Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Parson Red Heads are All Right, Despite Music Snobbery

The Parson Red Heads make me think of late 60's and 70's folk rock, with sunshine and happiness and good vibes flowing freely. One of their influences is Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young. They often look like time-travelled hippies. Also, it sometimes it seems like the band is one of those "musical collectives" where members float freely in and out and jamming is smiled upon (Broken Social Scene, anyone?). According to all of the points above, I should detest this band. Instead, I love them.

Although there may be some factual errors in the video above, it was my introduction to the band, so I'm passing it on (the band members aren't Mormons, for one thing) from I Am Fuel, You Are Friends. I don't even like the same things about the song as the person above, I enjoy the simple guitar right from the beginning of the song, the clattery-but-efficient percussion, and especially the vocals and harmonies. On this song more than others, The Parson Red Heads have cooked up an interesting blend of pop and roots.

Other songs seem more rooted in the 60's pop, 70's rock, and timeless roots veins, but I like it when the harmonies lean more towards Teenage Fanclub, Big Star or the Byrds than CSNY, more Gram Parsons than Fairport Convention (other influences listed on the band's MySpace page include Dream Syndicate, Long Ryders, The Records, and The Nerves, so it should be no surprise that I like 'em, I guess). Maybe members of The Parson Red Heads don't mind dsplaying a wry sense of humour, too, as they list Left Eye Parson, Darth Parson, Stumpy Parson, Missing Parson, and Jumping Jack Parson as Honorary Parsons. I wanna be Scruffy the Yak Parson today.

The Parson Red Heads - Punctual As Usual by scruffy the yak

The Parson Red Heads - You Can Leave It by wereofftherails

A song that should be on the next album:

The band's new full length album should be out soon: a gig on August 17 is listed as a cd release show. Lots of tour dates:

21 Jul 2010 20:00 Plush Inc Tucson, AZ
23 Jul 2010 21:00 Emo's Austin Austin, TX
25 Jul 2010 20:30 Cactus Club Milwaukee, Wisconsin
26 Jul 2010 19:00 Kavarna Green Bay, WI
31 Jul 2010 20:00 Schuba's, w/ Cotton Jones Chicago, IL
1 Aug 2010 20:00 7th Street Entry, w/ Cotton Jones and Morning Teleportation Minneapolis, MN
2 Aug 2010 20:00 The Aquarium, w/ Cotton Jones and Morning Teleportation Fargo, ND
4 Aug 2010 18:30 Dornan's, w/ Cotton Jones and Roadside Graves Moose, WY
5 Aug 2010 20:00 Neurolux, w/ Cotton Jones and Roadside Graves Boise, Idaho
6 Aug 2010 20:00 Old St Francis School Bend, Oregon
7 Aug 2010 19:30 Crystal Ballroom Portland, Oregon
7 Aug 2010 20:00 The Crystal Ballroom Portland, OR
8 Aug 2010 20:00 Sunset Tavern, w/ Cotton Jones Seattle, WA
9 Aug 2010 20:00 The Wild Buffalo w/ Cotton Jones Bellingham, Washington
10 Aug 2010 20:00 Media Club w/ Cotton Jones Vancouver, BC
11 Aug 2010 20:00 Northern, w/ Cotton Jones Olympia, WA
12 Aug 2010 20:00 Sam Bond's Garage, w/ Cotton Jones Eugene, OR
13 Aug 2010 20:00 Bottom of the Hill, w/ Cotton Jones and Roadside Graves San Francisco, CA
14 Aug 2010 20:00 The Crepe Place, w/ Cotton Jones Santa Cruz, CA
16 Aug 2010 20:00 Muddy Waters, w/ Cotton Jones Santa Barbara, CA
17 Aug 2010 20:00 CD RELEASE SHOW @ The Echo w/ Cotton Jones and Roadside Graves Los Angeles, California
19 Aug 2010 20:00 Kilby Court, w/ Cotton Jones Salt Lake City, UT
20 Aug 2010 20:00 Hi Dive, w/ Fruit Bats and Cotton Jones Denver, Colorado
21 Aug 2010 20:00 Jackpot Saloon, w/ Cotton Jones Lawrence, KS
22 Aug 2010 20:00 Schlafly Bottleworks, w/ Cotton Jones Maplewood, MO
23 Aug 2010 20:00 The Basement Nashville, TN
25 Aug 2010 21:00 Hailey's Denton, TX
26 Aug 2010 20:30 Low Spirits Albuquerque, New Mexico
27 Aug 2010 20:30 Plush Inc Tucson, AZ

You can buy The Parson Red Heads here.

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