TESS PARKS in performance in Tel Aviv.
(photo credit: GIL MATUS)
A packed Barby Club, with its dark walls and simple aesthetic, came alive in Tel Aviv on Tuesday night when alternative singer-songwriter Tess Parks took the stage.
The fog on stage obscured the charismatic Parks and her band, who were paradoxically bathed in red lights from the stage lighting, which created a visual effect that complimented the hypnotic, psychedelic tones.
Although the music was soft, Park’s ethereal songs were absolutely impactful. The small, packed venue experienced the full force of the Canadian-born performer, who has developed a sizable indie following through her collaborations with Brian Jonestown Massacre front man Anton Newcombe and her own well-received albums, such as Blood Hot and I Declare Nothing.
Parks is a very versatile performer, switching periodically from playing the guitar to simply singing in her striking tones. However, as impressive as her dreamlike vocals may be, it is when she’s on the guitar that she truly shines, her singing never faltering and the music only picking up in intensity.
That isn’t to sell her band short – throughout the set, its soft-flowing sounds belied a well-oiled machine, keeping the beat and setting the ambiance. More importantly, one could see the sheer enjoyment in the performers, from the guitarist’s smooth riffs to the drummer’s excited beats.
Parks’ readiness to engage her audience was notable, taking time to dedicate her songs to friends and stopping to pick up a bouquet of flowers to share with her bandmates and the crowd.
Throughout the set, Parks expressed her excitement about playing in Tel Aviv for the first time, and assured the audience that she would be back soon.
Guitar in hand, Parks, along with her bandmates, came out for an encore – which was in stark contrast to the previous soft, hypnotic tunes. The music in the encore was fast-paced and featured high energy, as if determined to leave the crowd on the highest of high notes.
“It was ethereal,” one concertgoer said after the show: “at times calm, and at times a tempest.”
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