Unwed Sailor, Kuri, Theodore Atwood

With over 20 years of music under his belt, Johnathon Ford, the visionary behind Unwed Sailor, presents a new offering in his expansive interpretation of instrumental music.

Throughout the band’s career, Ford has leapt in a myriad of instrumental directions, from angular post-rock rhythms, to dreamy ambient soundscapes, to the sound of homemade instruments playing storybook nursery rhymes. Though all these directions vary in style, all of the albums share a certain melodic sensibility, a flavor that’s undeniably Ford’s, yet each has its own unique place in creating the sound and vision of Unwed Sailor. In effect, the band’s discography feels like a collection of postcards from different times and places.

This, of course, includes Heavy Age, the band’s most recent full-length (and first in a decade), whose leaden beats land heavier and bass churns harder than the band’s predecessors. “With Heavy Age,” Ford says, “I wanted this to feel like an Unwed Sailor live record. Like if you came to an Unwed show, this is what you’d hear—heavy and bombastic, like grabbing someone by the shirt.”

Still Heavy Age also contains glints and sparks of the albums that preceded it. Songs like “Indian Paintbrush” and “ACAXAO,” for example, feature Little Wars’s wavering momentum, it’s swarming effervescence; others like “Nova” feature The White Ox’s vast expanses.

Though nothing quite captures the aesthetic of The Marionette and the Music Box, the album possesses a similar sense of narration, as if each track feels like a chapter in an epic story. In effect, Heavy Age feels like the culmination of everything that Unwed Sailor has released—and a touchstone toward which the band has been building for years. But the only way to understand their sound and style, to truly comprehend the breadth of their depth, is to pick up their stack of postcards—starting with Heavy Age, the darkest and densest—and flip through them one at a time.

Singer, multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, and producer, Kuri chiefly describes himself as “an observer.” His keen insight and sonic curiosity thread together an intriguing framework of carefully constructed and composed alternative on 2019’s debut album No Village [June 7 , 2019; Nevado Music]. The foundation remains rooted in organic performances, classically infused orchestration, jazzy freeform spirit, cinematic ambition, and ultimately inspired observation.

Scott began writing under the name Kuri in 2017. Galvanized by influences ranging from Robert Glasper and Radiohead to Africa’s Tinariwen and composer John Cage, he arranged an expansive sonic palette informing his signature sound. It’s comprised of an ever-growing arsenal of instruments, including piano, drums, congas, strings, horns, bass, guitar, and more.
“…dazzling as it is bewildering… a lyrically ingenious, musically mystifying cinematic folk masterpiece.” – Atwood Magazine

Theodore Atwood

Theodore Atwood is a multi-instrumentalist, songwriter and producer living in San Francisco, originally from Phoenix. His songs are a mixture of heavy guitar-driven rock paired with rich and layered synthesizers, electronic rhythms, and melodic vocals. The sound is dark, haunting, vibrant and explosive. Themes explore layers of the psyche and the meaning in human experience.

$10 in Advance // $12 at the Door


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