The Unicorns’ legendary album lives on

In the midst of today’s ever growing musical world, it can be hard to find anything; sometimes people don’t even know where to begin. While this may not show you every song, album or EP that you’d ever dream of hearing, let this inspire you to search and dive into the infinitely deep hole that is the modern music world.

This one is special to me, as it’s one of my personal favorite albums that I’ve ever listened to, and I believe that more people should experience this amazing work. I’m of course talking about The Unicorns and their main album, Who Will Cut Our Hair When We’re Gone? The Unicorns were a band that started out in Montreal, Canada in December of 2000. An interesting fact is that Alden Penner and Nicholas Thorburn, two vocalists and guitarists in the band met in their high school in 1998, and Alden, who was new to the school decided to wear a skirt to school, which intrigued NIck, causing their friendship. Their drummer, Jamie Thompson joined later in 2003. Their music consists of a lo-fi garage rock sound, a sound that takes me back to some simple early recording of just a few friends messing around with instruments.

The album cover itself is a drawing colored with what looks like just markers, the colors not consistent with lighter and darker tones, giving it a very homemade feel, and the title itself plays well into the general theme that this album has, which I will refer to as vanity in death 

The album’s opener called “I Don’t Wanna Die,” is a song about what else, not wanting to die just yet. This album is very concept heavy but can be seen as revolving around the band itself. The song ends with Death itself telling the band members that they’re in for a little ride. The next song, “Tuff Ghost” features a sung conversation between two people, one presumed to be alive and the other a ghost. Even though the ghost acts tough (alluding to the song’s title) the other person can see right through the ghost, both physically and mentally, seeing that the ghost isn’t happy with being dead. Really it could go on. Almost every song can be connected to the concept of Death, such as “Jellybones,” a song about a person getting a case of Jellybones, an assumed to be deadly disease, “Child Star” is about an argument between a child star and one of the fans, and the child star ends up showing that aside from the famous status, the star has nothing else, nothing but vanity. “Les Os” is about a dead relationship where one asks another if their love was a lie. To wrap up the album we have “Ready to Die,” a song where the singer sings about their life experiences and how they’re happy with how they lived and not living in fear of their death. The song ends, of course, with the singer coughing one before giving up the ghost.

I wanted to dedicate a part of this review to talk about the title Who Will Cut Our Hair When We’re Gone? It’s a very interesting title in my opinion and furthers the theme of vanity in death, asking that even when they’re dead and gone, who will cut their hair and make them look good, showing that even when they’re dead, they still care about being looked upon positively. 

To round things up, I love this album, I’ve loved this album since I learned about it. Its sound, its theming, I love all of it. The only shame is that the band is no longer together and only really had one album, but that one album was a 9/10, something that I’ll probably keep in my mind for years to come.

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