Saturday, January 12, 2008

Back to the 80's: The Unforgiven

In the wake of the early 80s success of both Big Country and U2, labels were on the lookout for another guitar-heavy alternative band that would be the next big thing.

For a while at least, the Unforgiven were thought to be one of those up and comers. Landed by Elektra after a fierce bidding war, the band had already composed what would become its only semi-hit, "I Hear the Call," an anthem that stakes the group's territory as the United States' answer to The Alarm. It appears on their self-titled debut album, which was released in 1986.

Download "I Hear The Call"

The band, which took its name from a John Huston western, had the obvious western motif going for them. Which led their agency to allegedly send a copy of their album to Clint Eastwood, hoping he would direct their first music video. No reply.

Fast forward to a few years later. The band had all but broken up. All of a sudden, Eastwood releases a movie in 1992 called "Unforgiven" and, according to at least some band members, the font on the promotional poster is almost identical to what was used on the band's only album.

Let's take a look:

Here's the album

and here is the movie poster.


Pretty similar if you ask me though my wife (who is a former magazine editor) says the fonts are completely different. So I'll trust her.

You can learn more about the band at this web site, which has music downloads, streaming videos and interviews with former members of the band. Guitarist John Hickman went on to become one of the founding members of Cracker.

Unfortunately, that's the way things happen in the music business: Sometimes, you win an Oscar. And sometimes you get sent to the cutout bin.

1 comment:

Jim said...

Great Info on The Unforgiven! Thanks!