Parade of Lights drops its new EP, Golden, today on Astralwerks Records. Fresh off its debut appearances at SXSW, the Los Angeles-based quartet with the new-wave-synth-pop meets shoegaze-rock sound has produced an EP of radio-friendly, 80’s inspired, indie power-pop music of the most danceable kind.
Vocalist and guitarist Ryan Daly says that the new EP is the most fully realized version of Parade of Lights yet. Probably because not only did the band write and record the tracks for the EP; Daly and band mates Anthony Improgo, Randy Schulte, and Michelle Ashley undertook all elements of its production. The results are four impressively polished, anthem-ready, hands-in-the-air dance tracks with catchy hooks, sing-along choruses and a big, alt-electro, arena-ready sound.
The EP opens with the title track “Golden.” Though not specifically written for the Olympics, the song nonetheless fit the event perfectly and was featured in NBC’s 2014 Winter Olympics TV ads. The song starts with a simple, driving drumbeat and a shouted “Hey!” before launching into a highly danceable track with catchy hooks, electro-infused melody, and uplifting lyrics about letting your real self shine through. This track has a chorus you will continue to hear playing in your head long after the music has stopped: “Everybody get golden and put your hands up to the sky. Everybody get golden just for tonight. Everybody get golden so we can go until we shine. Everybody get golden.“
The second track is “We’re the Kids,” a song the band originally self-released last year and one that all but begs to be played on repeat. It’s a big buoyant song about feeling young and carefree — even if you aren’t really a kid anymore. Crafted with Parade of Lights’ own refreshingly unique sound, it has awesome electronic elements, a powerful hook-laden chorus, and it gives voice to the free-spirited attention span of the young and the young-at-heart: “Feeling like you can’t go on / Cigarettes and future hearts / I don’t want to waste your time / Let’s just make it last tonight.”
The EP’s third track, “The Island” is an upbeat tune about falling in love and escaping from the real world to be alone together. Its uses a fabulous, and repeated, tribal drum beat to elevate it above an ordinary love song; hooking you in and transporting you to a fun, tropical place full of head bobbing, dancing and smiles.
The last track, “Burn” is actually one of my favorite tracks on the EP — my other favorite being “We’re the Kids.” While “Burn” has the signature Parade of Lights big alt-electro sound and catchy chorus, its darker lyrics give the song a rougher, grittier feel. And it has a seriously wicked, perfect in tone, bridge: “And if you go up in flames/ I think you know who’s to blame/ I know that you’ll never change.” Every time I listened to this track, I hit repeat at least once. There is something addictive about it.
In fact, the whole EP is one that you will want to play on repeat. Aptly named Golden, this EP is fun, bright and light; listening to it just makes you feel good. Well, it makes you want to dance, too.
Parade of Lights is heading out on tour with X Ambassadors in April. You can check out the band’s social media links below for tour information.[hr color=”light-grey” width=”100″ border_width=”50″ ]