Nate Parrish released his highly anticipated sophomore album Soul Surgery on April 8, a collection of 14 raucous, bleeding heart punk rock tracks. Soul Surgery includes previously released singles like “Religion of Relevance” and “Life in Dissonance,” and is available now wherever you get your music.
“This album also contains some of my most personal and introspective lyrics,” Nate reflects. “The funny thing about the first album is that it was never really planned out as an album. The original plan was to just release singles for a while, but it kind of morphed into an album. This time around, I approached it as a complete thought, a more cohesive collection of songs centered around the idea of Soul Surgery.”
That concept is captured well by the titular track “Soul Surgery,” which observes, “we put a bandaid on this broken heart, paint the walls in a house falling apart.” The songwriter’s hand is tipped through a fierce hope wrapped in tongue-in-cheek phrasing: “call me naive, but I believe in rebirth.”
“We create new laws and threats of censorship and think it will change the corrupt hearts of men. We treat symptoms and ignore the cause. There is no pill or policy that will cure us,” Nate explains.
Like his debut album I’m A Wreck, Nate Parrish approached the creation of this album with a punk rock, hands-on attitude. He wrote, recorded, and produced the project himself, also playing the majority of the instruments. Friends were brought on for a few key features. He says, “My approach to writing and recording has been to keep it simple and ask your friends when you need help.”
The result is an album that truly reveals Nate Parrish’s heart as an artist. As an experienced guitarist with a history of playing for rock worship bands Worth Dying For and Kutless, Nate offers a unique blend of musical exploration and thoughtful, spiritually sensitive lyrics that prod at our culture in the interest of drawing us a little closer to Christ. Although some of these songs are certainly playful and clever, they’re also deeply rooted in reverence for the gospel. That’s a passion born of many years of ministry experience. “I’m most proud of the tour Kutless was able to do in Ukraine a few years back, getting to preach the gospel from stage to thousands of people who had never heard that message before,” Nate recalls as he reflects back on career highlights. “That was an experience I’ll never forget.”
However, one thing that makes Soul Surgery unique is that it is rooted in that eternal hope while also extending an invitation to those who have been on the receiving end of some faith community’s flaws. “God Knows” takes on the complexities of spiritual abuse– a toxic dynamic that Nate has experienced firsthand. “The song deals with the tension of being a part of an abusive spiritual system and still believing in the foundations of the faith,” he says.
This range of themes is masterfully handled by Nate as a songwriter as he refuses to shy away from difficult conversations. Soul Surgery is redemptively subversive, an invitation to lean into rather than away from the hard conversations about culture, faith, and living in a complex moment in history.
“Punk has also been counter-cultural by nature, a rejection of the status quo and a rejection of following anything blindly. That has also always appealed to me,” Nate finishes. “I hope my music can inspire the listener to question what they hear, challenge what needs to change, and find hope at its source.”
Listen to Soul Surgery here.