Stellar* - Something Like Strangers
30 Sep 2006 // A review by johnsoncraigsbc
Stellar seem to have taken a softer approach in making their new album, Something Like Strangers, which in turn has created a lazy Sunday album which you can have playing in the back ground from start to finish.
Andy Lovegroove provides additional vocals in the beautiful duet which is 'For A While'. These songs have nice, slow beats which have a tendency to build up into a climactic bridge which make good use of the keyboards and guitars.
‘Take A Girl is one of the heavier songs on the album. Although the chorus is slightly louder than the rest of the album, it ties in with the rest of the album well via the melodic versus. It has a country and folk element to it, which works in extremely well with the choruses and versus. The keyboard melodies are fantastic and could almost send you to sleep.
The television proud single ‘Whiplash’ also makes a dominant stance in the opening stages of the album. The radio friendly single invites us to listen on as we know the quality of the songs is consistent.
‘High’ is probably the ‘it’ ballad of the whole album. The drumming in this song is not overtly obvious, but their presences make for an indescribable ambience in the song. The lyrical qualities of the songs are also pretty decent for a band of such popularity. As a lot of mainstream female led have some pretty woeful lyrics, but these are held up pretty well.
Taking a turn for the quieter since their single ‘Violent’, it doesn’t seem as though they have tried extremely hard to become a more melodic band, but has just come naturally as they progress and develop as a band. As a whole, this is a great album. It is a good showcase of a band that knows how to play effectively to each written song in order to create a certain mood. It also shows how they have matured and extended as a band. This album is the perfect lazy Sunday CD to sit back and relax to during those summer months or the cold winter days.
Stellar* – the hits – 'Violent', 'Part Of Me', 'Every Girl', 'Undone', 'What You Do', 'All It Takes', 'One More Day' – the list goes on and on. Their 1999 debut album 'Mix' set New Zealand’s radio waves alight, and Stellar* quickly became Sony Music’s biggest selling kiwi band. The acclaim wasn’t just sales based, with Stellar* securing eight Tui Awards for 'Mix' and its 2001 follow up 'Magic Line'.
Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Stellar*
After 'Magic Line' the band took some time out for expansion – singer Boh Runga went to live in Los Angeles to hone her skills as a songwriter:
"The opportunity came up to base myself in LA. My publisher introduced me to working songwriters over there, people who were writing for artists like Christina Aguilera, Meatloaf and Ricky Martin."