Various Artists: Fast Times at Ridgemont High

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ImageIt may be Fast Times at Ridgemont High, but that movie’s soundtrack makes for pretty slow going as a two-record set. The album’s compilers do deserve credit for using previously unreleased material from a wide variety of mostly noteworthy artists, including the Go Gos, Stevie Nicks and Poco; and there are amiable moments here, such as a sensitive ballad from former Eagle Don Henley and a nearly a cappella remake of the Tymes’ “So Much in Love” by Timothy B. Schmit, another ex-Eagle. On the other hand, “I Don’t Know” finds Jimmy Buffett forsaking all that makes him special in favor of a faceless, mainstream rock sound; Jackson Browne’s “Somebody’s Baby” ranks with his most prosaic and lightweight numbers to date; and acts like Billy Squier, Joe Walsh and Quarterflash also disappoint.

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