Parlour BellsTT’s Viva la Eva Benefit - 09/04/14
Review and photos by John Keegan
You have to like it when the local rock wheel of fortune spins by punk, clicks past garage, slips beyond Americana, squeaks over the metal peg and lands on glam. Now and then a town needs a few sequins and some groovy dark shimmy in the beat to cleanse a sticky palate. Send the black leather out to be hand cleaned. Leave the flannel in the hamper. Put on your red shoes.
Tonight, Goddamn Glenn fronts the Parlour Bells in a black sequin vest. He has a shiny gold lion head medallion dangling from his neck. He is sporting a black slacks version of the Ziggy’s clothes to phone home in. The man wears his Bowie loud and proud. He leans toward the deeper, suave crooner side of the TWD’s range. He also shows off a versatile upper range.
A gaggle of great bands are kicking in for the Viva la Eva benefit so it’s a relatively short set. The band is in good form. Goddamn Glenn is the focal point. Posing and preening and singing to the cheap seats. If the band threw a cape on him it would be a silk smoker. He’s wrapped like a snake around the microphone stand. GG wears the clothes in this house. He’s ready for his close up.
Who can’t use a little hazy romance in the demi monde? Eine kleine Nachtmusik as respite to blown out ears in a town full of rockers? A synth riff kicks off most tunes although the sound tonight isn’t especially sympathetic to Magen Tracy’s efforts. Nate Leavitt’s guitar has an atmospheric tone key to Parlour Bells sound, rich but not too thick. Chewy but not too crunchy. His shroomy solo stretch-outs hit the spot. Underneath it all, Brendan Boogie’s bass, Paul Myer’s drums and Tracy’s keys keep things percolating.
The big ebb and flow melodies grab you. The late night melodramas pull you in. The hooks, whether expansive or poppy, lure you in. The tunes smolder then crackle and shoot out sparks. The kids sway in the firelight. Tonight the band keeps it cool. Pour some high test gasoline on a couple of these fine tunes and they could set the midnight lounge on fire.
Parlour Bells have a sophisticated rock sound that you don’t
hear around town every night. Check them out with your android paramour.
BGN: Tell us about your recent recording.