Friday, February 26, 2010

Third Eye Blind's Ursa Major

Little less than a year ago on August 17, 2009, Third Eye Blind released their long anticipated album Ursa Major. Being a fan of the California bay area group for sometime, I was excited to hear what song writing mastermind, Stephan Jenkins would let loose this time on fans.

With Jenkin's witty lyrical style and the band's penchant for exotic sounds and groove-orientated rhythm, this album doesn't fail to deliver. It just delivers in a different way.

Unlike the band's previous albums Out of the Vein and Blue, which had chockfulls of more modern-sounding hits, Ursa Major is more stripped down and less over produced as the band's previous albums. While it takes a few more listens to click with some of the songs on Ursa Major, the album does have immediate stand out tracks such as "Don't Believe A Word," "Bonfire," and "About To Break". However, the album's crown jewels are the songs "Water Landing" and "Monotov's Private Opera."

Water Landing's tint of 60s and 70s classic rock sound in the beginning immediately sets a groove that persuades one to sing along. It then rocks out before it sets into a reggae influenced rap and eventually flows into a verse filled with exotic sound scapes.

The other gem on this album is the heart-felt "Monotov's Private Opera," and is the must-listen to track on Ursa Major. Sexy and sensual with Jenkin's typical lullaby voice and deep lyrical content. This song grooves with a melancholic sweetness that just mesmerizes from beginning to end with a wonderful hook. All I can say is - "Songwriting at it's absolute best."

Ursa Major is a must-check-out album for any Third Eye Blind fan, or even one who has yet to stumble upon their amazing music. There are plenty of songs on this album that will grab hold of the listener and not let go for quite some time.

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