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Dashboard Confessional frontman reappears in Twin Forks

Published May 6, 2014 10:55 am

Music • Dashboard Confessional's Chris Carrabba switches from emo to folk in new project, performing May 6 in Utah.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2014, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

In "Twin Peaks," Laura Palmer died.

In Twin Forks, Chris Carrabba lives.

There have been plenty of fans missing Carrabba since the 2009 release of his band Dashboard Confessional's sixth album, "After the Ending."

The 39-year-old Floridian's new project, Twin Forks, is decidedly different from Dashboard Confessional, one of the most popular alt-rock bands in the first decade of the new millennium. Carrabba's handsome features, gelled hair and tattooed body once made him the face of the now-living-on-life-support genre of emo.

Carrabba spoke to The Tribune twice about Twin Forks (once in August 2013, and again in early April), one of the best new bands in the flourishing acoustic music scene. Even a cursory listen to Twin Forks' debut, self-titled album reveals hints of folk, bluegrass and country with — gasp — a mandolin and even whistling.

He sounds a lot happier.

"This is not a side project," said Carrabba, dismissing the notion that he is just a dilettante with Twin Forks, a band created in 2013 with Suzie Zeldin (of indie-rock band The Narrative), Ben Homola (touring guitarist for rock bands Manchester Orchestra and Brand New) and Jonathan Clark (a noted producer and multi-instrumentalist).

But Dashboard fans need not fear that Carrabba will leave his former act — essentially a one-man band — to wither and die. "I have every intention of making another Dashboard Confessional album," he said. "I don't feel like that stage in my life is over."

Simply, Carrabba said he felt exhausted from constant touring with Dashboard and wanted a hiatus to refresh his perspective. If forced to make a Dashboard album now, he said he would be cheating committed fans of the band — fans he has cultivated since first recording solo demos in 1999.

In the meantime, Carrabba said he enjoys the collaborative nature of Twin Forks, despite being the frontman and lead singer on the band's songs. "I think we have a democracy," he said. "I think we each have special skills to bring to the band."

The sound, he said of the band, is the group's attempt to mine the singer-songwriter vein in the style of the late Nick Drake.

Twin Forks, despite Carrabba's fame and notoriety, still has to battle other new bands for spots on high-profile tours, and is currently opening for veteran band Augustana in 24Tix's most popular show on its calendar.

"I have this strange perspective of going from small rooms to big rooms," Carrabba said. "Now I am excited about playing small shows. … I'm more comfortable being a transient going from town to town. I still love the adventure of every night." —

Augustana with Twin Forks

When • Tuesday, 8 p.m.

Where • Urban Lounge, 241 S. 500 East, Salt Lake City

Tickets • $14 in advance, $17 day of show, at 24Tix.com