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The Parlotones

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Johannesburg

In their native South Africa, there’s no rock band bigger than The Parlotones. The Johannesburg-bred quartet have headlined the 20,000-seater Coca Cola Dome in their hometown in 2009, performed at the World Cup Kickoff Concert to an audience of a billion in 2010, and were handpicked by Coldplay to open the British band’s stadium shows in Johannesburg and Cape Town in 2011. Also last year, The Parlotones staged an original rock theater production, Dragonflies and Astronauts, which was broadcast live around the world in 3D via DIRECTV and in 2D on Facebook. (The 3D broadcast was so well received Stateside that the satellite provider scheduled 100 re-airings, while more than half of the worldwide viewership on Facebook hailed from the U.S.) Dragonflies and Astronauts wove a narrative through the band’s catalog, including 16 songs that were Top 40 hits in South Africa.

The Parlotones’ three studio albums —2005’s Radiocontrolledrobot, 2007’s A World Next Door To Yours, and 2009’s Stardust Galaxies, have racked up numerous platinum and gold certifications and South African Music Awards, while their three live CD/DVD packages (culminating in 2010’s Live Design) have cemented their reputation as a fiery force to be reckoned with onstage. Confronted with the sight of powerfully expressive frontman Kahn Morbee leading the band — which also includes guitarist Paul Hodgson, bassist Glen Hodgson, and drummer Neil Pauw — to soaring emotional heights during their Fall 2011 club tour of the U.

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