Foxy Shazam | Introducing (Ferret Music/New Weatherman)

cd_foxy.jpgThere is something altogether wild about this music; it pervades shifts in tone, genre and style.






As gleeful as I was to finally have this disc in my greedy, greedy little fingers, I immediately became over-apprehensive as I was about to give it a go. Let me explain: Having seen Foxy Shazam perform live not once but twice before ever having listened to a studio cut, I just couldn’t help but jangle a few nerves about whether this thing would stack up to the absolutely amazing show they effect. (And, you know, I’m not sure whether they’ve ever played St. Louis, so do yourself and your friends a favor and help us get these bastards here!) I found that its contents are no less than inspiring. It didn’t leave my player for a week and hasn’t left my head at all.

Though it carries a somewhat misleading title, this is the band’s second LP (following the 2005 release of Flamingo Trigger) and, as such, blithely dodges so many of the snares that seem to accompany independent debuts. The first is the title track, and could not have been more brilliantly crafted to bait any listener. Like punk? Kay. Maybe feel like surf instead? Done. Prefer soul? That’s cool. So long as you’re willing to get dirty doing it. Introducing is no less a dance album than any Little Richard cut…except instead of going to the ball, we’re fighting bears. And that is awesome.

Subsequently, the album boasts songs:intended for use in a Robin Hood film ("Dangerous Man"), belying the sentiments of a toreador preparing for a match ("Red Cape Diver"), and celebrating the near and dear ("Cool"). I’d never have expected a battle between good and evil to have taken place alongside sun and surf, but after listening to "Its Hair Smelled Like Bonfire" (which calls to mind some kind of epic luau), I feel that I’m sufficiently prepared to pay witness to one now. "The Rocketeer" (indeed, a direct reference) is simple in its nature but, due to an equally sincere aside in the liner notes, takes on an unequivocal charm.

There is something altogether wild about this music; it pervades shifts in tone, genre and style. But as opposed to unraveling these songs at the seams, it somehow fortifies the whole (and how great it is). I’m still waiting to tire of this album and, truth be told, I don’t see it coming. And while I take a mild degree of comfort in the fact that most people are not quite so overzealous, it is impossible to imagine Foxy Shazam not gaining to their favor any advocate of, well…fun. A | Piper McDaniel

RIYL: Minor Threat, Los Straitjackets, Portugal the Man

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