Stars shine on
Nearly 20 years in, all the Montreal love-poppers are looking for is connection.
singing more than she ever has on past records (a welcome addition)—and it also marked the first time the band handed a set of songs over to a producer, rather than co-producing.
“We’ve been a band for coming up on 20 years. I think it’s important for us to be challenged by someone outside our circle. It’s like a family, right? You sort of fall into the same roles and regress,” says Millan. “When there’s someone else in the room, they demand more from you and you’re not allowed to fall into your same patterns.”
Producer Peter Katis was the sound alchemist of choice. “Peter has this kind of magical hand. He’s able to massage a song into a place of unbelievable depth with these very small movements,” Millan says.
“I really like the sadder side of Stars,” says Katis. It’s an unsurprising statement from the longtime Interpol collaborator who also crafted a number of records with The National, including High Violet. Katis adds he was given a lot of creative room, sometimes even looping a scrap of song until he built the perfect base.
“Sometimes young bands are just harder to work with because they’re less adventurous. Sometimes, bands can just care too much, while a band that’s been around for awhile [like Stars] has already gone through all those emotions and all those things and they’re more open-minded,” he says of the year-long recording process.
“Our underlining mantra has always been about finding connection—about how people connect and how they disconnect—and I think with the process of becoming older...we don’t really have all the answers anymore,” Millan says. “Mostly I just feel a sense of pride of the longevity of my friendships and the music with my band.”
Stars will visit Halifax for the first time in a couple years.