Wednesday, November 17, 2010


For years the Canadian outfit of Stars have been cranking out music. Yet, over time the story of the band has gotten changed and interpreted in various ways, it has become like a big version of the telephone game via the internet. As the band released the beautiful, Five Ghosts earlier this year and have been wowing crowds around the world with their fun and lavish live shows. 2010 was a year that had made Stars shine. From packed performances at this summer's Lollapalooza festival to a massive headlining tour, Five Ghosts have carried Stars into the big light where they belong. We had a chance to speak with the main man behind Stars to Torquil Campbell as he explained the process of Five Ghosts, Canada's current music boom and how some of the band have been featured in Broken Social Scene and how some are not...take a look at our interview with Torquil below.

What was it like making Five Ghosts?

Long, hard, sad, beautiful, friendly, messy, boring and fascinating...a lot like life.

Where did the title of the record come from?

The number five has been haunting us for a while. and I think because of all that happened to us last year, birth and death and motion of all kinds, that ghosts just seemed to be everywhere. And when we looked closer, there were five of them...

Being in both Stars and Broken Social Scene was it daunting making this record while being in both bands?

I’m not in broken in that way. I just play idiot in the broken social scene. You don’t have to do anything but make a few jokes to play that.

What the reason for some of you to break from Broken Social Scene to do this project almost 10 years ago?

That is not in any way what happened. Stars existed before broken social scene ever was around. We had an album out before they existed. we are not a broken social scene side project. But you know, something gets written in a blog enough, it becomes truth, and there's nothing we can do about that I guess.

The name of the band was inspired by a short lived Syd Barrett project?

No it wasn't

Was his work in Floyd and major influence on you?

I love Syd Barrett...but no it wasn't....

Your music is very colorful and active, who are some of your influences?

New Order, Smiths, Marvin Gaye, Saint Etienne, Modest Mussorgsky, Junior Boys, Husker Du, Beyonce, Soft Cell, Cabaret Voltaire, Converge, Everything But The Girl, Prefab Sprout

You relocated to New York for a while then ended up back in Canada. Did the city influence your work in any way?


Why the move back to the Mother land?

A lot of reasons. Amy and Evan couldn’t be in New York legally, and we wanted to be somewhere where we wouldn’t have to work constantly to earn the rent. MontrĂ©al is a place where you can still find cheap jam space and the community rule is that you support each other. its a great place to be an artist....

With Broken Social Scene and its break away acts such as yourselves, Feist and fellow Canadian bands like Arcade Fire, Black Mountain and Holy Fuck to name a few. Canada has become an indie powerhouse. What is it like knowing that you and your country are contributing to scene that is gaining global attention?

Feist did not break away from the broken social scene! Not everyone was waiting for the broken social scene to form so they could have music careers! She had already put an album out before broken existed and had been in several bands! come on man...BSS is amazing but they aren’t responsible for everything good coming out of Canada/everyone individually has to work hard to get their things done, and everyone has. Including all the beautiful people in broken. but its unfair to Feist, (who is waaaaaay bigger then BSS) and to us and to Jason Collette and everyone else in the band that releases their own music to place them as nothing but a side project.

Being apart of two influential bands, do you have fans come up and tell you that you have influenced them?


How does that make you feel?

Incredibly proud and grateful. its an amazing thing to know that the music you've made has communicated with people you don't know, and of course there were so many bands that did that for us.

What is the best thing about being in this band?

Getting to be in business with people I’ve known and loved all my life. And the catch phrases....