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Set Yourself On Fire

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iTunes Review

Stars’ elegant, orchestral indie rock rarely sounded as refined—or as effortlessly grand—as it did on Set Yourself on Fire, their third album. An exploration of romance in all its messy glory, Fire is a reminder that breaking up often leads to breaking down. And breaking down is usually the first step to starting over—a theme echoed in the album’s first line, delivered by singer Torquil Campbell’s father: “When there is nothing left to burn, you have to set yourself on fire.”

Customer Reviews

I Can't Find Words To Describe The Brilliance

This album is exceedingly brilliant. The bizarre techno background beats mixed with the wonderful strings, relentless guitar, fantastic percussion and amazing bass make this album tand out from anything I have heard in mainstream and indie today. The lyrics are touching, wonderful and can bring a tear to your eye or put a smile on your face in a single turn of phrase. From first chord to last, this album's fantastic voyage is one that can't be missed by anybody. Your Ex-Lover Is Dead: Such a great opening. Second best only too Neighborhood #1 on Funeral. 5* Set Yourself On Fire: The beautiful title track. Spectacular. 5* Ageless Beauty: Awesome. If you don't buy the album, at least listen to this track. 5* Reunion: It sounds like the Smashing Pumpkins' Today, but with a bigger heart. 5* The Big Fight: At firs, I could imagine Leslie Feist singing this song. Beautiful. 5* What I'm Trying to Say: Metaphorical of love for someone who had already found it. 5* One More Time: The strings in the opening are magnificent. Awesome track. 5* Sleep Tonight: This track is way too short. The lone trumpet is a nice touch. 5* The First Five Times: A really lovely song with interesting lyrics. 5* He Lied About Death: Very light-hearted track, despite the morbid title. 5* Celebration Guns: A song that reminds me of everything I've lost. 5* Soft Revolution: Fantastic song. The strings amaze me. 5* Calendar Girl: Finally a mainly keyboard driven track. A great conclusion. 5* This is my idea of perfection in an album. The strings, brass and other additional instruments along with the traditional guitar, bass and drum are fantastically used and lovely to listen too. This album, along with Funeral by Arcade Fire, Denali by Denali, Parachutes by Coldplay and Dark Side of the Moon by Pink Floyd are my idea of absolute perfection in music; albums I can listen to all day without boredom. I am very happy to have picked this up out of nowhere because it was on the Arts & Crafts label. If I hadn't, I might not have found such that brilliance existed in the music of 2005.

One of the Best Albums Ever.

If you have ever been in love, get this album. If you have ever lost your love, get this album. If you have ever simply considered falling in love, then you should already be listening. "Set Yourself on Fire" is brilliant. It's inspiring. It is delightful and sexy and powerful and sad and, most of all, beautiful. Opening with the powerful "Your Ex Lover is Dead", with its unresolved storyline that leaves one aching for more, SYOF takes us from unapologetic meetings of exes, to the back-and-forth of lovers who know their relationship is doomed, to the sweet and beautiful intimate moments of two people in love, to the inevitable war of those who cannot love each other any longer, to the final, only-slightly-resolved question of what is left in the end. If you have any heart at all, then Amy and Torq's incredible vocals will reach in and grip you, holding you in their thrall even after you've stopped listening. Honestly. Get this album and you will fall in love with it, because it will remind you of happier times and console you when you remember the heartbreak. It is brilliant, beautiful music, and is one of the reasons I am proud to be Canadian.

Your Ex-Lover is Dead

I only had to hear Your Ex-Lover is Dead once before I bought the album. The Stars have a cool indie sound, catchy tunes, and great lyrics.


Formed: 2001 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Sharing a fondness for sophisticated soul and pop artists like the Smiths, New Order, and Marvin Gaye, vocalist Torquil Campbell and keyboardist Chris Seligman formed Stars in Toronto. Along with friends Evan Cranley (also of Big Rude Jake) and Amy Millan (who contributed to the soundtrack for the film Drowning Mona), the band relocated to New York City before returning to Canada, this time settling in Montreal. Their debut full-length, Nightsongs, was released in early 2001 on Le Grand Magistery,...
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Set Yourself On Fire, Stars
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Customer Ratings