After replacing their drummer and bassist numerous times, releasing multiple tracks on some compilations and scattering a handful of singles around Europe, the Paris-based band Parlor Snakes have finally finished their first full-length album. Let’s Get Gone. It’s a sexy and energetic infusion of rock, blues and rockabilly, clocking in at just over thirty-two minutes.
The LP jumps right into it with Peter K’s riff-stroked and twang-laced guitar in “Snake Crawl” while vocalist Eugénie Alquezar swaggers in soon afterwards with a chilly murmur of organ only to be juxtaposed with her heated chants that seem to conjure up perhaps a lost love – “calling out, calling out for you baby.”
Alquezar’s lyrics, when they’re not struggling for attention with the rest of the band, reveal a sense of deep attachment to the recipient as in the third track – “I’m nobody’s bitch but yours” – only to be pushed mysteriously aside in the fourth – “I don’t want your love no more.” She gives the feeling that the relationship is precarious and on the verge of either disaster or bliss.
“Like A Dog,” the fifth and most energetic track tempts one away from the push and pull lyrics to the front stage of CBGB’s c. 1976 to temporarily forget about an ex-love just long enough to see Alquezar looking back singing “your tongue hangs out like a dog.”
The last half of the Let’s Get Gone downshifts slightly. The heartbeat rhythms of drummer Yujim begin to flirt with monotony and bassist Sue Shea finally makes a noticeable appearance in “Wild Eyes,” a track supported by Peter K’s layering and Alquezar’s intriguing lyrics – “Wild wild eyes, forget what you’re told. They’ll promise you good times, they’ll promise you gold.” – that just make it interesting enough for a good finish. Guest saxophonist Fabien Lelarge blasts through the eighth track “Get Down” that begs the question why he shouldn’t make more cameos.
It’s surprising to hear Let’s Get Gone and remember that nobody in the band is native to the United States, because the album evokes so many distinct images such as the California desert, leopard skin, plush velvet couches and a smoke-filled bar that might come out of some David Lynch film. Alquezar’s passionate vocals curling up to her organ and the rattlesnake sounds of Peter K’s guitar maintain a connection to the American West.
On the whole, Let’s Get Gone grabs one by the snakeskin jacket and pushes them onto the dance floor, although at the same time balancing the fieriness of riff-centered rock with cool and sustained vocals. A solid first LP by a band carving their niche in the land of independent rock and roll.
Let’s Get Gone will be available on January 23rd. For more information, please visit: http://www.facebook.com/parlorsnakes