Review of Stardust Galaxies Album by The Parlotones

Given a certain sporting event at the moment, it would be easy to assume a record company cash-in attempt when pushing a band from South Africa. There's no questioning this quartet don't deserve a push though, having completed a 300 date world tour, which continues with European dates over the summer.

The Parlotones Stardust Galaxies Album

If you like your rock music anthemic, with plenty to sing and dance along to, then 'Stardust Galaxies' picks up where the in-hiatus Killers left off. 'Should We Fight Back' and 'We Call This Dancing' are fun romps which employ synths for a sense of urgency, but also have substance to their style - the former inspired by Nelson Mandela's autobiography. Vocalist Kahn Morbee shares a similar theatrical style to Brandon Flowers, no more so evident then on 'Push Me To The Floor', a thumping tune that is designed for arena and festival settings. There's more of the same in 'Life Design', but those who want something less simplistic can find a mature sound in 'Fly To The Moon' or the emotive nostalgia of 'Remember When.'

Whilst most albums would settle on one show-stopping moment, there are potentially three on 'Stardust Galaxies'. 'Welcome To The Weekend' utlises dynamic changes to great effect, while 'It's Only Science' employs a patient development to end with a rewarding crescendo, but both are topped by the finale and title track. A duet with Zolani Mahola, it stands completely in contrast to the other songs, with a dark cinematic quality led by a combination of organ and strings. It's a striking way to end proceedings and furthers the qualities already displayed. The press release states that The Parlotones 'look set to be the first African rock band to cross-over into the mainstream' - it may well be right.

Alex Lai

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