About the album
I have always been attracted by music that cannot easily be categorised. Too much predictability can be boring. Sometimes you only need to hear a few seconds worth of music to conclude that "this is a jazz band", "this is country music" or "they are a typical pop group".
Not so with Uro.
They are a band that beautifully and gracefully defies categorisation. Not by being unfocused or undecided, but by proudly creating their music with an open mind. They are allowing influences from a wide variety of styles and forms to enter their music, while all the time staying rooted in their own concept of quality and musical cohesion.
Uro is a rare bird, promising to fly high, and to bring beautiful, clean, transparent music to all those who will be tuning in to their frequency.
They are a professional bunch. Their point of departure as a band is the Music Department of the University of Agder in Kristiansand, Norway. For decades already, this institution has been among the leaders in a process to break out of academia's former limitations to classical music, and to open up for jazz, rock, traditional music, electronics and more. The members of Uro all have masters or bachelors in music from this university. While such academic degrees are no guarantee in themselves for the creation of exciting music, they have obviously resulted in skills and knowledge that put these performers well above the average level of musicianship in most bands.
Their ability to make the music exciting, and not just highly competent, comes from their creativity and imagination, while their realization of musical ideas benefit from their acquired skills. When listening to the album, you will find yourself in a beautiful and melodic musical landscape. With two guitars and a dobro in the 5 piece line-up, you need to have very defined roles for each of these similar instruments in the different compositions. The soundscape could easily be overpopulated.
Again: Not so with Uro!
The group has managed to create an open and remarkably transparent sound, full and rich, but still with space and room for each instrument. Their guitar sound is clean and natural, with hints of everything from advanced jazz guitar, to traditional music, to the innocence of Hank Marvin's early Shadows. The dobro sometimes adds a feeling of Americana, and while the rhythm section is tight and compact, the whole sound of the group still remains light and transparent, never crowded.