Updated: Dec 12, 2022
Grown from a spare room in Charlotte, North Carolina friends Michael Haracopos (Guitar, Vocals), Conor Mckeon (Guitar, Vocals), Harrison Webb (Drums), and Coty Welch (Bass) were just looking to jam together. This group soon took off as 'Troubleshoot' and described their sound as "sad boy indie rock lightly soaked in a southern twang." Inspired by Built to Spill, Pavement, Cursive, and Neil Young, Troubleshoot writes narrative-style lyrics drawing on the struggles of life and love with grooves that won't quit.
Just jamming eventually became a fully formed five-song EP titled Parson Street. This EP encapsulates many different genres and influences under the emo-indie rock umbrella. The record begins with "Apart," which initially seems to be an acoustic "Wildflowers" style track before kicking into a higher gear. McKeon's lyrics are poignantly reflective, singing, "pick up what you find/but be careful of what you keep/I'll catch back up with you in your dreams," before leading into this heart-wrenching chorus, "This isn't how you said it'd be/you were watching me fall apart/Tearing at me from the seams/you really pulled me apart." But both lyricism and arrangement are tied together with the string of bluesy riffs by Haracopos. We easily flow into the next track, "Best Unknown," where Troubleshoot's emo influences are heard best. The track has just the right amount of distorted guitar and sounds familiarly reminiscent of Nirvana's "Come as You Are."
The third song, "Foundations," is perfectly placed in the middle of the EP. Originally titled "Bitch Tits" (I am very sad to see this title was changed), this track builds slowly; at around 0:18, you feel like the vocals are about to enter, but at 1:12, you're nearly positive they'll finally enter! While you might initially be disappointed as your expectations are challenged, if you continue to listen, the instrumentation of the four will fill you with tasteful melodic licks you can hum along to. You'll forget you were even looking for lyrics. "Spark It Up" is their most indie rock track laid back with unpolished vocals, talking about what you might think the title suggests, smoking a joint. Nice and straightforward. "Without" is Troubleshoot's most cohesive track on the project and so aptly fits as the final song. In this one, you got it all: distorted guitars, melodic soloing, and hard-hitting drums. The lyrics sing, "I lost my way, somehow/I'm sorry I pushed you out," which sounds like the record has come full circle, and the protagonist from the first track is assuming some accountability for the end of the relationship.
LONG STORY SHORT: Troubleshoot's Parson Street explores musical variety while writing musing lyrics. The highlight of this tape is the lead guitar that punches in throughout the tracks giving the listener musical ear candy to bite into. These four friends are onto something.
Stream Parson Street below!