Inside the Other Days
First Appeared at The Music Box, January 2002, Volume 9, #1
Written by John Metzger
There's no question that Star City's lead singer Jason Lewis sounds an awful lot like Gram Parsons. At times, it can be downright eerie, made all the more so by Lewis' lyrics — haunted echoes of life that reflect Parsons in every way. Rabbit Scared finds a father-to-be fleeing from both his past and his future; Icarus Turn paints a black and white photograph of a man down on his luck and at death's door; and It's Not Love Anymore captures a couple no longer wanting to be together, but too afraid to go it alone. Bleak songs, indeed.
Yet, there are moments scattered throughout Inside the Other Days when Star City shows that despite its lyrics, the band is not just another alt-country outfit pushing sorrow through an alcohol-soaked haze. Instead, the group injects a healthy dose of breezy pop into its songs, helping to lift them above their somber, melancholic tones. For example, Again's struggle with addiction is framed in the peaceful, hopeful strains of John Lennon's Imagine; Town and Country's crumbling relationship is turned into an ebullient, majestic refrain; and It's Not Love Anymore bounds over its sprightly keyboards and Eagles-like harmonies with utter glee. Consequently, Star City manages to escape what could have been a monotonous stream of somber songs, thereby allowing Inside the Other Days ultimately to become a bit more accessible. Make no mistake — the disc is nowhere near the realm of Wilco's Summerteeth, but for the time being at least, Star City has ventured onto the same sonically rewarding path.
1 Star: Pitiful
2 Stars: Listenable
3 Stars: Respectable
4 Stars: Excellent
5 Stars: Can't Live Without It!!
Copyright © 2001 The Music Box