Parquet Courts' third album is a bracing snapshot of a band on a roll. Their music is not explicitly political, but Parquet Courts are definitely a thinking band, and a critical one.
When Parquet Courts debuted in 2011 with the supremely bratty American Specialties cassette—its Dada-esque cover art a repurposed Chinese takeout menu—Andrew Savage, who is also a visual artist, presented the facts unsentimentally. "Facebook pages/ Boring boring!/ Rock'n'roll has got me snoring," he gasped over a skeleton of atonal guitar-noise, ultimately landing upon the most sacred of conclusions: "Music! Matters! More than ever! Free your brain and conform never!" Lucky for us, Parquet Courts have spent the past five years heeding their own call.
With Human Performance, their third proper album and first for London's legendary Rough Trade Records, Parquet Courts offer a fine testament to rock's continued power and relevance. They might mine the past for feedback and eccentricities, but their astute lyrics tackle the present head-on—co-songwriters Savage and Austin Brown write as if their songs might have real-world consequences. Parquet Courts emerged at a good time, when we yearn for something slightly more intellectual and aware and less about vibe—a longing that has spread into all areas of music culture. While not explicitly political, Parquet Courts are definitely a thinking band, and a critical one, which is equally important when the world is falling apart.
A1. Dust A2. Human Performance A3. Outside
A4. I Was Just Here
A6. Captive Of The Sun
A7. Steady On My Mind
B1. One Man No City B2. Berlin Got Blurry
B3. Keep It Even
B4. Two Dead Cops
B5. Pathos Prairie
B6. It's Gonna Happen