Thursday, September 28, 2006

(09.28.06) Recommends:

Alden Penner, various live recordings.

So, yesterday I mentioned the rise and fall and rise again of 2 of the 3 Unicorns, which may lead one to reasonably question whatever became of the third member. The music of that member, Alden Penner, certaintly warrants its own recommendation. When my mind is working in cliches, it thinks that if the Unicorns were Uncle Tupelo, Nicholas Thorburn (aka Nick "Neil" Diamond aka the one who went on to form Islands) would play the role of superstar rockstar Jeff Tweedy, and Alden Penner would be the quiet genius, true-to-his-craft artist, Jay Farrar. As with the UT splitup, where people who report on such matters allege that Tweedy and Farrar wanted to go different directions, the path that Penner has taken is different, but worth listening to, especially because it drives home the point that there was some serious talent when the Unicorns were together. His music is much sparser now. It's a mixture of Appalachian porch music, and Irish pub music. Recent shows have featured just him on guitar and another person on fiddle.

Or, maybe this Tweedy/Farrar theory is contrived from endless listens to some of his live stuff available on The Secret Unicorns forum. The bootleg section has a nice selection of live Penner tracks (click on his picture to get to his tracks). My personal favorite, and the reason for this entry, is Untitled 3, from the CKUT 90.3 FM Radio Sessions. It is a nice song to listen to as you are falling asleep. So hurry up and download the track quickly, because the bootleg section of the website is only open for a few days each month, today being on of those days.

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