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EVERCLEAR – Invisible Stars CD

| 10 September 2012 | Reply

By Shane Pinnegar

Opener Tiger In A Burning Tree makes it abundantly clear that Art Alexakis is back on form after a few lacklustre albums which failed to live up to Everclear’s “Big Two” – 1995’s “Sparkle & Fade” and 1997 “So Much For The Afterglow”.

“Invisible Stars” gets pretty close to those two albums, with Alexakis deftly combining idiosyncratic tunes, catchy hooks and sunny, positive tales that are never too far from the darkness of life’s underbelly.

Be Careful What You Ask For cautions that “we are all invisible stars – we burn out in the dark” and “life looks better, when you look the other way – do yourself a favour, and look away”. His greatest talent has always been to turn the darkness in his and our lives into something positive, yet still cautionary.

In Santa Ana Wind, Alexakis states “I’m like everyone – I have ghosts in my eyes that will never go away” and it seems absolute that he is at his creative best when searching for something better, even though he often realises before the ends of his tales that “this is where I’m supposed to be”.

The touching double of Wishing (“please don’t leave me”) and I Am Better Without You will resonate with anyone who’s been through a bad breakup then realised we were better off on the other side (and haven’t we all?)

His songs will have you believe he is a tortured soul, but a nicer, more accommodating and open person you might never talk to. This contradiction may be at the heart of his talent, fuelling his soul searching, and to his credit even his saddest, darkest songs are looking forwards, onwards and upwards, always reaching towards the sunlight.

This is nowhere more evident than on Jackie Robinson, a tale of racial injustice and inequality punctuated by the phrase “you gotter be bigger than the hate, you gotta be better than the pain – you gotta beat em at their own game, just like Jackie Robinson”, referencing the first black Baseball player to be inducted into the hall of fame.


Category: CD Reviews

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