Monqui Presents


Set Yourself on Fire: The 20th Anniversary Tour

Tuesday, October 22
Doors : 7pm , Show : 8pm, ages 21 +

About Stars:

Montreal in winter is a cold, cruel place. It’s the sort of city where you have to chip the tears off your cheeks when you start to cry, where words freeze barely halfway out of your mouth. The cold is a vindictive bride – she’ll trap you between her thighs and turn your heart to ice if you’re not careful. Most sensible people spend their time indoors, trying to combat the chill by drinking red wine, getting high and having sex. Some fall in and out of love and some just fall asleep.

Last January, in the dead of night when everyone was dreaming, Montreal’s Stars escaped the city for an even colder place. Bundled in parkas, they headed to North Hatley, in Quebec’s rural Eastern Townships, hunkered down and set themselves on fire.

When the snow melted and they came out blinking in the sun, Stars discovered they’d made something of staggering beauty.

By all accounts, the process of creating Set Yourself On Fire, Stars’ third full-length album – for Arts & Crafts, home to their dear friends and sometime collaborators and bandmates Broken Social Scene – played like scenes from The Shining. During one of the coldest winters on record, the soft revolutionaries set up shop in a cabin offered to them by an odd man they’d met in a local pub, a chap named Alan Nicholls. Turned out he used to play in a classic Montreal garage band in the sixties and currently writes tunes for Robert Altman. Over the mixing board in his country home studio, there was a photo of Alan giving John Lennon a hug. While the snow fell outside, Stars nestled in their cocoon, drank rivers of booze, smoked things they shouldn’t, had bloody arguments, slid down icy hills on the bellies of their snowsuits, kissed and made up and nearly went insane. They steeped themselves in Sam Cooke and the Super Furry Animals, hash cakes and champagne, DuMaurier Lights and library books, the Apostle of Hustle and skating. Serious emo shit went down. When they were done letting themselves completely fall apart, Stars channeled all that cabin feverish intensity into writing brilliant songs. James Shaw, their old pal from Metric, showed up to help record some tracks. They think he survived unscathed.