Boomkat Product Review:
Uzi & Ari is a project spearheaded by Ben Shepard - no, not the GMTV presenter, this is some other guy. Shepard is a writer and musician of considerable talent, making an indelible mark with the rousing strings and guitar chug of 'Missoula', following up with the Radiohead-meets-Beirut brilliance of 'Wolf Eggs'. From this point onwards the album seems to switch between poignant chamber pop composition (populated by violins, glockenspiel and piano) and twanging Telecaster romps, often changing mood within the space of a single song. Shepard's instrumental configuration isn't too far from Sigur Ros-style grandeur, but the band always manage to keep a lid on the scale, maintaining a sense of intimacy on tracks like 'Magpie's Monologue' and 'Thumbsucker'. Elsewhere, you'll find highlights in the staccato brass and skittering electronic beats of 'Comforts', which makes for a highly successful and very unusual combination of sounds, putting a lightly experimental slant on the band's chamber pop stylings.