Parquet Courts haven’t given us a new album in a while, with their last being 2018's critically acclaimed Wide Awake!—but the wait will soon be over. The band announced their next album, Sympathy For Life, will be out on October 22 via Rough Trade Records. The news comes just days after the band debuted tons of new songs at White Eagle Hall in Jersey City. The gig marked their first show back since the pandemic.
The band shared the forthcoming record’s opening track, “Walking At A Downtown Pace” that fans will be happy to know sounds an awful lot like … Parquet Courts. It carries some of the liveliness we heard in Wide Awake!, so we’re off to a great start. And in case you’d forgotten that Parquet Courts are from New York City, the music video couldn’t be more New York. As the song title suggests, the video is shot from the perspective of someone walking around the city, including bodega runs, late night hangs, and encounters with rats.
“Wide Awake! was a record you could put on at a party,” says co-frontman and guitarist Austin Brown in a press release. “Sympathy For Life is influenced by the party itself. Historically, some amazing rock records have been made from dabbling in dance music culture–from Talking Heads to Screamadelica. Our goal was to bring that into our own music. Each of us, in our personal lives, has been going to more dance parties. Or rather, we were pre-pandemic, which is when this record was made.”
He adds, “Most of the songs were created by taking long improvisations and moulding them through our own editing. The biggest asset we have as artists is the band. After 10 years together, our greatest instrument is each other. The purest expression of Parquet Courts is when we are improvising.”
The band will also host “Feel Free-Sympathy For Life, Visualised,” a livestream of 11 videos for each song on the record, that’ll come out two days before the album. It’s a virtual ticketed event, but you’d get to hear the record ahead of its release and get access to exclusive merch available only to ticket buyers.