Sep 232009
Authors: Ian Mahan

In a day and age when older bands seem to be going on reunion tours, perhaps some attention should focus on to the bands composed of 20-something-year-old college graduates.

Hailing from Charlottesville, Va. and consisting of University of Virginia graduates, Parachute combines the flare and catchiness of pop-rock with the timelessness of R&B and soul.

The band’s debut album, “Losing Sleep,” provides enough middle-ground pop-rock to clear a safe landing for the bands’ future.

The first single from the album, “She Is Love,” showcases the sentimental side of the band and boasts un-produced, raw talent from vocalist/pianist Will Anderson, who sounds like a more polished Van Morrison.

“Back Again,” a more punk oriented song, throws a bit of a curve ball at listeners and borrows guitar scratching from a band of similar style: Maroon 5. The song, however, prepare listeners for the “harder” hitting tunes on the album.

On the track “She (For Liz),” perhaps the most clever song on the album lyrically, Anderson croons, “She is the words that I can’t find, how can the only thing that’s killing me make me feel so alive?”

The song musically displays a different side of the band, adding horns and a very Billy Joel inspired piano influence.

“The Mess I Made,” shows that Parachute isn’t all about funky pop-rock ear candy, albeit it’s a slower song on the album. It is a well-written ballad about messing up a relationship that might have been going all too well. However, the song seems exhausted lyrically and shows limitations to the young, developing band.

“Words Meet Heartbeats” gives listeners a more mellowed down version of the funky riffs seen on the album, providing straight four-on-the-floor driving drums and well orchestrated guitar and piano riffs.

For a debut album, “Losing Sleep” is certainly nothing to be overlooked. It shows a lot of maturity and musical talent in a band that clearly has a bright future.

The band’s name hints at a landing apparatus, but the sky is the limit for this new group of post-collegiate rockers with sophisticated pop gems.

Music reviewer Ian Mahan can be reached at

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