Following the success of her debut record ‘Over My Shoulder’, Tui-award finalist Mel Parsons has just released her brand new album RED GREY BLUE to wide critical acclaim: the Sunday Star Times giving it 4.5/5 stars and calling it a “cross-hybrid pop gem”; and the Waikato Times venturing “Red Grey Blue is not only Parsons’ best recording, it is one of New Zealand’s finest releases”.
Inspired by recent bands such as UK’s Mumford and Sons and Laura Marling, Parsons also draws on a healthy dose of the past for inspiration, with writers like Cat Stevens, Paul Simon and Neil Young making a lasting impression on her work.
Parsons is one of NZ’s rising songwriting stars, with a voice that “could work any night in Nashville, yet somehow sounds intrinsically New Zealand” (Black Magazine). Her bewitching vocals have been stopping audiences in their tracks for the past few years, and Parsons also possesses an uncanny knack for hooks “armed with instant sing-along choruses, a unique sensibility to melody and harmony and stonking drum grooves” (Martyn Pepperell, Word on the Street)
Her debut album was a finalist in the NZ Music Awards for Folk Album of the Year in 2009, and she has toured NZ numerous times both as a solo artist and with her backing band “The Rhythm Kings”. Along with her own shows, Parsons has supported and played alongside some of NZ’s best including Anika Moa; Don McGlashan; The Warratahs; and Greg Johnson.
After a growing up on NZ’s rural West Coast, Parsons has spent the past 10 years on the road: touring, travelling and gleaning material from life, love and loss. Her experiences translate to song in a true, bare and at times heartbreaking manner, weaved together with an infectious optimism and ever-memorable lyrics.
Forever a fan of soaring vocal harmony, Parsons is joined in the vocal booth by Anika Moa, Christof (UK), and Anji Sami (The Sami Sisters/She’s So Rad). Guitar duties are shared by Toy and Parsons’ long-time guitarist Neil Watson, while drums are taken care of by rising sensation Alistair Deverick (Ruby Suns, Lisa Crawley), with additional percussion by Paul Taylor (Feist). Ex-Cat Stevens bassist Bruce Lynch steps in on double bass, along with guest spots from Greg Johnson and Don McGlashan among others.
Mixed by award-winning engineer Andre Upston at Radio NZ and mastered by Don Bartley at Benchmark in Sydney, ‘Red Grey Blue’ is out now and available on iTunes, Bandcamp and from amplifier.co.nz
“One of those nice treats you occasionally stumble over while trawling through a sea of mediocrity”
- Nick Ward, The Nelson Mail
“Mel Parsons’ sophomore album is like high quality aural chocolate – sweet, comforting, sometimes dark, full of subtle layers, and a treat for your ears.”
- Lydia Jenkin, NZ Herald
Catch Mel Parsons and the Rhythm Kings at Dux Live on Sun 7th October!
Tix $20 from www.eventfinder.co.nz