Hierophants - Parallax Error - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

Hierophants - Parallax Error

by Jim Harris Rating:10 Release Date:2015-11-13

Some bands are just cool, cool music, hip delivery, campy literate attitude, you blend that with up-tempo rock and roll and you wonder how Goner Records, who specializes in finding great bands like this, does it. With the release of Parallax Error by Hierophants, Goner Records, out of Memphis, Tennessee have done it again. (Hierophants, by the way, are priests who interpret sacred mysteries or esoteric principles. There isn’t anything particularly sacred about this band but they sure are pleasantly esoteric. I would suspect that the name just sounded cool …)

And from the opening Chuck Berry-esque guitar that abruptly transitions into a neo-B-52s hipster dance track, you are acutely aware that something special is coming out of Memphis. But of course, the band is from Australia and is a four-piece that has power-pop guitars and the coolest most retro and acid-drenched keyboards from the only female in the band that could make you think there’s a new heir to Zia McCabe from the Dandies.

The sheer hip oddness of their sound initially conjures up everything from Devo on through Art Brut but neither of those bands match the energy or psych influence that this band has.

Parallax Error starts it off with a campy sort of mid-tempo tune called ‘Stress’  that has a lazy rhythm that seems to be at odds with the manic guitar that appears to go off in weird directions, but it works brilliantly to draw you in.  The second track ‘Change’ slows it down a bit and does indeed sound like a richer Art Brut in execution, but then Paris Richens, the keyboardist, breaks in to lead sing the third track ‘Bain Marie’ and it builds in momentum from there.

From there you are hooked into exactly what literate hipster bands who are better than all the rest can do to you.

Hierophants have that certain odd esthetic that doesn’t pop up very often.  The guitars are loud and drift in and out of hard psych riffing and into pounding dance marches, and the male lead singer has that sort of vulnerable but sassy execution that blends well with it all.  But for me, the keyboards of Paris Richens, sets the tunes on fire.  The best track to hear this on is ‘Fagg Hopp.’  It is plain and simply too cool.

There may not have been such a consistent set of quirky, beautifully odd, wonderfully rock and rolling tunes since the Cars’ Candy-OParallax Error should be on many top ten lists in 2015.

Comments (2)

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Eighty Zero is very oddball. The sound production is kind of amateurish but I guess that's part of the hipness, to extract all the warmth.

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Strangely, there's another band of Italian punks called Heirophant that are touring Australia soon !

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