Parcels - 'Parcels' Album Review
Described as "aural sunbeds to get you through the winter" Parcels' self-produced debut LP could not have come at a better time. The usual genre-bending, 70s inspired, electro pop funk infusion expected from Parcels reaches new heights in this seamless, unapologetic album. They sing "I know how I feel right now" on repeat but after listening to the full album I can't quite pinpoint what I am feeling. I just know I love it.
At a first listen this album feels reminiscent of a low-fi Daft Punk, unsurprising considering Daft Punk produced their 2017 single 'Overnight', but soon shifts into its own distinct sound. Jam packed with instrumentals, repetitive electro beats, natural sounds and harmonies it is a treat for the ears. Every song blends into the next whilst playing with the conventions of what it means to be a song. Beats are continuously built up for an entire song but never drop. They keep us on our toes, play into our expectations of genre, of sound and then abandon those tropes. And so, we continue on this journey of an album curious, challenged and excited.
Perhaps the best example of this comes out in my favourite track of the album 'Everyroad' which is a whopping eight minutes and thirty six seconds long. This track acts almost as a microcosm for the entire LP, morphing and evolving continuously. In fact, the first three minutes of this song is made up of the band members quietly talking mundanely about a house, a low-fi beat backing them. It almost takes on an ASMR feel as you are drawn into this new style. From this spoken-word we travel to a higher tempo electro-funk vibe. This is maybe one of the most interesting listens I have had in a while.
Other stand out tracks include 'Yourfault', the slowest song on the album, full of tasty harmonies and even a xylophone solo. I'd describe this song as a hug for your ears. The most poppy sound of the album, 'Lightenup', will dig its roots into your brain and stay stuck in your head for a long time. But there is no song on the album that is a dud, they all work together and without any one of them the album wouldn't have the same smoothness and great vibes.
In 'Lightenup' the band sings "Time to lighten up/I don't plan to/I don't plan to/Time I gave it up/I don't plan to/I don't plan to". And aren't we glad they aren't giving it up anytime soon.
Parcels will hit your ears on October 12th 2018.