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Representing The Bay
Best Seen with "Explorer"
Sail's through San Francisco
......Many comparisons have
been drawn to Jeff Buckley's influence on both Starsailor, the band, and its
21-year-old singer/songwriter James Walsh. While it's clear the vocal stylings
are similarly dark and emotional, and maybe these young Brits did, in fact,
grown up listening to Buckley records, I argue the creative commonality ends
there. Britain's newest hit makers are fast forming a style and a following all
record, Love Is Here, is more musically charming than Travis, more bright and
inspiring than Radiohead, and stands as a better written collection of songs
than anything I've heard from Jeff Buckley. "Tie Up My Hands" kicks
the record off in true Brit Pop fashion.
......Their live show at the Fillmore in San Francisco
began with the clear piano chord of their current single 'Alcoholic' the crowd
were reverentially enthusiastic before being stunned almost to silence by the
power and underlying fragility of singer James Walsh's voice.
.....Starsailor moved with swift confidence
through much of their debut album, 'Love Is Here'. Walsh's voice adding emotional
edge to some of the albums lesser songs, which do lie in between the
spectacular claustrophobic acoustic numbers such as first single 'Fever' and
the roaring northern soul of the pacier crowd pleasers. James Stelfox (bass)
and Ben Byrne (drums) provide a solid and slightly funky rhythm section.
Keyboard player Barry Westhead is also essential in creating deeper and more
interesting textures within the bands music and in being a foil for Walsh,
alleviating the pressure of his single guitar duties, allowing him a soundscape
upon which he can really test his superb voice. When drifting acoustic guitars
and harmonizing bass lines eventually give way to a brooding chorus reminiscent
of Coldplay. "Poor Misguided Fool" picks things up further,
continuing the strumming acoustics but adding beautifully haunting piano lines.
Walsh's vocals exude a powerfully clean and well-rehearsed vibe, keeping each
song fresh and interesting. It's the subtle strings, lush piano and domineering
vocals, unique ability to lift your spirits above a level you thought
conventional Brit Pop . Keep Starsailor near the top of your CD stack this
Winter .Starsailor is the next big thing hanging excruciatingly heavy on their
shoulders it's just a matter of time that they will be next to be on top.
Starsailor continue's their European tour throughout November - checkout the
By Randy Cohen
........This is the Official Rock Publication Web Site
All photos and written material courtesy of Rock Publication
.Copyright © 2002
|| The Band:
|James Walsh vocals/guitar James Stelfox - bass
Barry Westhead keyboards Ben
Byrne - drums
SET LIST: Alcoholic * Poor Misguided Fool * She Just
Wept * Fever * Way to Fall Coming Down * Acoustic Bit * Lullaby * Love Is Here
* Good Souls * Tie Up My Hands