At only the second debut of their new album Wendigo, Penny and Sparrow had a crowd full of eager listeners hanging onto every word, harmony, and strum recently at Marathon Music Works. Since the release of their breakthrough album Let a Lover Drown You, the dynamic folk duo has had a faithful following waiting and hopeful for more. Without disappointing, this latest collection of euphonious ballads displays that their talent is even more praiseworthy than we thought. With Andy Baxter effortlessly singing lead and Kyle Jahnke playing guitar, the pair filled the abandoned airplane hanger with celestial harmonies and poetic vulnerability, leaving everyone weak in the knees.
Inspired by the Native American legend, Wendigo has monsters hiding in the closet and looming under the bed of each song. Continuing with their distinct somber and elegant tone, the pair flawlessly sang of raw and honest fears like folklore – chilling, but made up. Musicianship was undeniable as the beautifully crafted melodies graced each pair of attentive ears. Preforming songs like “Double Heart, “Salome & Saint Procula,” and “Javert,” the ambitious album was brought to life with undemanding charisma and grand dynamics that were nothing short of stunning.
Personable, humorous, and predictably accompanied by a glass of brandy, Andy and Kyle make you feel as if you’re sitting with friends in their living room rather than listening in a crowded venue. Not even a perfectly timed train whistle during the opening song could make the duo miss a beat. Their gratitude, brilliance, and humility was equally noteworthy and admirable. Ending with a medley of songs old and new, Penny and Sparrow left the crowd musically satisfied by a truly sensational night, while paradoxically eager for more and anxiously waiting the next opportunity to hear them live. Resonating with the alluring honesty of their work, we are all looking for something more.
“When you’re a kid it’s a monster
Changing shape at it’s leisure
We grow up great pretenders
And say it’s gone” – Rivertown
[This beautiful review was written by Alissa Cunningham; these glorious photos were taken by Nathan Pirkle,]