Sunday, December 6, 2009

Record Review: Star & Micey

Star & Micey is just the second release from upstart label Ardent Music, and what a start it is. For obvious reasons, much has been made of the guest stars that appear on this record. Both Luther Dickinson (of the Black Crowes) and Jody Stephens (of Big Star) make their presence known, but Star and Micey have carved out their very own sound and soon, I suspect, will be getting by on their own name recognition.

On first listen it is apparent that a lot of Star & Micey's sound can be traced back to the southern roots tradition, however, subsequent listens prove a sound that is expansive and incredibly diverse. The opening track, "Salvation Army Clothes," comes straight from the heart via the Mississippi Delta and is reminiscent of Nicklecreek. "My Beginning" is a throwback to the Motown pop hits of the 60's while, "On Your Own," is a beautiful, contemplative tune that explodes into the type of anthemic chorus that I won't be surprised to find filling stadiums one day. There are even moments on their self-titled record where a Brit-Pop influence sneaks in and Star & Micey come off like apocalyptic noise-makers, Muse, but mercifully, without all the noise. Every ounce of fat has been trimmed off of these songs so that what you're left with is very tasty indeed. "Carly," a radio-ready Poptart that clocks in at 4:38, is the longest song on the album by a full minute.

Apart from Star & Micey's musical stylings, lead singer Joshua Cosby has a smooth-as-butter delivery so much so that if you were to walk into a room and hear a Star & Micey song at the right moment, you might mistake it for a lost Michael Jackson tune. At other times, Cosby comes off like a more rootsy Maroon 5.

Don't be surprised to find these guys all over the radio in the near future. That said, you should check them out now so you'll have bragging rights one day when everyone else is talking about them.

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  1. Thanks for the very nice review. I agree about Star & Micey "carving out their own sound." That's what I love about this band, they definitely have their own sense about who they are. Karen Mulford, the artist that created the album cover, is so visually in tune with the band...kind of like Klaus Voormann catching the right visual message for The Beatles Revolver LP cover. Thanks again.

    Jody Stephens

  2. Thanks Jody, I appreciate the kind words. I was very impressed with what I heard! I also had the same thoughts about the art work - it's fantastic! Oh and Big Star rules by the way!

  3. I was wondering if Jody might have more information about Karen Mulford. After reading his comment I googled her but couldn't really find much. Has she done any other record art or children's books, etc.?

  4. Anonymous7/12/09 21:46

    She's only done Star & Micey's album art and has a children's book, but it hasn't been published. She has a facebook page

  5. Anonymous8/12/09 03:39

    Love the CD! Excellent, upbeat yet diverse tunes, tells a nice story. I will not be ditching it like salvation army clothes that's for sure.

  6. Anonymous8/12/09 17:06

    This is fantastic mr. fox! Thank you for being our friend and welcome to our family!!!

    ((((two penguins are walking across an iceberg. the first says to the second penguin "you look like you're wearing a tuxedo." to which the second penguin replies "maybe i am." ))))
    : )

    -nick (star and micey)