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Parcels at Manchester Academy, In Review

Groovy basslines, funky keyboard rhythms and pure 70s aesthetic encompass all that Parcels are.

Parcels at Manchester Academy, In Review

The lights were out. The room dark. The audience silent.

A beam of golden light pierces the gloom. The Parcels logo illuminates the sky.

People cheer. People laugh. People cry. I think I even saw a guy in a wheelchair stand up.

Okay, those last two may have been a stretch, but it was still a cracking entrance.

Rocking a look that I can only describe as “Exceptionally 70s”, Parcels took to the stage with the kind of energy and excitement that can only really be mustered early in a tour. It was the very first gig of this tour, and it seemed that Parcels were as excited to be there as the rest of us were.

As soon as they start playing, people start grooving. I’ve never seen a room take to dancing so quickly, so unanimously. But really, how could you not dance to rhythms like that? The thought is as inconceivable as trying to see the sunrise through the sole of your foot. When you have a captive audience like this, going high energy right out of the gate is the smart choice.

And just like that, the first song is over.

“Manchester, how you doing?” The drummer yells from his perch at the back. The crowd screams back at him, and he smiles like he’s just having the best damn time. I hope he is.

Taking the audience on a journey of their catalogue, featuring epic basslines and funky keyboard synths, there was an astounding amount of variety within that small subset of style. The energy levels of the set are well managed through, starting loud and exciting, mellowing out in the middle to allow the audience a breather, and ending strong with the crowd favourites. The more chilled out songs like Withorwithout are just as welcome in this shrine to music as the dancey, high tempo vibed tracks like Tieduprightnow.

If Disco and Funk had a baby, it’d be called Parcels.

Ultimately Parcels gave a fantastic performance. The right level of showmanship and style was weaved within their set, the sounds were tight and clear, and the atmosphere they created one that let people just have some fun. Looking around the room, you could see real joy and genuine love of the music in many faces.

Parcels released their debut album, the creatively named Parcels, last month. They’ve worked with Daft Punk, performed at Glastonbury, and why are you still reading this and not listening to it yet?

They're also still touring, performing tonight at Stylus, Leeds before carrying on to London, Paris and Amsterdam. Find tickets below or follow Parcels to stay updated on any future news. 

Written by
Russell Kingsfield
Wednesday 7th November 2018

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