the compositions themselves aren't particularly compelling -- never a fatal flaw in music like this, but certainly one more easily overlooked in the presence of any engaging dialogue between the Morr and shoegaze aesthetics. Unfortunately, with elements consisting exclusively of standard issue atmospherics, skittery beats, percussive guitar, and female vocals (contributed in equal parts by the spot-on Donna Regina and the interminably twee Japanese singer Ayako Akashiba), Sunkissed doesn't offer much indeterminate blessed-out prettiness that can't be had elsewhere with less effort expended.

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