Melody Parker composes intricate chamber songs, and Archipelago is her imaginative debut record. It invites the listener to inhabit an otherworldly place and time, yet it evokes the familiar as much as the fantastical. She has created these songs with mourning and celebration for this watery home we know—and for the paradoxical richness of our experience within it.
Parker’s work vibrates with emotional breadth, by turns contemplative and carnivalesque. Her orchestrations engage motley influences, combining incongruous elements to surprising effect. Kitchen-sink percussion and drum machines. Girl group vocals and parade brass. Old-world accordion and new wave synths. Woodwinds and choir bells. A gang of virtuosic improvisers contributes their wonderful freedom to this music, in counterbalance to Parker’s careful construction.
Photographer: Andria Lo