Before I ever heard Parachute Musical play a note, I knew I would love them. Why? Simply because lead singer Josh Foster is Christopher Jak‘s doppelganger – and I do not need to repeat again how much I love Mr. Jak. Pretty sure he already considers me a stalker. But I digress…
In all seriousness, the first time I saw Parachute Musical play, I was H-O-O-K-E-D. It would be hard for these kids to avoid the Ben Folds references thanks to Foster’s stand-up, high energy, knock the keys around piano stylings, but they deserve to shine without the comparison. Absolutely fantastic up-tempo melodies, witty lyrics, perfect pitch vocals, downright mad crazy bass lines – all topped off with some mean shaker and tambourine skills – it’s edgy pop perfection, really.
So count me among the faithful that logged onto their website Tuesday morning to download their new album, Kill It Cut It Down for a measly $2. Talk about rewarding your fan base; the price goes up by $1 every day until it gets to $10. So add marketing genius to their skill set. [Go get the album.]
The foursome, who originally hail from D.C. but relocated to Nashville a few years back, have created an 11-song musical novella that is certain to carve a swath to some big time attention for them. Along with Foster, Tom Gilbert (guitar), Andrew Samples (bass) and Ben Jacoby (drums) address traditional youthful angst in a dizzying carousel ride of love and relationships, heartbreak, insomnia, self-discovery, disappointment in people, impetuousness and regret – in their own words, a “quarter-life crisis in full effect.” It’s a logical and welcome progression from 2008’s Everything Is Working Out Fine In Some Town. Yes, young bands can grow up gracefully, and it’s awfully fun to hear in the case of Parachute Musical.
My favorite tracks include the 70s reminiscent “Stubborn Young Manhood”; the title track and its pounding, rhythmic chorus line that I’ll inevitably find myself walking around singing arbitrarily for the next several days; and the sharply uncharacteristic “Losing You,” noticeably lacking Foster’s killer keys and instead sporting a very Dion and the Belmonts-esque sing songy guitar foundation.
The long and short? If have a need to relive your impassioned younger years, you’re going to adore this record. But more importantly, if you enjoy a good piano tune, appreciate great vocals, a devilishly catchy melody and clever wordsmithing, and absolutely need to discover a new band whose star is shining bright, you must jump on into Parachute Musical’s Kill It Cut It Down – and don’t bother with the ripcord. This is music worth freefalling into.