Reviewed by Haydon Spenceley
Three full-length albums and one best-of in to their relatively short career, Arizona-based band Stellar Kart return, with new guitarist, former Dizmas member Jon Howard. Again produced by All Star United's Ian Eskelin, whose Midas touch elevates the artistry of the album above many in its genre, this new offering continues the band's marked progression in terms of musical ambition and maturity. Opening trio "All My Heart", "We Shine" (which is a Fee cover) and "Something Holy" are muscular pop rock offerings, tailor-made for success as radio singles. And then comes the miss-step. The cover of "Spirit in the Sky" is competent, and probably goes down well with the group's youth group audience, but on an album which is intelligent and artistic, it simply sticks out like a sore thumb. Having said that, the quality returns for the rest of the album. The title track is an anthem in waiting, while covers of Matt Redman's "Never Let Go" and the perhaps more-surprising "Until My Heart Caves In", originally a hit for Audio Adrenaline, are particularly pleasing. It seems that Stellar Kart are a band who are beginning to really hit their stride.
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Pop-punk youth favourites Stellar Kart bring all of their award-winning, chart busting and vast touring experience to bear on simply the best record of their career: Everything Is Different Now.
And they mean it. It sounds different. It feels different. The words get stuck in your head. The guitars heat up and melt your heart and leave you wanting more.
Everything Is Different Now features a diverse mix of power pop originals (Until My Heart Caves In, It’s Not Over) and SK-infused covers (You Never Let Go, We Shine, Spirit In The Sky) – at once amped up and yet somehow stripped down – all intended to lift its audience toward the ultimate freedom found only in Christ.