Show Review: Uh Huh Her at the Duck Room, Friday, May 2

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Melancholy Angie Mattson opened for Uh Huh Her all by herself last night in the basement with the ducky décor at Blueberry Hill. While the absence of her band and gloominess of the venue (even illuminated mallards don’t make the Duck Room a cozy den) decreased the brittle emotion found on tracks sampled online, the folk version of Angie Mattson wasn’t bad. Her lonely lyrics translated well to an acoustic sound, but some of the fragility didn’t carry over; slower tempo songs like “December” bordered on apathetic.

It took around fifteen minutes for Uh Huh Her to make an appearance after Mattson's set ended, to the shrieking pleasure of surrounding audience members -- who minutes before had engaged in an “Uh Huh Her” chant that died down when Camila Grey and Leisha Hailey continued to take their sweet time.

Taking into account guitar player/keyboarder Hailey’s stardom in The L Word, the demographic was anticipated, but the sheer totality of lesbians attending this concert was initially a little mystifying. Uh Huh Her, whose name references a song by PJ Harvey, is “glossed-up electropop” that, on the upcoming album Common Reaction shimmers watery and incandescent; the delicate desperation of tracks like “Dreamer” are buoyed by electro-pop hopefulness in “Wait Another Day.”

It wasn’t immediately clear how this sound might self-select for a woman’s sexuality the way, say, the roid-ish aggression of Rob Zombie “can” select for a certain type of dude. But at Friday's show, glittery Camila flirtatiously pandered the persona of an airily absent female, engaging in the non-conversation ubiquitously found in soft-core porn intros. (Camila: “Oh, we’re having some technical difficulties; should Leisha strip to bide time?”)

While this was met with considerable enthusiasm by the audience, it was unnecessary; Uh Huh Her’s sparkling sound transcends subcultures.

-- Kristy Wendt

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