Album Reviews

Music You Don't Know You Like Yet

Star Anna

Go To Hell

2013-11-21

FCC TRACK: #10 "Smoke Signals"

The root of Star Anna's alt-country tunes were born in the dynamic epicenter of Seattle's grunge movement. This is evident by Pearl Jam vet Mike McCready stating that she is an "American original," and infamously sinewy Guns 'n' Roses bassist Duff McKagan vouching that she's "the real deal." But what exactly inspired the audaciously blunt title behind her 2013 release? Go To Hell is the product of Star's personal battles during the making of the album, the songs all centered around the idea of "telling off your past demons and poisoned relationships and forging ahead, picking yourself up and showing the world you're stronger than that." 

Informed of this, Go To Hell is a record that sounds raw and powerful despite its polished production, Star's voice piercing the veil and drawing influences from americana roots, poppier folk fare, and in rare moments, the grit of punk rock (album closer "Smoke Signals" most obviously). There's even a whimsically twangy cover of Tom Waits' "Come on up to the House," and it's a hell of a fun ride. On the strongest tracks of Go To Hell, we hear Star Anna struggling with the balance of anger and forgiveness, the tough dichotomy of one's behaviors between being a fighter in self-defense, and allowing vulnerability to love and be loved. It's refreshing when an artist can effectively write their passion without sounding self-important or disingenuous, and Star Anna does just that effortlessly.

Recommended Tracks: #1 "For Anyone", #5 "Mean Kind of Love", #9 "Come on up to the House"

Sigmund Steiger

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Compiled by the WYCE Journalism Club

The opinions expressed in these reviews are those of the individual volunteers that submitted the article and do not necessarily reflect the views of WYCE or GRCMC; nor its staff, donors, or affiliates.