A Wayward Word's Worth

November 3, 2010

Ghost Songs, Ghost Stories

Filed under: Uncategorized — kylelawrence @ 12:39 pm

Stars use roses to thank their fans, and desperate, haunting words to relate to them. By Kyle Mullin for Edmonton’s See Magazine, October 28 2010

The rose has long since bloomed — now it’s uprooted, clenched and swung to come crashing down. For indie symphonists Stars those flowers are literally the most delicate  drumsticks, bursting with the beat in a flurry of pedals.

Drummer Pat McGee often uses roses to pelt out his rhythms during concerts, and  keyboardist Chris Seligman will grip the same stems to tap out gentle harmonies, before singers Amy Millan and Torquil Campbell hurl bouquets as gifts from the stage toward the open arms of their audience. In those moments Stars (which also includes bassist  Evan Cranley) aren’t mere indie rockers, but fragrant vagrants embracing their shows’ sweet scents and sounds as if that’s all they have left to lose, with everything else to gain.

“I like roses because they make the stage ours,” says singer Amy Millan. “And they smell pretty, when you’re around a lot of black boxes, like amps that have been in storage, things can smell bad. So a rose’s scent really helps.”

That lingering aroma can cling to their clothes, trail them like a fading memory or even a heavenly haunting spirit. It’s a sentiment that laces every note and even the name of Stars’ latest album, The Five Ghosts.

“I’m very superstitious. I can’t discuss ghosts anymore, I need to talk about life,” Millan says. “But when you’re running through those songs on stage it’s no longer about us, it’s about the audience. (Singing) ‘Dead Heart’ is great because the whole audience is singing it with us. So it’s not about a dead heart but about being alive, and sharing that with our fans and their ghosts — not mine.”




Ghost Songs, Ghost Stories


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