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coverpic flag Norway - Full Moon 74 - 10/21/02

Ugress
Resound
Port Azur/Tuba

Here's another electronica/breakbeat/hip-hop/house act located in Bergen taking the name from the herbal world (Ugress means 'weed'). And another one-man-band act as the sole weed-meister is one Gisle Martens Meyer (producer/mixer/sampler/musician). Assisted, on some tracks, by singer Therese Vadem (of Atakama) and bassman Jørn Rathe. Ugress signed with the new Oslo label Port Azur, and debut album Resound was released last month, after a minor radio hit, "Loungemeister", earlier this year.

And, yes, a lot of Ugress' material is good stuff. Weed can be beautiful. Playful, witty, and definitely something for dance floors. The record opens with a bouncy, wall-climbing "Spider-Man Theme", before "Queen of Darkness" unveil miss Vadem's elegant voice, in a song that could've been the theme song for an upcoming James Bond film. Catchy indeed, as it strolls across the the floor, neatly "slow-mo"s through the air. I also find the song "Decepticons" to be working quite well with her mystique sounding vocals. "Reason To Believe" is one of the tougher tracks, with its heavy rhythmic parts and suggestive melody. Great. Even though there are some 'fillers' Resound is absolutely an album worth listening to.

Ugress deserve to be noticed, internationally as well as "at home". They should, along with, say, Ralph Myerz & The Jack Herren Band and Xploding Plastix, be able to follow up (the more cheesy sounding) Röyksopp's success outside Norway.

Copyright © 2002 Sam Ples e-mail address

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