New York-via-Texas alt-punks, Parquet Courts, have announced details for their upcoming studio album titled Sympathy for Life.
The new record is either the sixth Parquet Courts LP, or the seventh you count their collaboration with Italian composer Daniele Luppi Milano, or their eighth if you could the album Content Nausea, which was largely recorded by guitarist/singers Andrew Savage and Austin Brown and released under the band name “Parkay Quarts”. If this sounds confusing, don’t worry, it’s all part of the Parquet Courts experience.
In any case, Sympathy for Life will be the quartet’s first release since 2018’s Wide Awake!, and will find the band returning to their more experimental roots. “Most of the songs were created by taking long improvisations and moulding them through our own editing,” Brown explains in a press release. “The biggest asset we have as artists is the band. After 10 years together, our greatest instrument is each other. The purest expression of Parquet Courts is when we are improvising.”
“Wide Awake! was a record you could put on at a party,” Brown continues. “Sympathy For Life is influenced by the party itself. Historically, some amazing rock records have been made from mingling in dance music culture – from Talking Heads to Screamadelica. Our goal was to bring that into our own music. Each of us, in our personal lives, has been going to more dance parties. Or rather, we were pre-pandemic, which is when this record was made.”
Along with the album, the band have also released the first single from the record, ‘Walking at a Downtown Pace’, that works as a fusion of the bass-heavy sounds of Wide Awake! and indie rock drive of Light Up Gold, returning the band to their observational approach towards their adopted home base of New York City.
“We see New York City from the vantage point of someone busily hurrying through it,” explains Savage. “That’s what life can be like here; a world of constant motion surrounds you while you’re just walking toward where you need to be. There’s a lot of beauty that can be missed, and it wasn’t until the streets were virtually empty that I did miss it. The song was written before all quarantine, but eerily enough the lyrics echo that longing. Now the city is back and, so it seems, are Parquet Courts.”
Check out the video for ‘Walking at a Downtown Pace’, plus the tracklisting for Sympathy of Life, down below. Sympathy of Life will be released on October 22.
Sympathy of Life tracklist:
1. Walking At A Downtown Pace
2. Black Widow Spider
3. Marathon of Anger
4. Just Shadows
5. Plant Life
6. Application Apparatus
7. Homo Sapien
8. Sympathy For Life
9. Zoom Out