Parsnip And The Shifters – Hip Blister

‘Hip Blister’ is a split release from Parsnip and The Shifters. Available on Future Folklore Records this unassuming ‘little’ dispatch marries the elements of both bands that show the best of themselves, and each other.

Parsnip sing ‘Conterfeit’ with a breezy, easy warmth but continues to shimmer with their subtle subversion. Gently driven, this low-fi track throws back to a kind of post punk, but it doesn’t lose it’s target – there’s a sharpness of vision at the centre. Maybe this is what the band mean when they call themselves ‘Queen Wave’. Paris Richens on bass keeps things soothing, rather than rolling – and the results are a kind of confident intimacy. Immediately singable, ultimately danceable, and inviting as hell. It’s a characterful track that follows the release of ‘Feeling Small‘ – a genuine delight of a track, that offered a more angular, but equally shrewd portrait of ambitions.

By contrast, ‘Photo Op’ from The Shifters is a seemingly darker edge. Guitars don’t drive as much as they do load up with a spiraling sense of possibility. Nothing showy, nothing fancy – a healthy amount of punk-riffing. But beneath the obvious is a more surprising off-kilter approach to delivering melody. The result is a dizzying, pleasantly perplexing sequence of passages. The track arrives as a small patchwork of concerns – issues rub against each other, progressions climb, drop, dislocate.  The subject here is authenticity, and again, mirroring Parsnip’s track – the gold is in the simplicity of mode.

Future Folklore records have done well with this release. This is an exercise in contrasts. We’re shown unity in diversity, as two rising bands share humility and ambition. Parsnip and The Shifters deliver good gear, and compliment each other in the process.


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