Loud. Explosive. Urgent. These words could only describe two things: me in the bathroom after a Dos Reales burrito and the music of Parts and Labor. Today you’re in luck; I am, in fact, talking about music “¦ and not the kind that comes out of my butt trumpet. Parts and Labor, the Brooklyn-based noise/punk/electro-rock (tack on a few more genres if you like) outfit has been creating some really cool music since 2002. This year, they released their third full-length album, Mapmaker, to my ears’ very serious adulation.
On Mapmaker, the band lets us have it with an aggressive mix of punk rock drums, squealing guitars and bugged-out Casio keyboards. This is an album best enjoyed at high volumes. About 40 minutes in length, the up-tempo 12-song LP packs in a lot of great tracks in a short amount of time. One of my favorite songs on Mapmaker, “New Crimes,” opens with a subtle strum of the electric guitar and slowly morphs into a bizarre punk Irish jig. It’s weird, but it’s good.
Mapmaker is eclectic to say the least. The variety of sounds seems infinite and left me wondering just what the hell they were using for instruments on a lot of the songs. Take “King of the Hill” for example. The song’s high energy drums, epic vocals and wicked guitar breakdowns kick ass, and on top of this rock sundae there is a cherry: a totally bizarre, crunchy, glitched-out synth melody (made with who-knows-what amalgamation of synthesizers and effects).
Overall, this is a pretty fantastic album. The best thing about the up-and-coming band is that they’ll be coming to the Highdive Oct. 26. This CD is definitely worth a listen, so be sure to check them out, and don’t miss your opportunity to see them live here in Urbana.

Leave a Reply