Saturday, June 1, 2013
REVIEW: The Parson Red Heads "6" (EP)
We've been all in for the Parson Red Heads for quite some time, and did a feature piece on their outstanding 2011 LP Yearling.
Following a bit of a break after the birth of a baby to Brette Marie Way (far left above; drums) and Evan Way (principal songwriter, guitars, lead vocals; far right above), The Parson Red Heads are back with a new EP and a tour.
6 is a step forward for the band, though still rooted in their well crafted West coast pop sensibility. Though 6 was recorded quickly in Portland with Scott McCaughey (Young Fresh Fellows, The Minus 5, The Baseball Project) producing most of the tracks, it has a careful and at the same time looser and more rockin' feel than Yearling. The Parsons' extensive touring in 2011-12 has helped them play with a great deal more confidence.
Evan Way continues to develop as both a songwriter and lyricist. And the song contributed by guitarist Sam Fowles (3rd from left above), "Wedding in the Round" is terrific as well, beautiful melody, with some especially fine guitar lines.
This video shows the band in the studio recording "Times":
Fans of the Scottish pop we cover so extensively here should be sure to check this band out, especially "Christine" and "Crying Days Are Over" from this EP, either one of which would do both the Teenage Fanclub and the current Glasgow scene proud. These are the sort of sunny, perfect pop songs that made us fall in love with the Parson Red Heads to begin with.
"The Moon Is In Your Eyes" is a change of pace for the band, a more smoky sound, closer to VU than any of the Parsons previous work.
6 features six terrific new pop songs, plus a short instrumental interlude. It's a limited pressing so be sure to pick one up when you see it or purchase in MP3 format here.
Here is the band's note about their upcoming West coast tour dates:
Hi, y'all! We are hitting the road in June, along with our pals Desert Noises, and Vancouver's wonderful Said The Whale! See below for dates, and pick up a ticket when you can! We can't wait to see you, hang out, play whiffle ball, drink some brews, give some hugs ... oh and play some songs for you, too.
6/2 - Tractor Tavern - Seattle, WA *#
6/4 - Doug Fir - Portland, OR *+
6/6 - Sam Bonds Garage - Eugene, OR *+
6/7 - Sophia's - Davis, CA *+
6/8 - Partisan - Merced, CA *+
6/9 - Brick & Mortar - San Francisco, CA *+^
6/11 - Detroit Bar - Costa Mesa, CA *
6/12 - Casbah - San Diego, Ca *+
6/13 - Bootleg - LA, CA *+
6/14 - Beauty Bar - Las Vegas, NV *+
6/15 - Pub Rocks Live - Phoenix, AZ *+
6/16 - Zoey's - Ventura, CA w/ The Spires & Tall Tales
6/17 - Don Quixote's - Felton, CA
6/18 - Cafe Coda - Chico, CA
* w/ Desert Noises
+ w/ Said The Whale
# w/ The Wayfinders
^ w/ Big Tree
Facebook page - Parson Red Heads