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Starsabout: Longing For Home

Longing For Home is the second album from Poland's Starsabout, the band releasing their debut EP in 2014 before revealing the indie rock lite of Halflights two years later. With that album selling out its initial short, independent run, Progressive Promotions Records have offered an opportunity not only to catch up with this outfit's early output, but also to sample their latest wares, Longing For Home. If the band's first full length foray was happy to sit in an indie vein, with mere nods to something more progressive, Longing feels like a much more confident swipe of angst. Yes, they are still keeping things contained and confined within a tight perimeter of bound up emotion which is only released in small doses but there's a much more assured and single minded approach this time out. Interestingly, where you might expect that to mean that Starsabout have stretched their wings and are looking to broaden their horizons, in truth the opposite is true, Longing an album that finds this Polish outfit creating a much more defined identity of their own. Don't get me wrong, we're still playing within shimmering indie-rock walls here, but now there seems to be less willingness to chase other band's sounds or scenes and instead this album gets about the job of piecing together a melodic, enigmatic offering.

To be fair, if you're looking for an album crammed with excitement, then from its very name, you might well have garnered that Longing For Home isn't really working within that remit. Heartbreaking, relaxing, languid and contained, are words you could easily associate with the pinging title track and its gentle pinpricks of light, whereas "Cry Me No Tears" does a similar job but this time without even caring about offering light at the end of the tunnel. The ability of singer/guitarist Piotr Trypus and his guitar-mate Tomasz Kryjan to intertwine moody melody lines what allows the undoubtedly downbeat meanderings to not become too weighed down by their own emotion.

Quietly but effectively going about their business, bassist Piotr Ignatowicz and drummer Sergiusz Pruszy�"ski never get too caught up in offering complex asides or offshoots. Patience is key for the pair, the slow steady "Hourglass" benefiting hugely from the duo sticking neatly within a restrained framework. And yet, when the lengthy and most interesting closing piece, "Million Light Years", does offer the two a little more to do, the skill and dexterity they show makes their ability to keep it simple elsewhere all the more impressive.

Longing For Home is, for me, a considerable step up for Starsabout. The band's debut interesting without ever really delivering on the promise it clearly shows. Here however, things are taken up a few notches. A little more exuberance wouldn't go amiss and a few punchier moments would possibly help keep you fully tuned in as the enigmatic soundscapes play out, but it's no exaggeration to suggest that thankfully, the background music of the band's debut has evolved into something much more engaging and involving.

Track Listing
1. Blue Caress
2. Longing For Home
3. Cry Me No Tears
4. Hourglass
5. Stay
6. I Will Never
7. Thief
8. Million Light Years

Added: May 2nd 2018
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: Starsabout at bandcamp
Hits: 780
Language: english

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