Katt Lowe And The Othersyde

Katt Lowe And The Othersyde

404 Music, 2001

REVIEW BY: Christopher Thelen


Katt Lowe is a singer/songwriter cut from the same mold that produced groups like The Runaways and The Go-Gos. Like fellow grrl rockers Liz Phair and Ani DiFranco, Lowe takes the raw nerve endings of her life and situations around her, putting the sights and feelings to music.

Her debut album, Katt Lowe And The Othersyde, suggests that she needs to hone her talents a little more, but that she is most definitely an artist to watch.my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

Teaming up with former Runaways member Cherie Currie (who produces and contributes some vocals), Lowe comes out of the gates with both fists flying, emotions literally pouring out of these songs. Lowe proves early on that she's learned her lessons from her mentors well, with songs like "Make It Go Away," "Selfish" and "Love Never Dies" being among the strongest cuts on the album.

Lowe's songwriting touches on heartbreak ("Don't Need You," "Only Hurts A Little") and sexuality ("U Can Have Me," "Tonite") - though in the latter case Lowe veers dangerously close at times to Kiss-like portrayals, turning what could have been a shockingly powerful statement into something almost comical - and that, I don't think, was ever her intention.

Where her Achilles's heel might be is that she still needs to find a way to take her personal life and ever so slightly homogenize it so that listeners can pull their own meanings away from the songs. Tracks like "Please Don't Lose Yourself" and "Only Hurts A Little" are raw, unpolished works that feature Lowe pouring her heart out in her vocals. While Lowe should not be discouraged from drawing upon reality for her work, she should be encouraged to try and shape the songs so they go from "my life" songs to songs that reflect the listeners' lives. (Having written songs in my day which fell under the same trap, I can fairly make that statement - the hard part, though, is learning how to make those minor "tweaks".)

Despite these flaws, one can see that Lowe does indeed have a gift with words and music, and still being young in her craft, it's safe to assume that she'll only continue to get better with time and experience. (Her friendship with Currie will undoubtedly help her with her skills as well.) For now, Katt Lowe And The Othersyde is a decent, if flawed, first outing for someone who could well be the leader of the next generation of the grrl movement.

Rating: C+

User Rating: Not Yet Rated



© 2001 Christopher Thelen and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of 404 Music, and is used for informational purposes only.