New Jersey based rockers The Parlor Mob have completed recording their highly anticipated new album and follow-up to And You Were A Crow. The sophomore effort was produced by Matt Radosevich and tracked in Austin, Texas. Roadrunner Records recently had the chance to sit down with the band to shed some light on the new album.
Be sure to check out the new photo gallery which gives you an inside like at the recording process.
Roadrunner Records: The voice of The Parlor Mob is one-of-a-kind. Frontman Mark Melicia had this to say about where he is heading lyrically on the new album:
The lyrical content of this record picks up where And You Were A Crow left off. It could be compared to chapters in a book. The story line progresses but the points of view and protagonists remain the same. Themes of the struggle to find your way, social observations, and personal reflections continue but, in new more realized ways. The level of song writing has progressed greatly, as well as the musical landscapes, providing a more vivid experience for the listener. And You Were A Crow was the voice of young men searching for themselves in a brand new world of adult hood. This latest effort is the roar of those same young men now deeply rooted in their sense of selves.
Roadrunner Records: One of the defining qualities of The Parlor Mob sound is the distinct guitar voices of both Paul Ritchie and David Rosen. The approach on the new recordings and their interaction in their own words:
Dave and I have been playing together for a long time at this point so the interaction between the two of us is never discussed. It’s just something we do, and have done for awhile now. It’s just like anything else, the more you do it the better you get, more comfortable, more mature. It becomes second nature.
The tones and performances (on this album) are completely different because the material is completely different. We do our best to make sure that the tones compliment the songs because in the end that's all that matters. The performances are all taken from our live tracks with a punch in, or overdub here and there.
For me I've found that after however many years, Paul and I don't really have to think about the interaction between us anymore. We both just pick up each others’ slack and shove each other further along the road as songwriters and guitarists. We know more than ever when to counter each other, when to jump out ahead of one another and when to play as one guitarist. We certainly don't think about it anymore, it just comes naturally when we're writing now. As far as our tones and performances go, we've learned a lot about what it is we like and how to achieve it exactly. Our Producer Matt is very adamant about us achieving exactly what we want, which is amazing. He never tells us, "That’s too crazy", or "That’s too ugly" or anything. If I'm doing a track and I make some horrendous squeal that peaks out on the board, and I like it, Matt doesn't tell me to change it, he changes the mic setup or whatever to capture it. He appreciates what we're doing and it makes it easier for us to expand our horizons both in tones and performances. We don't feel limited at all. In fact, Paul and I are taking an approach to this record of using the experimentation we've gotten used to from live shows and just applying it to the record.
We're literally doing whatever we want, and it's great.
Roadrunner Records: Rhythm is one of the driving forces of The Parlor Mob’s live performances. Drummer Sam Bey wanted a new approach this time around in an effort to capture his live sound on tape.
Recording the drums for this new record was much different than on And You Were A Crow. Our producer Matt is really into drums so a lot more time was spent getting the right sounds for the right songs. He and I sat down first thing and kind of mapped out the songs - which songs were going to have a bigger sound along with a close mic “in tight” kind of sound. We were constantly switching out snares until we got the right sound. Matt has an amazing ear so we also spent some time actually tuning drums to the key of the song we were recording. I thought that was a very interesting approach. As far as my actual playing, I really concentrated on playing for the song. We decided that we were not going to use the best take just because it was perfect and instead use the take that felt the best even if it wasn't perfect. On And You Were A Crow, I remember really trying to play my parts well. This time around the parts kind of played themselves so to speak. I think that really says a lot about the songs this time around. It’s going to come across great on the record. People can tell when listening to a record if the music was over thought. You can truly tell on these recordings that we are loose and just playing together in the room.
Roadrunner Records: Part of the retooling process for the band has been a personnel change in the rhythm section. Newcomer Anthony has been a friend of the band for years, so the fit was an easy one as the band’s new bass player.
It has been great. I feel very fortunate to be involved in a project that is so professional and talented. The approach I took to finding my identity on this record was to just kinda not over think anything and do what comes natural to me. Understanding ideas and getting the feel of things and just letting whatever felt right happen. If I felt like what I wrote wasn't right or if I didn’t quite get an idea, I would ask questions and have an open mind to any ideas. I think the main thing I did was to always play instinctively.
Live in the New York area? Be sure to catch The Parlor Mob on tour!
5/14 – Brooklyn Bowl - (Onsale 4/1 at Noon ET)
5/28 – Stone Pony - (Onsale 4/1 at 10am ET)