The Los Angeles duo Uh Huh Her had a specific sonic goal in mind for its just-released sophomore album, “Nocturnes” — and it was decidedly different from its 2008 debut “Common Reaction.”
After taking “a synth-based and MIDI-based” approach on “Common Reaction,” Uh Huh Her “went to town with being really organic” on “Nocturnes” says Camila Grey, the former Mellowdrone member who formed Uh Huh Her in 2007 with onetime Murmurs members Leisha Hailey, co-star of Showtime’s “The L Word.” Grey also co-produced the album with Wendy Melvoin, formerly of Prince’s band, the Revolution.
“We really had the luxury of time with (the album),” Grey, 32, adds. “I wanted to go back to beauty and put in live instruments, live horns and record strings and grand piano. I think nowadays people MIDI the crap out of music and nothing sounds pretty anymore. It sounds canned. So I wanted to make music again.”
“Nocturnes” includes “Same High,” the song Uh Huh Her contributed to the soundtrack of the 2010 film “The Kids Are All Right,” while Grey says Melvoin also made a strong mark on the new album’s sound.
“We called her the mad scientist — but in the most complimentary way,” notes Grey, who also played in “American Idol” runner-up Adam Lambert’s Glam Nation Tour band. “I need to be taken out of my element sometimes, and she certainly did that. She got me to play rhythms different and made things sound huge.
“See, I always had envisioned this hugeness, this wall of sound reminiscent of early Smashing Pumpkins or Radiohead, bands I loved. (Melvoin) helped us achieve that and taught me a lot about songwriting and production, too, so it was really great.”
Uh Huh Her and Fences perform Tuesday, Oct. 18, at the Shelter, 431 E. Congress St., Detroit. Doors open at 7 p.m. Tickets are $13. Call 313-961-6358 or visit www.livenation.com.
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