steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

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info opinion

Uva Ursi

"Matter" CDR

Moonbase Records

Genres: indie pop, indie rock

December 2005

Fem-fronted grungy guitar pop - you gotta love it. Uva Ursi reminds me of The Cranberries a lot - mostly in the guitars - but their songs don't seem to have as much direction, instead tending to meander along a bit more. That isn't to say Matter's six songs are necessarily bad, only that their melodies require a bit more time to process and appreciate. Take the country-tinged opener, "Walk Away"; twangy guitar licks lie under a lovely vocal melody - the chorus isn't incredible, but it's satisfying in a singer/songwriter sort of way. Grungy "Perfume," meanwhile, is plodding with a sort of early dark Liz Phair-ish quality, while the lengthy "Wake" is slow and unusually pretty and "Other World" features a wonderful breakthrough chorus that reminds you how beautiful the world sometimes manages to be. For a band named after an herbal remedy for urinary tract infections, I'm very impressed. I haven't tested, but I'm willing to bet music this pleasant does indeed make it easier to pee.


Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 6 tracks, distributed by the label, released 2003]