The Stares are an easy obsession to acquire. The voices of songwriters Angie Benintendi and Drew Whittemore lead you with eyes fixated on some distant invisible expanse, treading so slowly, so beautifully, through landscapes familiar, but sprinkled with some kind of heavy magical realism that just can’t be described. “Americana” maybe, but with roots so deep in the earth that there’s no geography that could ever really contain it; these songs seem to simply be rising up out of themselves. Well, wherever they come from, you cannot help but be drawn into their shadowy landscape. There’s no question: your first encounter with this music will be one you’ll remember. Forever.
“To say their sound is a rare find in this town is a laughable understatement.”
— Jeff Rush, Tablet
official website for the stares.
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|Spine to Sea
(WoM 022) - 2005
From Seattle, the Stares are a four piece with aforementioned vocalists/songwriters Drew and Angie on guitar and electric piano/keyboards respectively, and Don McGreevy on bass and Jason Merculief on drums. This ensemble is filled out with string and woodwind arrangements by Eyvind Kang, who authored along similar lines for the latest Blonde Redhead CD, Misery is a Butterfly. But we have to say, as great as that was he absolutely outdid himself on this one. Their debut album is supported further by an auxillary team of various Seattle music legends herded under the Stares roof by Randall Dunn, the records production wizard. The end result of all these people’s effort is so rewarding we are having a hard time containing ourselves as we try and “sell” it to you. In any case, we don’t necessarily expect the Stares to be sticking around on our label for long, as there is no question that they will be attracting some major attention. But we are thrilled as hell to be putting out this, their glorious first album, Spine to Sea. Promise to remember where you heard them first...
- Disconnected Again
- 8,000 Feet
- Killing Time
- From the Sky [mp3]
- 1 2 3 [mp3]
- On Repeat
- Fine Arts
- Forget the Souvenirs [mp3]