QuickLook Music: The Northstar Session

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The sound of The Northstar Session, a band from Bend Oregon that is now reportedly calling Los Angeles home, is vanilla. That sounds like bad news, but it isn’t, since when I say “vanilla,” I mean the creamy, melt in your mouth sort of vanilla, not that month old back of the freezer crap. Listeners will not only be forced to forgive Northstar’s commitment to tradition, they’ll come to revel in it.
For example, Northstar has drawn quite a few comparisons to Wilco, but they’re far less “artsy” and experimental, more concerned with producing radio friendly riffs and relatable lyrics than two minute long distortion solos. Granted, they probably draw from some similar influences, but its hard to imagine that “You are always on my mind, always on my mind!” shares too much similar territory with “When the devil came, he was not red! He was chrome, and he said ‘come with me!’”
Kane McGee, the drummer, didn’t mince words about the band’s purpose in an interview with Glide Magazine. “What we are doing is trying to sell a product.” Kane presumably reads a lot of Ayn Rand, but later in the Glide interview, bandmate Basaraba seems to contradict him. “The whole point is to spread music to people.” he says, easily.
Northstar Session has been doing just that. One of their songs played on NBC’s Parenthood recently, and their new album, Late Bloomer, is up for download. They’ve been touring as well, versatilely switching back and forth from acoustic to electric sets, producing studio albums and feeding a growing fan base. They’ve already made a considerable splash, and its safe to say that their wave-making days have only just begun.


Writes primarily as a means of avoiding eye contact.