The Parlour Suite: We've been planning this move for a long time
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As the rest of the Midwest hunkered down this past winter, Minneapolis band the Parlour Suite (Inga Roberts, Joel Roberts, and Joshua Caro) felt the tug of the West Coast and warmer weather -- namely Los Angeles. Today, the band's transformation will be complete. The trio released their EP Pressure in December. The rest of the album, which includes tracks from Pressure, arrives this week as Grant Cutler-produced VIBES. The new record is slyly fun and rests on a new synthy palate, perfect for a late evening summer dance party.
Gimme Noise caught up with Inga Roberts in her California home to see what prompted the move and the new direction of the music.
The idea to move to California had always been in the backs of Inga and Joel's minds. When Joel joined the band, the plan solidified and they did the least rock star move they could, they put together a financial plan. The group made a checklist and strategically checked off each item. One to-do on the list included a new album that integrated and introduced a new sound.
"We wanted to have something to give people before we left Minneapolis," she shares. "At the time, we didn't know if we'd be able to do a full album. We called it a preview EP, since our sound was so different than before. Throwing ten songs at our fans all at once was too much. We wanted them to be able to digest it and realize we were turning a bit in a new direction."
The transition in sound and the move happened steadily and piece by piece. Joel and Joshua headed west first to finalize plans. "It seemed very sudden, but we had been planning since early 2013," she continues. "We wanted to bring as many people into the process as possible without revealing too much. I quit my job when I left; it was a surprise to everybody. I told them I was leaving in a week, and I wasn't coming back."
There's only so much planning that you can do, though. Not having a place to live and having only an artistic outlet as a source of income was a concern from close friends and relatives.
Despite not knowing the immediate future, Inga says that they are adapting well to the scene in L.A. Their immediate surroundings have forced them to think differently creatively, especially when it comes to rehearsals. In Wayzata, they had plenty of space away from neighbors, but in the new apartment, that space has been constricted, forcing the trio to think flexibly and come up with new ideas. Even their immediate group -- people who are immersed in the music scene -- has allowed them to change, something Inga has found inspiring and something she has been wanting for a long time.
In essence, it wasn't so much a change, but a reprioritizing of agendas. She shares, "Sometimes you can know something in your heart, and there's no logic behind it, but you know it's logical for some reason. That's the direction you're supposed to go in. Everybody has a sense of trusting it. As an artist, you're so in tune to different emotional aspects that what you're doing is not logical. It's like trying to show someone a song when it's not quite finished.
"You're telling them, 'This is the part of the song that's going to build up, and I don't have the lyrics yet, but this is how it's going to sound.' It's so hard for them to see this invisible picture that's inside of you. Just like this move, we wanted to make sure everything would happen before we spoke about it; it's best to protect your heart and creativity that way. It will help people to connect with what you're doing when they're secure with it."
The Parlour Suite's VIBES is out today. You can purchase the album here.
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