At first, Canadian singer-songwriter Oh Susanna might have been Dylanesque with her stark intense narratives. As she developed, she was sometimes called (Gillian) Welchesque for her mountain-air monologues. With the arrival of a third, full-length, self-titled album, the time for the lazy likening of Suzie Ungerleider to anyone else has passed. With its depth of accomplishment to delight everybody that hears it, the only description from this record on can be Oh Susanna-esque.
This singular artist, born in the USA but raised in Vancouver from early childhood, stood out from the crowd from the moment she released an eponymous seven-song EP in 1997, swiftly graduating to an accomplished 1999 full-length debut, Johnstown. Another two years and another remarkable maturation brought the acclaimed Sleepy Little Sailor set, one of 2001's most delicate and sharply-observed song collections.
Oh Susanna is a worthy addition to an increasingly distinctive body of work that always carried an unusual watermark. Suzie first performed under the name in 1995, and soon after that EP on her own Stella imprint in '97, she was being hailed as Canada's best unsigned artist. Here, the early support of BBC broadcaster Bob Harris started a momentum that has ensured the UK's continuing status as a second home that welcomes her back often.
Festivals: 2006 (fall)