“An upbeat single about societal decay and disenchantment”
With their upcoming EP, Sparkle Baby 2000 slated for a September release, this week Sunshine Riot is set to drop yet another single, “Parole Board,” on the heels of early summer’s “Just Say So.” (Ed. note: No relation to our coverage of the Mass Parole Board, but also memorable nonetheless.)
“If ‘Just Say So’ was all about therapy,” the band said, “then ‘Parole Board,’ with its throwback rock vibe, brass low-end, and sing-along chorus, explains why we’re all on the psychiatrist’s couch to begin with.”
“I suppose it’s a story about a protagonist that grew up in small town, not-on-anyone’s-radar America; the sort of place that all of us in the band grew up in,” vocalist-guitarist Jonny Orton said. “I think it’s a song about the disenchantment people feel when the little town they called home gets taken over by cheap casinos and strip malls; faux, sterile luxury. The song kind of contrasts that aesthetic with the opioid epidemic that characterizes most of small-town suburbia these days and the tragic juxtaposition of kids dying in parking lots of big new developments. More concisely, it is essentially about the episode of The Simpsons in which Springfield got swindled into putting in a monorail.”
“I love the low-end horns the most, it reminds me of the work of Morphine’s bari sax player Dana Colley,” bassist Jeff Sullivan noted. “While we don’t get the exact same Parisian-night-club-full-of-smoke vibe – we would probably use an accordion player if we went for that – I think it adds so much texture.”
“Musically, the record is maybe a little slower and, at times, a little quieter than standard Sunshine Riot albums,” Orton said. “But, we think the songs are good ones and we hope folks like ’em. Lyrically, I’m not sure I ever have any consistent theme across any given record. I do my best to write about images and settings that I hope folks will find relatable and interesting.”
And yes, there will be a party. More from the band’s management below:
Sunshine Riot celebrate the release of “Parole Board” – a nice reversal as it’s usually the parole board that determines who gets released and when – with a night-of live performance at The Square Root in Roslindale on August 5. The band will be showing off a wealth of material – older tracks, selections from last year’s Electrical Tape EP, recorded in Chicago with engineer Steve Albini at Electrical Audio, and a teaser for what’s in store on Sparkle Baby 2000.