Review – “Sheer Luxury” – The Lonely Parade

sheer luxuryreviewed by Michael Thomas

Last month, the results of apparently eight months of work with four bands led to the release of several albums. Not only was this a great idea for releasing music, but it also pulled the spotlight on some great talent from Peterborough, a town not particularly known for its indie scene.

One of the bands that took part in this adventure was the Lonely Parade, three girls who play exceedingly catchy and clean pop. Sheer Luxury was born from their efforts, and is a total breath of fresh air.

Charlotte Dempsey, Augusta Veno and Anwyn Climenhage know first and foremost to keep their songs short. It makes their songs inherently more memorable—not that the songs aren’t memorable on their own merits. The simple range of instruments weave insanely catchy melodies, and nearly every song has at least one quotable lyric. Better yet, every song seems to be skewering something or someone, and lyrics about that are always super fun to hear.

Crucially, the band doesn’t let one particular talent (witty lyric-writing) overshadow another (catchy melodies). Opener “Empty Cure” takes a bit before Dempsey’s vocals come in, allowing the listener to get lost in her funky bass playing and Veno’s simple electric guitar notes. “She Can Wait” sports sunny, surf-rock guitar hooks with lyrics like “A painted face doesn’t hide what you’re harbouring inside/What are you trying to prove?”

When the band leads towards punk the fun increases tenfold. “My Mom” is one of the album’s standouts, telling the hilarious story of a 23-year-old wannabe punk-rocker hitting on the singer’s 49-year-old mother at a punk show. Or the minor-chord-heavy “Sad Life,” a series of rapid-fire proclamations about a life not wanted: “Don’t wanna grow up/Don’t wanna get a medical degree/Fancy cars are shit/I won’t drive them they’ll drive me.”

Punk culture and overachievers aren’t the only things the Lonely Parade take aim at—”Fake Break” eviscerates religion and its ability to devolve people, while “Tip of an Iceburg,” with its laid-back guitar and casual drums, gives hipsters a few punches in the face. “You were nothing before it was cool/Tip of an iceburg, you’re such a fool,” the song begins, and later speeds up the tempo for a sweet guitar solo later on.

Peterborough is starting to look more and more like an awesome place to be, and it’s the young talent—like Watershed Hour and now Lonely Parade—that are starting to really put the place on the map.

Top Tracks: “My Mom”; “Sad Life”

Rating: Proud Hoot (Really Good)

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