On a sweaty evening in the Kazimier, the June before last, Parquet Courts delivered a youthful, raucous and defiant set. This Wednesday they returned to Liverpool, to the soon-to-be-familiar Invisible Wind Factory, showcasing new tunes, a mellower maturity and some of the same jokes.
With a little soft sunlight still peeking in around the curtains that seal the gig space from the rest of the warehouse, support act Housewives become the first touring band to play the new venue. Their dissonant, pulsating experimental songs sparking interest among the already busy crowd. Perhaps noting similarities between these Londoners’ raw, DIY sound and the headliner’s 2015 EP, Monastic Living.
The night, a joint venture between local super-promoters Harvest Sun and Evol, sees the Brooklyn four piece rattle through a set of scuzzy pop rock. Early highlights include: “Berlin Got Blurry”, a Texan bass riff bridging between Andrew’ Savages plaintive verses; “I was just here” a lament for a lost Chinese takeaway and “Master of my craft” a familiar bouncy anthem that has the punters jumping for the first time.
Savage takes a breather to congratulate the city on its interesting venues, exclaiming his love for “the flying wind factory, it beats playing the same venue every night”. Pointing up to the large circular lighting rig/ceremonial relic above the stage, Bassist Sean Yeaton interjects “it’s like a street fighter car smash level”. You know what he means, the theatrical flourishes already showing this is no ordinary gig space.
Then, a collective déjà vu hits the room, sparked by a “jibe” from guitarist Austin Brown “Oasis, you know, the famous band from Liverpool…” . This was the same schtick we’d heard back in the Kaz. The awkwardness doesn’t last, lost when we launch into “Dust”, at first Brown’s foreboding synth then collective psychedelic wigouts. After that the crowd doesn’t get to rest, “Human Performance”, “Borrowed Time”, “Vienna II”, “Light Up Gold” all roaring and moshing. After all that, now past curfew, the band leave the stage quickly, and the audience dissipate to the bar and yard, tired and smiling.
Parquet Courts showed they are a band that are in control, their songs of cynical, urban modernity resonated with the congregation. The newer material and the bands performance both more knowing and less wild than two years previous. The result was a night that was nothing less than great fun. As a start for the Invisible Wind factory there can be few complaints, The Kazimier lives on, and it’s back to business as unusual.