Kendall Sallay and Dirk Millotz, who together make Starover Blue, met nearly a decade ago at San Jose State’s music department. The duo, since then, has been evolving and expanding their cool, airy style of dream-pop, inching closer to perfection with each release. On their 16 track, space-themed epic, Spacegeist we see the duo at the height of their strength.
The music on Spacegeist combines synthetic sound with dream-pop’s lush and familiar rock instrumentation to create layered soundscapes that feel chilling and surrounding. While an ever-present Juno 106 (1984 synthesizer) lends the mix some nostalgia, hazy guitar melodies and meticulous drum-fills paint a vibrantly surreal picture.
There’s no better introduction to Starover Blue than the album’s title-track where the dim guitar and the droning synths melt into one another to produce a gorgeously haunting atmosphere through which Kendall Sallay’s lulling melody cuts through gently. The track feels faraway and desolate. “Shield me, hide me/ I don’t want to be seen” the singer sings, giving voice to the desire for seclusion that we all feel sometimes.
Such moments of lyrical sentimentality are common occurrences on Spacegeist. Throughout the album, we see Kendall as emotionally vulnerable and even desperate. The fifth track, Into the Labyrinth, stands out in that respect, telling us of a relationship beset with fear and insecurity. “Help me please, say anything/ To ease this nagging feeling/ All this while I’m down and out/ I love your sympathy” Kendall’s voice rings.
Favorite Track: Spacegeist
1. Lights of Tomorrow
3. Summer Snow
5. Into the Labyrinth
7. Deus Ex Machina
8. Old Believer
11. Twelve Tides
13. Golden Hour
14. The Last Rose
15. A Flower in Space
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