B&E: Stars

Breaking & Entering: A look at acts breaking at radio and retail and entering Billboard charts. This week: Stars.

Profiling acts breaking at radio and/or retail and entering Billboard's charts.

What could be a better way to follow up a 2004 alternative album of the year Juno Award nomination than with a 2005 win in the same category? Stars, a quartet from Montreal, hopes to do just that with its latest album, "Set Yourself on Fire."

Released in the March 8 in the United States on the Arts & Crafts label, the set debuted at No. 34 on Billboard’s Top Heatseekers chart and No. 40 on Top Independent Albums list.

The group credits its third album to a winter of drinking, smoking, fighting and falling apart, but the end result is a melodic collection of dreamy-pop. Song titles like "Your Ex-Lover is Dead," "The Big Fight" and "Celebration Guns" seem contradictory when listening to singer/guitarist Amy Millan's soft, soothing voice and the smooth harmonies that pervade many of the tracks.

The quartet also pulled in drummer Pat McGee for the keyboards, French horn, trumpet and trombone that appear on several tracks.

Stars moved to Arts & Crafts for its third release after the success of second album, "Heart," on Paper Bag Records. The group is on tour in North America through May.

The video for "Ageless Beauty" can be seen on Stars' web site, where the entire new album is available for streaming.

Artist: www.arts-crafts.ca/stars
Label: www.arts-crafts.ca