Stars‘ focus to human drama and deep hope have left me madly in love since I first discovered the band several years ago. Set Yourself On Fire, their last album, was my favourite of 2005 and their new release is a contender for this year.
In Our Bedroom After The War is a refinement of the rich songcraft Stars have honed on previous releases. Vocally focused, musically expansive and lyrically sparse and narrative, these songs are as dramatic, head-sticking and emotional as any the band has released, marking their best work to date, a real achievement after their incredible last effort.
In part, the album focuses on the hope we can have after disaster. The title track bares that optimism in the face of strife, whether personal or of the greater world, and demonstrates the band’s unflinching facing of the best and worst of us. Passion, caring, destitution, despair, “life and love and death and sex” are distilled here in the glowing and aching songs. Free from irony, and brimming with earnestness, this is rare music. It captures all the lowness and greatness of our lives with a beauty that is inhabited with such obvious passion that I can’t help but be moved with each listen. So rarely is this attitude found at all, but when injected into some of the finest music being made today, it’s a real treasure.
Here’s the video for the album’s first single, “Take Me To The Riot”.
Forget your name, forget your fear.