Picks and Pans Review: Inxs

UPDATED 01/09/2006 at 01:00 AM EST Originally published 01/09/2006 at 01:00 AM EST

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REVIEWED BY CHUCK ARNOLD
POP-ROCK

J.D. Fortune defeated all challengers on the reality show Rock Star to become the new lead singer of INXS, but now comes the real battle: taking on the ghost of Michael Hut chence. Turns out the Canadian frontman is exactly what the band needed for its first studio album since Hutchence committed suicide in 1997. Despite the change in personnel, Switch isn't so much a reversal for INXS as a return to the good, trashy fun that marked hits like “Need You Tonight.” On hooky, hot-blooded rockers such as “Perfect Strangers,” a guilt-free ode to one-night stands, it's like welcoming back old friends. With his smoldering swagger, the fine-voiced Fortune seems to be channeling Hutchence (as well as Jim Morrison), although he doesn't quite possess that same devil inside. Even so, when he pays tribute to his predecessor on the affecting ballad “God's Top Ten,” it's a bit of pop heaven.

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DOWNLOAD THIS: “God's Top Ten”

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