Monday, March 13, 2023

The Parlor Meditate on Insecurities and Regret on ‘Serpentine’

New York Based, husband and wife, neo-psych/ dream pop duo, The Parlor comprised of Eric Krans and Jen O’Connor have a pretty storied past in the music industry.

Active since the late 90s, they previously went under the title, We are Jeneric, a playful riff on both of their names. After the name change they hit the ground running with 2012’s Our Day In the Sun, a fairly tight, lo-if, experimental indie pop record that revolves around acoustic instruments, in the vein of acts like Neutral Milk Hotel and The Microphones

From there, they moved on to a higher fidelity version of that sound on 2015’s Wahzu Wahzu, an album that saw them trading the acoustic stylings of the previous album for heavier, more pulsating drum patterns, dynamic vocal layering and beautiful ambient synths. Ever the audacious group; 2018’s Kiku saw the duo make another engagingly executed left turn in their sound, opting for a more minimal indie pop soundscape which would lay the foundation for the sounds they explore on their most recent single, ‘Serpentine’. ‘Serpentine’, is a hazy, dream-like exploration of feeling insecurity and regret.

The track buzzes to life with the harsh synths, underscored by a wobbly yet warm electric piano, bouncing bass and indie guitar riff before the first verse comes in. The lyrics “I feel like a fool… I feel like I’m standing here with no feet on the ground” Koran the track setting its dower thematic tone as the ambient, dream-like instrument swirls and hums along in the background. The track goes on the outline the feeling of being insecure and regretting the past relatively straightforwardly with the refrain, “If I could take it back for good / Time’s a empty Serpentine”, comparing regret to a snake like cyclical manure one gets trapped in while a skitting arpeggiated piano and dense vocal harmonies are introduced into the mix. The buzzing synths from the intro make a final return before the last refrain before the song fizzles out.

Altogether, ‘Serpentine’ is a fantastically introspective dream pop track that fans of bands like Tame Impala and Beach House are sure to enjoy!

Kenneth Butcher


Image: 'Serpentine’ Official Single Cover

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