All Star United
Official Web Site
All Star United Bibliography: (click on each album cover to view tracks and All Star United lyrics)
All Star United Biography
All Star United's earth-trotting concert schedule should come as no surprise given the title of the band's sophomore album, International Anthems for the Human Race.
The genre mishmash and fun-without-apologies style that characterized All Star United's debut is back, in even fuller, bursting-at-the-seams force. International Anthems is a reflection of five young men who've seen an incredibly diverse array of people and places in the last couple of years, and have incorporated those experiences into all that they do.
Even though All Star United is known for their sharp wit and endless jesting, the band members treat their mission quite seriously. "We've always wanted to build an international market," keyboardist Patrick McCallum remarks, "and you don't get anywhere without asking. We're an adventurous kind of group and we like to push it with our live show. So we decided we'd play crazy places like Turkey and shows like a Catholic youth event in Belfast. We discovered that the Holy Spirit can move through the music in those places."
Albeit well-traveled, All Star United has found time to build quite a successful career right here in the United States. In addition to an exhaustive state-side touring schedule, including two tours with Third Day, All Star United's self-titled debut received a Grammy nomination for "Rock/Gospel Album Of The Year," and garnered the band four No. 1 radio singles including the "#1 Rock Song Of The Year ('Smash Hit')" in 1997. The band was also honored by CCM Magazine and the readers of Release Magazine as one of the "Best New Artists Of 1997." 7ball Magazine voted All Star United one of the "Ten Best Albums Of 1997."
In the studio, the quintet - which also includes drummer Christian Crowe, lead vocalist Ian Eskelin, guitarist Dave Clo and bassist Adrian Walther - "just turned on the amps full blast and came up with our own parts," Crowe says, adding that the International Anthems were written to have the greatest impact in front of the largest crowds.
"We desire to be an arena band, a stadium band," Crowe explains. "When we're playing in front of 20,000 or 30,000 people, that's when we do our best stuff. That's what the international anthems are all about -- reaching the masses with the kind of music that'll exude a classic, '70s rock feel that appeals to both the 13-year-old rocker and the 45-year-old mother."
Along with their desire to write the perfect pop song, All Star United's core value is ministry -- as evidenced by the self-financed short-term mission trip they take as a band every year. "We use music to entertain, and then we hit the crowd with the truth of the message," Eskelin says. "Fortunately, English is pretty much an international language, and we can talk pretty easily to many people when we're on tour in different countries. But even when we played for Russian and Norwegian troops, they would come up and tell us in broken English that they totally understood the message we were trying to get across.