Imagine the perfect hipster scenario at your perfect local venue.
Someone to your right is serving homemade meatballs in boxes. A hipster dad poses in front of the stage for a photo with what looks like a five-month-old baby in a carrier on his chest. It’s dark. It’s hot as F. You’re probably drinking a PBR. You see a lot of beards. You see a lot of tattoos. You have a lot of tattoos. You’re in heaven right now.
And on that stage, filled with great anticipation before the show, is a plain white banner hanging from the ceiling that simply says, “PARQUET COURTS.”
No, you’re REALLY in heaven right now.
I had the pleasure of seeing Parquet Courts perform in Pittsburgh last night at Spirit in Lawrenceville, one of my favorite venues ever. I am a recent PC convert, as my dad called me up and said, “DUDE. PARQUET COURTS IS PLAYING IN PITTSBURGH AND YOU NEED TO BUY TICKETS NOW. IF YOU LIKE LOU REED, YOU WILL LOVE THESE GUYS.”
He was right. Also, my dad created this website you are reading right now, so he knows what he is talking about.
I have been listening to Human Performance on repeat every. single. day. So, I bought my tickets.
As the band took the stage last night, Austin Brown found out that his mic wasn’t working. He kept saying something we couldn’t hear. Suddenly, we all heard, “YAS QUEEN. YAS.” In addition to being incredibly talented poets and songwriters, who present a range of genres in one sitting of a concert, they’re hilarious. Last night, when they played “Dust,” a track off of the new album, I started cracking up. I suddenly realized how funny this song is and it made me love it even more.
The band started with a huge bang with Sunbathing Animal, the title track of a previous album, which I wasn’t familiar with. I was like, DAYUM. Andrew Savage is a beast. And he had the flu. I can’t text someone when I have the flu, and Andrew tore up every single performance last night.
When he later wailed on “NO NO NO,” I had the distinct feeling that I was witnessing true greatness.
This is what you’re looking for. The Holy Grail band. The second coming of the Velvet Underground with an amazing sense of humor. “I don’t want to be called a poet/ Don’t want to hang in a museum/ Don’t want to be cited, tacked onto your cause/ No, no, no/ I’m just a man.”
My favorite aspect of Parquet Courts is this: they will never allow themselves to be put into a box. One minute, they’re a raging punk band, the next, they’re hilariously singing about the solitary nature of city living.
Speaking of that, the final song was “One Man No City,” my absolute favorite PC song ever. I can’t get enough of it. There is something about Austin channeling a son of Lou Reed that makes my heart swell. It reminds me of the legendary New York album in a way…”No town. No city. No identity. No city. No thoughts no feelings. No city. No you, just me, I think. No city.”
One man solitary. No city.
Well, Parquet Courts is taking over the whole damn country, city by city, so go see them as fast as you can.