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Parquet Courts debut their new song ‘Watching Strangers Smile’ live on ‘Ellen’


New York indie-rockers Parquet Courts have debuted their new single ‘Watching Strangers Smile’ live on The Ellen DeGeneres Show. Taken from the group’s recent album Sympathy For Life – released back in October – the new song sees Andrew Savage, Austin Brown, Sean Yeaton, and Max Savage continue to home in on their anthemic blend of angsty nerd-rock.

‘Watching Strangers Smile, which was recorded during the sessions for their recent Rodaidh McDonald-produced LP, landed on streaming services at midnight last night (January 12th). In support of the release, Parquet Courts took to the Ellen stage to give the track its stonking live debut.

Parquet Courts will be one of the last musical acts to perform on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, this being the last ever season of the long-running American chat show. Announcing the news, DeGeneres, who has been hosting the show since 2003, said: “Two years ago, I signed a deal for three more years and I always knew in my heart that season 19 would be my last”.

Describing the origins of ‘Watching Strangers Smile’ in a statement, frontman Andrew Savage said: “Interestingly enough, this song is the B-side to the ‘Black Widow Spider’ single, which was released only in Japan via Big Love Records”.

He went on to add: “The music was recorded during the sessions for Sympathy For Life, but it was left unfinished. I recorded the vocals on my own to sort of keep from going stir crazy that first lockdown summer. Apologies to my neighbours for the long afternoon spent screaming these vocals in my bedroom”.

During their Ellen performance, Parquet Courts also performed ‘Stoned and Starving’ from their 2013 album Light Up Gold – which was requested by the titular host herself. This particular live cut, however, is due to be released a little later down the line.

In June, Parquet Courts will cross the Atlantic to embark on a string of tour dates across the UK and Ireland. Any remaining tickets are available here, and you can check out the tour schedule below:

Parquet Courts UK Tour Dates:

8 – Chalk, Brighton
9 – O2 Brixton Academy, London
11 – Helix, Dublin
12 – Albert Hall, Manchester
13 – Stylus, Leeds
15 – Barrowland Ballroom, Glasgow
16 – O2 Institute, Birmingham