Parcels @ Manchester Academy 2
Parcels released their debut self-titled album this year and have burst into the music scene with a string of gigs across the world. While other bands may have found it daunting to be on the road so soon, Parcels are no strangers to travel. They are originally from Australia but have spent most of their musical careers in Germany. It is no wonder then, why they seem to be inspired by the Berlin music scene with many of their songs featuring techno and electro-pop elements. Having only heard ‘Overnight’, a single that was released in 2017 and produced by Grammy winners Daft Punk, I went into the gig pretty much blind, but hopeful for the same unique sound. And boy did they deliver!
Beginning with ‘Comedown’ which pretty much set the tone of the evening, its mellow introduction with the synthesize keyboard (Louie Swain) followed by a gradual layering from each member’s own individual instruments with Noah Hill on bass, Anatole “Toto” Serret on drums and Jules Crommelin on guitar until it becomes an infusion of the whole band itself. Parcels carefully curate their songs to highlight each individuals talent which is a testimony to their artistic licence- a rare characteristic in modern music.
My favourite had to be ‘Lightenup’ which although has a repetitive nature still manages to keep upbeat with its disco vibes. Its overall lyrical message of refusing to lighten up is in direct contrast with the positive tune of the song. There is also a flute solo though this is not the only song to feature a unique instrument in fact it seems typical of a Parcels song.
A crowd pleaser was ‘Tieduprightnow’ and it’s not hard to see why, with its infectious beat it makes it near impossible to not groove along. It was also during this song that featured another interesting instrument with an impressive solo performance on the triangle by Patrick Hetherington– yes the triangle! An instrument which is not typical associated with ‘real’ artists but that is perhaps why it features because it fits in with the bands ethos of being quirky and fun.
Parcels’ music is unique because it appears to incorporate music from the 60’s and 70’s while simultaneously providing a fresh sound. They are still newly emerging into the music world but they should definitely be one to watch as it would not be surprising if we start to see them on bigger stages in 2019. If I had one word to describe this band it would have to be funky.