Eric Schackne

REVIEW: Morning Parade – ‘Morning Parade’

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What if Ben Gibbard seduced the members of MUTEMATH and Thom Yorke was there to film it?  Well, the power packed inside Morning Parade’s self-titled release will surely make you ponder that after a mere matter of minutes.  On with the parade!

Noise, oh holy noise.  There’s a cool and collected quality to their interesting electro-break-beat style with “Blue Winter.”  This is savvy song writing here.  Synth and guitar parts weave in and around the incessent drum beat.  They’ve created quick a theatrical opening with this track, tapping into some really great dynamic choices for the mix.  “Headlights” keeps us up and running with a huge intro, laying the groundwork for an epic dance track.  This time, it’s a chorus of ahhs that’ll lift up the chorus.  Morning Parade plays as one entity with each instrumental aspect plugging up any empty spaces in the progressions.

A  low-key trance opening is met by a four on the floor disco, and the thinness of Steve Sparrow’s voice is speckled with Thom Yorke’s inflections.  That feeling is lost to a full-swingin’ chorus that’ll most definitely convince you to sing along.  The eery swell into ”Running Down The Aisle” hits you from a different angle.  Steve Sparrow’s melody along with the chord progression sends my mind searching for a song Andrew McMahon may have created.  At almost the same note as the last song ends, “Us And Ourselves” builds with strong vocal production on an eventual wall of voices.  This track has a ton of headphones-friendly moments too.  There’s a ceiling of synth that lays nicely on top of the vocals, which lay comfortably on the intense rhythm section.

“Under The Stars” takes time and dices it up smoothly into asymetrical pieces.  This all develops into an epic latin and reggae-infused beat.  This song is all about style, and each part brings a more involved and intricately composed piece of the puzzle; not a part played twice without playing it more exiting than the last.

Moving to the mid-tempo of “Close To Your Heart” actually relaxes me a little, despite the sharp sounds.   That doesn’t mean it won’t build, because this is just as theatrical as everything so far.  “Half Litre Bottle” imediatley soothes me further with an easy clean guitar and intimate vocals.  Sparrow has such a beautiful voice; he’s holding up this stripped down song.

Electronic percussive sounds and the distorted ambience of strings and guitar sets the mood for “Monday Morning.”  This song is almost an electronic version of something Augustana might have written, and this isn’t the first time I’ve thought that.  This is a beautiful song.  I’m enjoying how they’ve varied up their style a bit, and each song has felt pretty disparate and interesting in it’s own way.

Before their final track, Morning Parade gives us “Speechless” that prooves to be a substantial addition to the album.  “Born Alone” closes out the record.  Synths, guitars, and drums ease you into a very MUTEMATH-esque verse.  They remain pretty patient with this track, never lifting it up too much too soon.  I feel like this record was mixed through headphones.  I’m finding the mix as well-crafted as the instrumental parts of the song.  The chorus isn’t the only part that is worth the wait.  They close out this self –titled effort confidently through a roller coaster of ambient electro-indie-rock.

I just reviewed Runner by The Winter Sounds and Morning Parade hits me in almost the exact same place.  Beautifully-crafted music for the musicians out there and catchy enough for the music fans.  Go get ‘em:   http://morningparade.com

 

TRACK LIST:

  1. Blue Winter
  2. Headlights
  3. Carousel
  4. Running Down The Aisle
  5. Us And Ourselves
  6. Under The Stars
  7. Close To Your Heart
  8. Half Litre Bottle
  9. Monday Morning
  10. Speechless
  11. Born Alone

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