After five years with Hole and a stint with Smashing Pumpkins, Ms Auf der Maur took time off to, like, "recuperate and figure out what music and life meant to me". Suitably enlightened, she has etched her findings on to her debut solo album. It sounds like Melissa picked up a few tips from Big Billy Corgan - these are powerful and finely crafted songs, even if the lyrics suggest that, for Melissa, the meaning of life is chained up in some goths-and-dragons dungeon.
Melissa Auf der Maur floated through the background of post-commercial alternative music in the late '90s, joining Hole as a bassist after Kristen Pfaff's death in 1994, then jumping ship for the Smashing Pumpkins after Courtney Love's band imploded in the aftermath of Celebrity Skin. She became something of an alt-rock sex symbol during this time, with her wild, curly mane of hair and waifish goth look garnering far more attention than whatever musical contributions she lent to either Hole or the Pumpkins, and that sex symbol status gave her a small cult that eagerly awaited her solo debut, Auf der Maur, which was released in the U.K. in 2003 and made it to America in the summer of 2004.