Watch List: Parquet Courts' Dynamic Garage Rock
Parquet Courts is a 4-piece Brooklyn-based indie rock band. Their debut album, American Specialties, was a limited cassette release in 2011. They followed it up with their second album in 2012, Light Up Gold, which received a lot of critical acclaim. These releases established their place as a solid garage rock band with obvious roots in 80s punk, with heavy guitar riffs and lead vocals that are speak-sung (sometimes yell-sung).
The band released their third and fourth albums, Sunbathing Animal and Content Nausea, in 2014. Sunbathing Animals made its way onto the Billboard albums chart, just narrowly missing the top 50. An experimental EP, Monastic Living, came in 2015. Its a mostly instrumental project and plays with synths and electronic elements—a quite different direction from the band’s niche sound.
Their most recent album, which came out in February of this year, Human Performance, brings us back closer to the sound that listeners have come to expect from the band. The album is a little softer, mellower, less evocative of 80s punk and more reminiscent of 70s art rock. The title track “Human Performance” is a great example of that. At its core, it’s a break up song: a stoic recollection of a past relationship and the emotional trauma in the aftermath captured in deeply emotional lyrics.
“Those pristine days I, recall so fondly
So few are trials when a life isn't lonely, and now if only
I'd never felt it, I'd never heard it
I know I loved you did I even deserve it, when you returned it”
Human Performance is yet another great album for Parquet Courts: a band that knows their sound but isn’t afraid to experiment. And because of this, their best is probably yet to come.
Give them a listen below: