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Parenthetical Girls

Tortured joy: Parenthetical Girls
Sarah Meadows

Calmness intercepts Zac Pennington's tortured timbre and nervous-breakdown-bordering subject matter when he croons tunes for the Parenthetical Girls, the indie pop ensemble that recently swiped Phoenician Edward Crichton of the recently disbanded and once hugely popular Reindeer Tag Team. The Seattle area-based group — which sounds like Belle and Sebastian in its infancy, right before they blew up — incorporates captivating elements into its alt-radio-friendly sound, such as cute electronic instrumentation, a glockenspiel playing luscious lullabies, and an analog tape delay that could put listeners into a sonic coma with its trancelike hissing. Sharing the evening's bill is The Dead Science, which features crossover members from the Girls crafting even moodier tunes of despair with repetitive bass lines, somber funeral-dirge percussion elements, and distressed SOS vocals in an art-rock style reminiscent of Sleepytime Gorilla Museum. These marketable and accessible niches, especially the Parenthetical Girls, are sure to be plugged into commercial airwaves soon, so be sure to catch them on the cheap at an intimate venue, while you still can.


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