ABOUT THE PERFORMER
One listen to Happy Hour On The Floor, the band’s third full-length release, and it’s clear just how liberated Parsonsfield has become. Produced by Benjamin Lazar Davis (Joan As Police Woman, Okkervil River), the record fuses the group’s rustic instrumentation and timeless sense of songcraft with dreamy synthesizers and vintage drum machines. The arrangements here are broad and spacious, often built off spare, hypnotizing loops that fuel the songs’ mesmerizing drive, and the band’s performances are deliberate and economical to match, substituting lean, careful construction in place of the strummed exuberance that defined much of their early work. The result is a record all about finding happiness in simplicity, a captivating collection more reminiscent of modern indie pop than old-school string bands that pushes the group far beyond the perceived boundaries of its sound even as it shines a spotlight on the heart and soul of what’s always made them such a joyous revelation.
“When we started writing and recording, we realized that there weren’t any restrictions on what we could do. It came with this boundless sense of musical freedom where anything felt possible,” says lead vocalist Chris Freeman. “The experience taught us to really hone in on the core of what we love about making music together.”
Parsonsfield first emerged in 2014 with Poor Old Shine, an ecstatic acoustic collection that prompted The New York Times to praise them as “boisterously youthful yet deftly sentimental” and hailed by Folk Alley as “the most jubilant and danceable indie roots music this side of the Carolinas.” The band grew more experimental on their 2016 followup, Blooming Through The Black, and the collection earned them both glowing reviews and dates with everyone from Josh Ritter and The Jayhawks to Mandolin Orange and The New Pornographers. That same year, the group saw their music featured in the hit AMC series “The Walking Dead” and teamed up with the prestigious FreshGrass Festival to compose a score for the 1922 silent classic Nanook of the North, which they performed live alongside the film at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art.