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  A Sky With No Stars  
  Ghost Records  
Release Date:
Reviewed by:
  Indoor Miner  

Don't be fooled by the name. Canadians aren't Canadian at all, which is perhaps ironic seeing as almost every other band you read about these days are. No, Canadians hail from Verona, Italy, although as Chicago born Holly Beth Simpson called her new wave band Holly & The Italians, liberties have obviously been taken before.

A Sky With No Stars is the band's debut album, and it opens strongly with the title track's pounding beat. Unfortunately, however, too much of it comes across as too generic indie, with more than a touch of Theme from Friends over-cheerfulness about it. 15th Of August is a case in point, although in fairness it has got a strong chorus, something which could also be said of Summer Teenage Girl. And seeing as much of A Sky With No Stars sounds like one big melting pot of early 90s "indie" (being choc full of fairly melodic, thrashy guitars), it's perhaps no surprise that that despite a Beach Boys reference, the band they sound most like on one of the best numbers here, Find Out Your 60's, are The Boo Radleys. This might not necessarily be a bad thing as The Boo Radleys certainly had their moments, but it's not exactly looking to the future either.

The next few tracks aren't bad either though. Out Of Order is fairly strong melodically, whilst the stomping Last Revenge Of The Nerds slows down nicely to an almost Sigur Ros-like bit with high pitched vocals and prominent tom toms towards the end. Venus, meanwhile, opens with a slightly dreamy verse and strings, although the way it builds does feel a touch unnecessary. The highlight of the album for me though is probably The North Side Of Summer, which has a nice shoe-gazey feel and a Sigur Ros-like tune, topped off with some nice "ooh's" on the background, before it builds to a thrashy conclusion. Well worth a listen…

However, whilst much of A Sky With No Stars proved to be growers, the album peters out somewhat at this point with the band saying little on Love Story On The Moon, Ode To The Season or the six minute closer Good News that they hadn't said already. Still, this is the band's first album and there's certainly some promise here.

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