Re-recording a pair of tracks from their self titled debut album which was unveiled in 2017 is an interesting move for Östersund, Sweden duo Starscape aka Per-Olof Göransson (vocals) and Anton Eriksson (multi instrumentalist) but keen to continue to, as they put it “telling epic tales of journeys beyond the stars” and have done exactly that. The cover of their EP “Pilgrims” is adorned by a 1977 painting by Don Davis and commissioned by NASA, depicting a space probe entering the atmosphere of Venus.
The cover art being a painting from the 1970s is your indication of what Starscape sound like, with their distinctive guitar tone rooted firmly in the psyhcadellic nature of that era with keys that match and give a flavour Pink Floyd in the process. Göransson’s accented vocals have a nostalgic charm that works well with the storytelling narrative of the tracks and while he does have a brief couple of scream moments on “Pilgrims Of The Stars“, he sticks to the cleans. Eriksson is clearly an accomplished multi instrumentalist and his guitar work has some interesting progressive leanings as they build constantly from a seemingly nothing base into something of power. “Colony” has a Power Metal vibe to it in the riff department and is reminiscent of early Iron Maiden which might raise an eyebrow given the bell bottomed flares of the first track but actually it’s not too far away. That vibe tapers off in paces for a return to the earlier sounds while a Moog solo is a curious piece of fun during an extended instrumental section that leaves no note unplayed. In about 50 years time, this could well be how Opeth sound [7/10]
Pilgrims of the Stars
“Pilgrims” by Starscape is out now and available over at bandcamp