Stars is a Canadian indie pop band signed to the Arts & Crafts label. Originally formed in Toronto in 1998 by vocalist Torquil Campbell and keyboardist Chris Seligman, the band relocated to New York City and then subsequently to Montreal. The band also includes singer-guitarist Amy Millan and bassist Evan Cranley. Drummer Pat McGee has toured with the band for years, despite not appearing on their albums until the release of Set Yourself on Fire.
The band’s breakthrough single was Ageless Beauty, from their 2004 album Set Yourself on Fire. While released to minimal fanfare in Canada in October of 2004, Set Yourself on Fire slowly gained a strong following and critical praise soon after its 8 March 2005 U.S. release.
Millan, Campbell and Cranley are also members of the indie band Broken Social Scene; Seligman, although uncredited, has contributed to past Broken Social Scene albums. Millan has since embarked on a solo career, releasing a record entitled Honey from the Tombs in July 2006. Campbell has a side-project with friend Chris Dumont entitled Memphis; their latest album, A Little Place In The Wilderness, was released in August 2006.
On their website, they have noted that their name was chosen, by coincidence, without prior knowledge of the short-lived project by Syd Barrett. They have cited a wide variety of musical likes and influences ranging from Berlioz to OutKast, citing among others Barrett, Paddy McAloon, New Order, The Smiths, Brian Wilson and Momus. They covered The Smiths’ This Charming Man on 2001’s Nightsongs and The Pogues’ Fairytale of New York in 2005. Other indie artists have been guest collaborators on many of their tracks, especially for an early period including the release of their first LP.