When Mlny Parsonz rips into a phrase, you feel the wound. Over three albums, Royal Thunder's soulful hard-rock has very much been tied to a desperation to crawl out of darkness and find some kind of hope beyond. Over three albums, that drive has kept the Atlanta band hungry and humble. Its latest, Wick, is a sprawling account of a band still crawling.
"The Sinking Chair" is one of Wick's best tracks, not just for the '70s-style boogie that drives the winding melody, but for a band fully locked into its own groove. Josh Weaver and Will Fiore find even more intricate ways to weave their guitars without detracting from the song's purpose, and Evan Diprima gets some tasty drum fills throughout. In a stylish video directed by Justin Reich, you get to see Royal Thunder in action, playing in a gorgeous home haunted by a dark specter before going up in multi-colored puffs of smoke.
"This song is about feeling stuck in a sinking chair," Mlny Parsonz tells NPR. "You can sit there and allow yourself to be consumed by negative/paralyzing thoughts and they will do just that, consume you. You have to get up and 'break the hand that covers your mouth.'
"I hope this song brings the listener a sense of empowerment to choose a different way, a better way. When I wrote the lyrics for 'The Sinking Chair,' I was in one myself. I was in a place of frustration with a looming sense of defeat hanging above my head like a dark cloud. When I realized I didn't have to stay there, that's when I pulled myself up and moved onto something better. It always amazes me how blind we can be to the truth when we are in such a dark place, to the point of not even realizing we are truly in a dark place. Why stay there?! Rise from your sinking chair and run!"
Wick is out now on Spinefarm.