Music Reviews


Parenthetical Girls “Entanglements”

It’s midweek in a hot, sticky un-renovated club on Sixth Street when a skinny man wanders into the crowd with a microphone screaming about love with a turmoil far beyond his young years. This bizarre cabaret sounding act is known as the Parenthetical Girls. Their strange sound fills their latest album, “Entanglements” with angst and dramatic accompaniment that will seductively draw the listener along on their bizarre musical journey.

It’s quite refreshing to see a band willing to produce and perform music that in one breath is engrossing and yet invokes for the audience polar opinions on the legitimacy of their actions and lyrics. There is an air of pretension and edginess
in the theatrical voice of lead singer Zac Pennington. Elements of 1960s pop
are woven into the album, specifically with the orchestral arrangement on
every track. From the clarinet solos to the blaring brass, the listener will immediately notice something is different with this band.

Pennington and his posse choose to reflect the musical style of the Dresdon Dolls while twisting and mixing with the lyrical prose of The Decemberists. The sound is unusually unique and one that will continue to lead the listener down a path of excitement and strangeness at every turn. Make sure to check out the musical goodness that is “Four Words” and “Unmentionables”.

Polka Dot Dot Dot

It would be a shame to underestimate the simplistic styling of Polka Dot Dot Dot’s a cappella style. This recently reunited band provides the listener with beautiful folky bluegrass songs that blend unique vocals with ukuleles, banjos, harps and other earthy gizmos. “Small Words Bigger Lessons” is stripped down to the trio’s vocals accompanied by stomping and clapping, which further defined them as a stand out at this year’s Gay Bi Gay Gay festival, which helps close out SXSW. You can’t help but imagine this beautiful music filling a Saturday morning lounging with your coffee as the morning sun peeks through your window shades. It’s a musical world filled with artists of multiple layers. Polka Dot Dot Dot simply lays out their raw unique sound for the audience to enjoy. Somehow this comes across as a much needed breath of fresh air. Perhaps it’s the passionate ukulele plucking, but these slightly nerdy folksters are somehow making folk music sexy.




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