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Featured artist: Parquet Courts
The slackers who flunked at being slackers. Parquet Courts have too much energy to take it easy, ripping on Pavement but then upping the ante, as if they were kids who fell asleep on their desk and then jolted into action to turn them over. Since Light Up Gold, they’ve been retooling their shambolic guitar sound, as well as their lyrics: once disaffected and cynical, they now sound earnest and uncertain, open to the fact that the world is as wise on them as they are on it. The hooks are only getting better; as they age, they sound more urgent, offering the jams up to a globe in crisis.
Parquet Courts are so prolific and obsessed with releasing records they once changed their name to Parkay Quarts as an excuse to put out another record. Offering lower key, more meandering storytelling, it was the first sign of a Parquet Courts band who didn't go full-throttle towards the win or lazily into slumber. From there they made an intriguing series of records: Monastic Living, an abstract noise experiment; Human Performance, a sideways glancing record of classic sounding indie rawk about staying at home and doing your chores; and Wide Awake!, our new favourite Parquet Courts record, produced by Danger Mouse and bringing a deep-thinking funk. We once thought this band would never stop doing what they did on Sunbathing Animal -- now we know just how much to them there is.