Parquet Courts release their forthcoming new album Wide Awake! on May 18 via Rough Trade Records.
Wide Awake! was written by Andrew Savage and Austin Brown, and produced by Danger Mouse. It is the band’s fifth album and the follow-up to their excellent 2016 album, Human Performance.
“The ethos behind every Parquet Courts record is that there needs to be change for the better, and the best way to tackle that is to step out of one’s comfort zone,” says Savage in a press release in regards to working with Danger Mouse. “I personally liked the fact that I was writing a record that indebted to punk and funk, and Brian’s a pop producer who’s made some very polished records. I liked that it didn’t make sense.”
Savage says he was purposefully reacting against the ballads of Human Performance when co-writing the songs on Wide Awake! with bandmate Austin Brown. “I needed an outlet for the side of me that feels emotions like joy, rage, silliness and anger,” he says in a press release, citing such influences as Youth of Today, Gorilla Biscuits, and Black Flag. “All those bands make me want to dance and that’s what I want people to do when they hear our record.”
Brown had this to say in a press release: “In such a hateful era of culture, we stand in opposition to that – and to the nihilism used to cope with that – with ideas of passion and love.”
Yuno both stars in and directs the No Going Back video and offers this of the visual, “The video pretty much represents how I was feeling when I wrote this song. Kind of wandering around, not too sure about where I want to go, but definitely sure about where I don’t want to be. Just trying to make sure I have some fun along the way.”
Yuno was introduced to the label by Ishmael Butler of Shabazz Palaces and Digable Planets fame, who’s a member of Sub Pop’s A&R staff. Butler offers his praise, “First time I heard Yuno, I peeped, of course, that he possessed all the trappings of a great musician, impeccable taste on his riffs, songs catchy but not corny, familiar but dopely strange. There was seductive magic that I couldn’t, and still can’t put my finger on, which is the essence of his uniqueness. Kids a star, man.”
Today, they share lead single Caught In A Wave, which comes accompanied by a video directed by Kiani Del Valle. Del Valle says of the video:
“For ‘Caught In A Wave’ I wanted to explore the idea of chaos. I’ve been fascinated by mosh pits and have always been deeply moved by all the codes in its culture and the science of adrenaline and endorphin release. From pogo to slam dance and hardcore dancing, what mainly excites my eye is the physical impact and the sense of trust and commitment between strangers.”
“Juxtaposing a mosh pit with a choreographed contemporary dance routine, I wanted to create an atmosphere for these two things to not only meet but also to elevate each other. The glue between the two also being the underlying friendship/love story where both characters are continually in the midst of a turning point.”
Marylou Mayniel – aka Oklou – is a French producer, vocalist and composer currently based in London.
The Rite of May is written and produced by Mayniel herself and is her most pop-orientated work to date. The tracks range from the beautiful intimacy of ‘Samuel’ to the expansive club-pop track They Can’t Hear Me, led throughout by her vocals. Additional input was provided from Bok Bok (Kelela, Night Slugs), Rodiah McDonald (The XX, Sampha), Sega Bodega and new Paris engineer Krampf.
Marylou grew up in the countryside of west France, and was first exposed to music through a classical education for piano and cello. She subsequently learnt to produce electronic music on her computer, discovering a new digital world of artists fusing visceral production with their own unique voices.
Moving to Paris three years ago, she founded her radio/DJ crew TGAF and began performing her first live shows under the name Oklou. A series of online releases, mixtapes, collaborations, live shows and DJ sets have established her as a key part of the new European electronic underground scene.
This 6 track EP is released on NUXXE, the young London label created by UK artists coucou chloe, Shygirl and Sega Bodega. The cover art to the EP features a close-up of her family’s front room in western France, as a tribute to memories and lifestyles that inspired her to write The Rite of May.