Words by Helen Knott
On Thursday 31st August, Parquet Courts play the O2 Institute in Digbeth. Doors open at 7pm, with tickets priced at £17 plus booking fee – as presented by Goldenvoice and This Is Tmrw. For direct gig information, including full venue details and online ticket sales, click here.
Parquet Courts’ show at the O2 Institute continues their tour in support of last year’s Human Performance – the Brooklyn band’s third studio album and the first to be released on Rough Trade Records. This is one of five UK dates in the run-up to a performance at End of the Road Festival in September.
Human Performance received a warm critical reaction on its release, causing Rolling Stone magazine to describe them as “the most exciting young rock band in America”, heir apparent to groups like Television, Pavement and the Velvet Underground.
This article marked a culmination of the steady momentum the band has been building since they formed in 2010. Birthed in the grassroots of the New York DIY scene – even now Parquet Courts avoid running a Twitter feed or Facebook page – the band has an ethos of rejecting digital marketing in favour of old fashioned physical releases, homemade print and frequent touring.
Front man Andrew Savage is an important aspect of this DIY mentality, designing the artwork for their records and flyers, and taking the unusual step of advertising the release of Human Performance through a wall mural in Brooklyn. But don’t think that Parquet Courts are all style and no substance; Savage’s songs have led Pitchfork to describe him as ‘one of the best rock lyricists of his generation’. And whilst that might sound like hyperbole he is arguably one of the more captivating indie lyricists around, pedaling words often sardonic, occasionally touching, but always compelling.
Andrew Savage is ably supported by the band’s other songwriter and guitarist, Austin Brown, bassist Sean Yeaton, and his brother Max on drums. When it works the resulting tumbling guitar lines and duel vocals are twitchy art-punk at its best.
Parquet Courts‘ live shows can be a potent mix of abrupt one-minute tracks and extended jam rock-outs; if they reach anything like the heights of this wonderful version of ‘Stoned and Starving’ from 2013 record Light Up Gold the O2 Institute crowd are in for a raw, and rather exciting, evening.
‘Stoned and Starving’ – Parquet Courts
‘Human Performance’ – Parquet Courts
Parquet Courts play at the O2 Institute on Thursday 31st August – as presented by Goldenvoice and This Is Tmrw for Direct gig info, including venue details and online ticket sales, click here.
For more on Parquet Courts, visit www.parquetcourts.wordpress.com
For more from O2 Institute, including full event listings and online ticket sales, visit www.academymusicgroup.com/o2institutebirmingham
For more from Goldenvoice, visit www.goldenvoice.com
For more from This Is Tmrw, visit www.thisistmrw.co.uk