Parsons Rocket Project: Self-Titled EP (New Texture, 2017)
Atlanta, Georgia based Parsons Rocket Project is about to release their debut self-titled EP. Their sound is a mixture of shoegaze elements with solid pop structures and deeply gorgeous ambient moments. Parsons Rocket Project consists of K Michelle (vocals), Jody Hasty (Synth, Electric Piano, Drums), Paul Curry (Bass), Benjamin Price (Guitar, Percussion), and Jeff Holt. The EP is a distillation of difficult times for various members in the band with very real-life struggles at the core of the tracks. Six brief tracks in total, Parsons Rocket Project’s self-titled EP is a symphony of pain and triumph, blending various genres masterfully to evince a sonically evocative tale.
“Exit Launch” begins the EP with buzzing tones mixed with a dreamy, light ambient mood. This is joined by shimmering cymbals and then the band joins, with bass, percussion, and fuzzy edged, floating guitars joining the mix. Hasty’s vocals are dreampop perfection as the guitars soar and dive throughout the track. The shimmering tonal qualities along with the rough edges in the guitar tones provide a brilliant tonal texture to this track. “Interlude I” is a beautiful ambient piece with a dense drone providing a floor over which spacy synths and lightly, dazzling guitars play a melody. The bass and percussion are sparse and never invade too much, leaving “Interlude I” as a compositionally gorgeous ambient track.
“Burn” is the most radio accessible song on that EP. It begins, right out of the gate, with a strong pop structure with a slight twang. However, it’s only 1:37 in length, betraying the sort of structural integrity the band gives the track. There is no gristle here but rather a fine tunes brief moment of pop muscularity. “One More Call” moves back into ambient introspection as synth fueled drones float through the speakers. A deep, bass tone provides a floor as ever so slight bright blips dot the soundscape. A snare comes into the mix before the track ends its brief time in the spotlight. This leads into “Solar Flare”.
“Solar Flare” has deeply drenched reverb vocals that have an almost darkwave quality to them in their rawness. Guitars are as dreamy as ever as they climb and fall, playing a melody that acts a foil to the harder edged vocals. Bass and percussion keep time, moving the track forward, never overstepping their bounds. “Interlude II” blends without pause with “Solar Flare” and begins with playfully delayed guitar tones. Drums and bass bring structure while floating, ghostly vocals pass deep in the mix. About halfway through the track, the band moves closer to a shoegaze moment, as wah fueled guitar leaps above aggressive bass and percussion.
Parsons Rocket Project’s debut EP is a wonderful surprise and let’s hope we get a full length out of this band soon. Moving deftly from ambient moments to dreampop and shoegaze fullness, Parsons Rocket Project proves that they are masters of multiple genres and are able to meld them into something wonderful.
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