Universal Honey Universal Honey

Did someone say “Canada’s answer to the Cardigans?” The tightly produced commercial sound of Canada’s own Universal Honey’s self-titled album is pop, pure and simple. The Ooh Ya Ya’s and the wading pool depth lyrics are all saccharin sweet. Universal Honey is a duo made up of Leslie Stanwyck on vocals, guitars and keyboards and Johnny Sinclair on bass guitars. The album yields some tunes that are sure to stick in your craw all day. The album opener, “Big Mistake,” is a sure-fire radio hit and a perfect example of the Universal Honey formula. The idea proves to be a mildly entertaining alchemy of simplistic style with just enough genuine feeling to make it palatable, for a little while. The molasses voice of Stanwyck gets the listener about a third of the way through the 15 tracks before the boredom begins to slowly creep in. The slick pop production is right out of a book the Backstreet Boys wrote two years ago — a colouring book that is. Universal Honey has put together a slick, upbeat, radio-catchy piece of candy fluff. Just like cotton candy, the first few bites are a pleasant rush, but by the end of the stick you’re stomach is aching for more substantial nutrients. (41)