Thursday, December 31, 2009
Wednesday, December 23, 2009
Thursday, December 17, 2009
Originally published in a December issue of prairie dog magazine.
You Should Have Killed Us When You Had the Chance
Proof there’s no God: The Parkas were twice as good as Two Hours Traffic, yet somehow failed to reach even half the national profile of the Two Minute Miracles. The Parkas played their final show last July in Toronto and you probably didn’t even know they existed until you read this paragraph. WTF, my friends?
You Should Have Killed Us When You Had the Chance comes to us like an infant in a rocketship from a doomed planet. Each song is a feat of strength magnified by our yellow sun and lesser gravity. “Isolation Pay” is David Bowie’s “Rebel Rebel” ferociously played as if an outtake from This Year’s Model, the lyrics rewritten as a convincing blue collar anthem. “Bad Comedian” is one of two odd setpieces (the other is the brilliantly simple “Face the Facts”), a roman a clef that recalls Toronto writer Jason Anderson’s overlooked 2005 novel Showbiz in the way it plies the tragedy out of comedy and then socks it right back. “Brighton Hurricane”, “Don’t Say No” and “The Gang’s All Gone” are prime examples of the meaty, muscular brand of rock the Parkas have always excelled at. “Goodnight, Nemesis” calls back to the themes of the Parkas’ first album, 2003’s Now This Is Fighting, and highlights how the band has matured. Back then, on “Giants in My Field” the Parkas cheekily riffed on Aretha, spelling “R-E-V-E-N-G-E, find out what it means to me.” Now, older and wiser, they broodingly tell us “Sometimes justice is just a grudge." You Should Have Killed Us... shows a band that held on to all that was good and interesting about itself and continuously found new ways to make it work.
mp3: "Face the Facts" by Parkas from their new, final album You Should Have Killed Us When You Had the Chance
mp3: "Scam the Tram" by Parkas from their first album Now This is Fighting
Sunday, December 13, 2009
Wednesday, December 09, 2009
Monday, December 07, 2009
Thursday, December 03, 2009
Tuesday, December 01, 2009
I live in Vancouver, I don't actually need a parka. I could get away with a windbreaker over a sweater. Growing up on the Prairies, though, I had some parkas, yes sir. Big puffy numbers from the Hobo Shop, three-quarter length Hudson's Bay doozies, and yeah, oversized army surplus parkas. When I was 15, everyone I knew either had a green army surplus parka or was about to get one. Friday nights we slouched and loitered around the South End of Regina imagining ourselves ruthless street toughs until the minivans and station wagons rolled into the DJ Cinnamons parking lot at 9:30 to take us home, where, if we were lucky, our mothers would make us hot cocoa and popcorn.
mp3: "The Gang's All Gone" by Parkas