Archive for the ‘Unwound’ Category

[ATTENDED: March 16, 2023] Unwound

This Unwound tour was announced with much fanfare.  It had been 20 years since the band had last toured.  And they didn’t think they’d reunite

“When we put Unwound on the shelf in 2002, we never thought we’d return to the project,” drummer Sara Lund said in a statement with today’s announcement. The band held its first reunion practice, secretly, in April 2022.


“Starting over again is a rebellious act against our failure,” guitarist/singer Justin Trosper added.

There was a compounded problem in that their bassist Vern Rumsey, died in 2020.  When introducing the last few songs of the night (the only time he spoke) Trosper dedicated the finals songs to Vern saying that he was the soul of the band.  Jared Warren filled in for Rumsey.  Scott Seckington has also joined on guitar–the band was (pretty much) always a three-piece, but I thought Seckington was an excellent addition to the overall sound.

But it turned out that the early 1990s band that I was familiar with was Unrest.  Indeed, I didn’t know Unwound at all.  But I had grabbed a ticket because the hype got the best of me.  I listened to their albums and really liked what I heard.  So I wasn’t disappointed that I got the ticket.

There was the usual pre-band music playing over the speakers, but about five minutes before the band went on, the sound was switched to a live broadcast of NOAA weather–a perfectly weird sounding recitation of ordinary weather information.  It worked perfectly.  The also played the NOAA weather when the band was over. (more…)

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[ATTENDED: March 16, 2023] Versus

Back in the 90s, I loved a whole bunch of band that I discovered from a compilation called Ear of the Dragon.  I had known some of the bands already (which is why I bought the compilation).  It featured bands like The Dambuilders, aMiniature, Seam and Versus.

I loved everything about Versus.  Their sound was interesting–catchy and dissonant alternately.  And I loved the vocals of Richard Baluyut and Fontaine Toups (who has the best name in music).  They put out a number of albums and EPs in the 1990s and t hen went dormant.

In 2010 they put out a new album that I missed entirely.  Same with their 2019 release (which is on a label I’ve never heard of).  I basically had assumed that they were broken up for good.

So imagine my surprise to see that they were opening for Unwound on the night that I happened to get a ticket.  (TEKE::TEKE from Montreal opened the first night–I hadn’t heard of them but they are a Japanese psych rock band, hmmm).

The band came out on stage and while I recognized Richard and Fontaine, I didn’t know the other two.  They weren’t introduced, but I think they were  the rest of the Baluyut family: James on guitar and Edward on drums.

They opened with Mummified, a track off their newest album that has a really long instrumental opening.  I didn’t know it, but the band sounded great.  And after two minutes when Richard started singing, he sounded great too.  But it was when Fontaine added her vocals that everything came flooding back why I loved this band so much. (more…)

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