Stars - The North
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Stars - The North

Today $10.81
Item #: 14363694
High Sellout Risk
    Personnel: Amy Millan (vocals, guitar); Torq Campbell (vocals, keyboards); Evan Cranley (guitar, trombone, synthesizer, percussion); Chris McCarron (guitar); Chris Seligman (French horn, piano, keyboards, synthesizer); Patty McGee (drums, percussion). ......more
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Artist: Stars
Personnel: Amy Millan (vocals, guitar); Torq Campbell (vocals, keyboards); Evan Cranley (guitar, trombone, synthesizer, percussion); Chris McCarron (guitar); Chris Seligman (French horn, piano, keyboards, synthesizer); Patty McGee (drums, percussion). Audio Mixer: Tony Hoffer. Recording information: 451; Breakglass Studio; Britannia Beach Bunker, BC; JC/DC, Vancouver; Mount Zoomer; Studio Victor. Over the course of a decade-plus of releasing albums, Stars have become the kind of band that is easy to forget. Not because they make forgettable music, far from it. They've maintained such a high level of quality for so long that they've become a reliable source of intelligent pop music with a giant, beating heart that has maybe, in a way, become too reliable for people who need to hear a new thing all the time. For anyone who just wants music they can count on to move them as they sing along, The North fits the bill just fine. Built as usual on the twin vocals of Torquil Campbell and Amy Milan and framed by a consistently interesting and well-constructed sound, the album does nothing to challenge their status as Canada's answer to Prefab Sprout or the Go-Betweens. Those two bands knew how to wring emotion out of smart chord changes and simple melodies, Stars are just as adept. The North offers no great changes from the last few records, veering between low-key electro pop, dramatic synth pop heartbreak beats, and sophisticated adult pop. After the slightly (relatively) unfocused The Five Ghosts though, this outing sounds very tightly constructed and somewhat more immediate. The songs have soaring choruses that strike immediately, Milan and Campbell turn in some of their finest vocal performances, and a couple songs rank among their best yet. To name two, the Milan-sung "Backlines" has a cutely bouncing '70s-rock feel, "Hold On When You Get Love and Let Go When You Give It" is a synth pop stunner with verses that would make New Order sweat and a chorus as majestic as a...
See Also:
In Our Bedroom, After the War, Heart
See Influences:
Pet Shop Boys, Madder Rose, Belly, Thompson Twins, The Cure, The Lemonheads, The House of Love, The Human League, Saint Etienne, Velocity Girl, The Sundays, The Smiths, The Housemartins
See Contemporaries:
Tegan and Sara, Georgie James, Arcade Fire, Badly Drawn Boy, Ivy, Au Revoir Simone, Metric, Momus, The Weakerthans, Saint Etienne, Broken Social Scene, Thievery Corporation, The Flaming Lips, The Hidden Cameras, Kevin Drew, Rosebuds (Rock), The Dears, Autour de Lucie, Belle & Sebastian, The Besnard Lakes, The Aluminum Group
Track Listing:
Disc 1:
  1. 1 Theory of Relativity, The
  2. 2 Backlines
  3. 3 North, The
  4. 4 Hold On When You Get Love and Let Go When You Give It
  5. 5 Through the Mines
  6. 6 Do You Want To Die Together?
  7. 7 Lights Changing Colour
  8. 8 Loose Ends Will Make Knots, The
  9. 9 Song is a Weapon, A
  10. 10 Progress
  11. 11 400, The
  12. 12 Walls
Rock & Pop
ATO Records
Marcus Paquin; Graham Lessard; Stars
Number of Discs:
Compact Disc
Mono or Stereo:
SPARS Coding:
43 : 52
Editorial Reviews:
Q (Magazine) (p.110) - 3 stars out of 5 -- "[With] smart, sophisticated hooks that remain just the right side of being overly twee and sentimental." Paste (magazine) - "THE NORTH offers the same sense of depth and darkness that first propelled the five-piece into the limelight with singles like 'Ageless Beauty' and 'Your Ex-Lover is Dead,' but with an increased sense of awareness and age."
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