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Unwed Sailor - The Faithful Anchor (Lovesick)

Instrumentalists Unwed Sailor have garnered comparisons with the likes of Low, Tortoise and the Dirty Three, which aren't that far off the mark. However, there's something more here, a reminder that there was a time when alternative music was all like this - truly alternative.

Unwed Sailor have the spirit that largely disappeared somewhere around the mid-90s, a spirit that infused the days when the likes of Red House Painters and Dinosaur Jnr ruled the roost. In the days before alternative broke through with Nirvana, no-one in the scene really had any kind of commercial sensibility because alternative music existed on college radio stations and across tape-swapping networks. It never really sold any copies!

As a result, anything could come out - alternative was eclectic, unpredictable and exciting. Unwed Sailor is a refreshing reminder of those days, their melodic constructions, dominated by the kind of indie guitar playing that has always contrasted strongly with the heavy metal show-offs, will probably never sell a million copies. But, they might do something better, they might gain a real fanbase, people unconcerned with fashion or trends, people who really care about the music. The way it should be.

Donnacha DeLong

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