A sizable crowd greeted NYC buzz band Parquet Courts at the Fun Fun Fun Fest Black Stage on Friday afternoon, even if their garage-rock clamor was a bit of an odd fit for the typically more metallic Black Stage aesthetic. “Who are these guys, anyway?” wondered one crowd member aloud back by the sound board a couple of songs into their set, though plenty of festgoers bounding around up front clearly were already converted fans.
Parquet Courts’ aesthetic is pretty one-dimensional — at times boiled down to just one jagged chord or riff — but the energy with which dual guitarists Andrew Savage and Austin Brown attack their material can be infectious. Most of their songs came in short punches, a good thing, although the brevity of their set was somewhat surprising: Booked for 3:45 to 4:30 p.m., they finished up 15 minutes early, bypassing a full one-third of their allotted time.
They made an impression nevertheless, with Savage and Brown switching vocal leads back and forth from stage right to stage left, respectively, as bassist Sean Yeaton and drummer Max Savage anchored the rhythm from the middle. A high point was the repetitive guitar hook that drove Savage’s lead vocal on “What Color Is Blood?” from last year’s album “Sunbathing Animal.”
The band members kept between-song chatter to a minimum, thanking the Dwarves for playing before them and plugging Babes in Toyland’s following set. They expressed their appreciation for so many early-arriving festgoers making their way to the far end of the grounds to the Black Stage for their set, and added, “We’ll hopefully see some of you at the Orange Stage later for Cheap Trick.” It’s a date.